WUXI, China, April 18, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --Suntech Power Holdings Co., Ltd. (NYSE: STP), the world's leading producer of crystalline silicon photovoltaic modules, recently supplied 240 advanced solar panels for a 48kW rooftop installation on Town Hall in Sydney, Australia. The panels are the first in Australia to showcase Suntech's cutting-edge Pluto technology. "The heart of Sydney is a fantastic location for the first Pluto-powered solar installation in Australia," said Dr. Stuart Wenham, Chief Technology Officer for Suntech and Director of the ARC Photovoltaics Centre of Excellence at UNSW. "Suntech's collaborations with Australian research institutions remain central to the growth of solar energy in Australia and around the world." The advanced solar installation on the historic, 121-year-old building is one of the largest in downtown Sydney and serves as iconic advocate for the growth of renewable energy technology. Installed and integrated by Stowe Electrical, the solar system will supply decades of clean power for Town Hall and the Council Chambers. The installation is part of an AUD$18 million plan to improve the energy efficiency of city-owned properties in Sydney. "Sydney is among a growing number of international cities recognizing that we cannot continue to rely on energy generated from coal-fired plants. It's incredibly inefficient with two-third of the energy wasted during production and transfer. Our Sustainable Sydney 2030 plan is to provide 25 percent of our energy needs from renewable sources and reduce demand for power from coal- fired plants," said the Lord Mayor, Clover Moore, "The solar installation on Town Hall demonstrates that new green technology can be incorporated into heritage buildings." Pluto technology, used to create the solar cells in panels installed on Sydney Town Hall, features a revolutionary solar cell design that improves conversion efficiencies by up to 12% in commercialized solar cells, and was inspired by the world record-holding PERL solar cells from UNSW. Suntech's Pluto-powered monocrystalline cells have achieved 19% conversion efficiency in commercial production, independently verified by the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany. "Advanced solar technology is central to powering a future where everyone has reliable access to nature's cleanest and most abundant energy resource," said Dr. Zhengrong Shi, Chairman and CEO of Suntech, a graduate of UNSW, as well as a fellow at the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering (ATSE). "Our 380 global R&D professionals, working with leading research organizations in Australia and around the world, are targeting over 20% conversion efficiency in commercialized monocrystalline solar cells by 2012, further driving solar to grid parity against fossil fuels." In addition to collaborating with UNSW, Suntech is also working closely with Swinburne University of Technology on the development of nanoplasmonic solar cells, which could dramatically increase the efficiency of solar cells by enabling them to absorb a much broader spectrum of light. Suntech has pledged AUD$3 million to help fund the advanced research performed at Swinburne's new Advanced Technology Centre.