27 March 2012


Photovoltaics materials market forecasted to grow to 40+ billion Dollar by 2016, according to New Report

A report by the expert consultants of AEI Consulting notes however, that the demand could be flat during 2012 due to challenging external environment suffering from adverse policy changes in major PV markets in Europe.  The new report includes detailed insights into the demand for silicon, slurries, gases, wet chemicals, precursors, dopants, and other critical materials.
The market for chemicals and materials used in PV solar cells and modules stood at $19.7 billion in 2011, of which polysilicon accounted for 41%, metallic pastes 11%, Glass-EVA-backsheet 16%, saw wires & slurry 12%, chemicals 9% and other materials for balance 11%. The market is projected to grow to a forecasted $41.6 billion in 2016. The report notes that the share of polysilicon in the global PV materials market is expected to come down to 16% level by 2016 due to decrease in silicon usage thanks to technological advancements. The outlook for materials sales in 2012 will slow slightly as PV module demand in Germany adjusts to new incentive policies and module prices decline. Growth resumes in 2013 as new markets emerge, according to the industry report.
The report analyzes the production processes and supply chain trends for the manufacture of cells and materials, as well as examining the emerging materials requirements for novel technologies. The growth trend in the aggregate global market for the materials covered is shown in the following graphic.
PV Cell and Module Chemical and Material Demand

The report outlines key PV technology developments in major market segments and discusses their implications for materials supply and innovation. In crystalline Silicon, a drive to lower material cost and to increase cell efficiency is opening the door to diamond wire sawing, improved texturization processes, double printing, novel selective emitter schemes, n-type silicon, novel plating technologies, ion implant, new passivation layer and kerfless wafering technologies. In Thin Film modules, a number of potential candidates for improving efficiencies and reducing material costs are identified, which include improved plasma deposition, improving buffer layer designs, improving quality of anti-reflective layers, Nanocrystalline silicon oxide doped layers, laser patterning, replacement of Cds buffer layer with more transparent material (ZnO), Close Spaced Sublimation (CSS) deposition for CdTe cells etc.
Key c-Si PV Technological developments:

For more information about this report, please contact AEI Consulting at [email protected] or 973.671.8191
About AEI
AEI Consulting is a leading international consulting firm serving the photovoltaics industry. The firm develops industry reports on chemicals and materials, processing technology, cell and module producers and grid parity analyses, including unique financial perspectives on the growth trajectory of the PV industry. For more information, visit or visit us on Facebook at

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