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15 July 2015

CIGS and HCPV to be game changers in PV market

The share of total global solar photovoltaic (PV) production capacity taken by conventional crystalline silicon (x-Si) solar technologies is forecasted to decline further, from 84.7% in 2014 to 78.4% by 2019, as they approach their theoretical limit in energy conversion efficiency and as alternative emerging PV technologies increasingly raise the efficiency record, according to the report 'Chasing the Sun: Searching for Game Changers in Disruptive Photovoltaic Technologies' (part of Innova Research's Renewable Energy and Environmental Technologies service).

The report classifies the emerging solar technologies into three major categories, namely thin-film PV, including copper indium gallium (di)selenide (CIGS), cadmium telluride (CdTe), thin-film silicon (TF-Si); concentrated PV (CPV), including low-concentrating LCPV and high-concentrating HCPV; and third-generation solar technologies, including organic PV (OPV), dye-sensitized solar cell (DSSC), copper zinc tin sulfide (CZTS), quantum dot (QD) and perovskite solar cells.

"Thin-film and CPV technologies are poised for large commercialization in the near future, while the third-generation PV technologies will still have a long way to go towards that goal," says research director Nancy Wu (lead author of the report). "The winners among the emerging PV technologies will be copper indium gallium (di)selenide (CIGS) and high-concentrating PV (HCPV)," she believes. "Both are benefiting from their outstanding cost-reduction potentials and the feasibility for massive adoption."

CIGS leads thin-film PV expansion, with production capacity growth from an estimated 1.8GW in 2010 to a forecasted 5.6GW in 2019, followed by CdTe growing from 2.5GW to 3.5GW. Meanwhile, production capacities for CPV modules are forecasted to grow from 1.5GW in 2010 to 2.4GW in 2019 (with over 60% of capacity contributed by HCPV in 2019).

In alternative solar technology, thin-film PV accounts for most merger and acquisition (M&A) activity, followed by CPV, with 24 and 14 deals closed, respectively, from 2010 to 2014. The total values of M&A deals in the thin-film and CPV fields were estimated to be $1.08bn and $247m, respectively, in this period.

The USA leads in intellectual property (IP) publication in CdTe, CIGS and CZTS, while Asian countries including China, Japan and South Korea have been catching up in DSSC, QD and perovskite PV technologies over the past five years. The increasing research focus on alternative solar PV technologies, particularly on their efficiency enhancement and stability of the systems, should greatly drive up commercialization in the next few years, reckons Innova Research.

Tags: Thin-film photovoltaic CdTe CIGS CPV CZTS

Visit: www.innovaresearchinc.com

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