Linx-AEI Consulting: photovoltaics materials market to top US$15 billion by 2015

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Although there is an expected decline in the demand for advanced chemicals and materials used in PV solar cells and modules, Linx-AEI Consulting said in a new report that the market would return to growth in 2010 and reach a value of approximately $15 billion by 2015. PV chemicals and materials used for all types of technology will decline to US$2.3 billion in 2009, Linx-AEI Consulting said.

The new report, Chemicals & Materials for Photovoltaic Cells and Modules, 2009, outlines the effects of the levelized cost of energy (LCOE) as a function of module performance, taking into account geography-specific considerations. Offering considerations for chemicals needs for individual cell and module types for crystalline silicon, amorphous silicon, tandem-junction, CdTe and CI(G)S cells and modules, the report includes a breakdown of market opportunities available to chemicals and materials suppliers.

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The market research firm also believes that attention should be made to the evolving market opportunities available to chemicals and materials suppliers as a result of strong volume growth in addition to technology-driven opportunities to deliver progress towards lower cost.

“This industry is still driven by the need to achieve grid parity and its evolution is still strongly impacted by policy,” noted Mark Thirsk of Linx-AEI. “Therefore, there is a critical need for all value chain participants to continually monitor and understand levelized cost of energy LCOE, technology development, existing investment and changes in policy. This need has been clearly illustrated with the current turmoil in the supply of polysilicon.”

The new report also highlights the significant growth in demand projected for float glass as both crystalline and thin film modules use the material. Backsheet material demand is also expected to grow rapidly. Overall PV production is expected to grow from 5.7GW to 36GW by 2015.

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