The global organic solar cells market, also commonly referred to organic-based photovoltaics, is a highly developing and rapidly growing market. In only a matter of a year, the market has made an impressive shift from the realm of fundamental research at university levels into industry-level production.
Use of photovoltaic cells for harvesting energy directly from sunlight is considered one of the most promising ways of addressing mounting global energy needs. Solar cells constitute one of the cleanest ways of harvesting energy, since they use a source of freely available renewable energy and causes minimal detrimental effect on the environment by not adding to the level of atmospheric emissions at all.
Provided that solar cells can be made economically competitive against traditional energy sources such as fossil fuels, the large-scale manufacturing of solar cells will offer a reliable source of sustainable energy that could account for a substantial portion of our energy needs. Usage of organic materials such as various novel polymers for fabricating solar cells is a good way of reducing the manufacturing – and thus final – costs of solar cells. The use of organic substances for manufacturing solar cells makes the manufacturing process potentially easier than conventional manufacturing processes using silicon or other such materials. Organic solar cells also have one more important advantage over the conventional solar cells – they can be easily molded into different shapes and colored in various ways, making them preferable when the application focuses more on design and flexibility and less on efficacy.
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The only restricting factors for organic solar cells are their lower efficiency and smaller life compared to conventional solar cells. However, with technological advancements taking place at a rapid pace, the industry will also find a plausible solution to these problems soon, pushing the market more firmly in the future. In fact, some companies such as Solarmer Energy, Inc. and Heliatek GmbH have also constantly invested in research activities for improving the efficiency of organic solar cells over the past decade.
The many benefits of organic solar cells have caused the global market to rapidly adopt these cells in a variety of application areas, especially in fields such as building-integrated solar cells and mobile applications such as powering portable devices in vehicles. One would consider the use of organic solar cells in these areas a rather introductory application for a technology with huge growth potential and benefits; however, these areas are also the ones that can open doors for widespread appeal quite easily. Though cost-sensitive, domestic users are also the most abundant end users of any technology related with power generation.
Global Organic Solar Cell Market - A Million Dollar Marketplace
Analysts state that the global market for organic solar cells had an estimated net worth of US$25.518 million in 2013. Registering growth at a CAGR of nearly 21.2% between 2014 and 2020, the market is expected to reach an estimated value of US$97.412 million by 2020.
Demand for organic solar cells is currently the highest from the building integrated organic photovoltaic (BIPV) section. This market segment is also expected to flourish at a good pace over the future years, at an estimated 24.4% CAGR between 2014 and 2020.
On a regional basis, the European market leads the global market, accounting for a nearly 35% share of the global organic solar cells market. The North American market acquires second place by accounting for a nearly 28% share in the overall market. By the end of 2020, the North American market is expected to reach to US$35.779 million.
Some of the key participants of the market include New Energy Technologies, Inc., Heliatek GmbH, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, Disa Solar, Solarmer Energy, Inc., Sumitomo Chemical Co., and BELECTRIC OPV GmbH, Ltd. of these, Heliatek GmbH acquired the leading position in the market in 2012 owing to the company’s collaborations with leading vendors and technological advancements across the value chain.
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