The global solar encapsulation market is projected to witness healthy growth over the forecast period, on account of the rising global demand for electricity. Another factor that will positively affect the market is the rapid progress that is expected from the sustainable and unconventional energy sector, on account of the depleting conventional sources, environmental concerns and increased cost of production. The other major contributor fueling the growth of the market is increasing investment in modernization of infrastructure with no other substitute making solar encapsulation a backbone of manufacturing PV technology.
Solar encapsulation refers to the process of protecting the expensive solar panels and equipment’s that are vulnerable to various environmental and physical threats. This improves their efficiency coupled with cost saving. This feature of solar encapsulation process has triggered its market share. Solar encapsulation market may be segmented on the basis of its applications which include construction, electronics and automotive. On the basis of technology that include- thin film solar technology, single crystal or polycrystalline silicon technology and on the basis on basis of material used such as EVA, PVB, PV, PDMS, and ionomer. The market is dominated by PV material as they are major components used in the manufacture of encapsulations. The major properties exhibited by solar encapsulations are good mechanical resistance, good insulation, adhesion property, good light transmittance and outstanding long term performance. A major constraint in the growth of this sector is the expensive solar equipment’s and solar panels. The major focus of solar encapsulation manufacturers is on R&D to develop new encapsulants for emerging PV technologies.
Emerging markets of Asia pacific, North America, Europe are major users of solar encapsulates. Rapid development, mergers and acquisitions and investment in R&D are driving factors for growth in solar encapsulation industry. Feed-in tariff policy which is introduced in 50 countries globally is another factor contributing to the growth of solar encapsulation industry in the forecast period. The policy is designed to initiate and accelerate the investment in renewable energy technologies. Long term contracts are offered to renewable energy producers proportionate to cost of generation of each technology. The policy is aimed to boost the growth of solar encapsulation market in Europe, Asia pacific regions. Germany is the world leader in generation of electricity through solar technology owing to a combination of feed-in tariff scheme, awareness of PV technology and good financing opportunities. China follows Germany in top solar market list owing to commitment to reduce the carbon footprint.
Key players in the market include STR Holdings Inc. (U.S.). It holds majority of the global solar encapsulation market followed by Hangzhou First PV Material Co. Ltd. (China) and Solutia (U.S.). Rest of the market share is occupied by other players such as Bridgestone (Japan), Dow Corning (U.S.), DuPont (U.S.), Jura-plast, Trosifol.
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