Solar PV Storage market set to become big. But how big?

Energy Storage is set to be the next big growth area, especially due to the high penetration of “variable wind and solar power”.  But the question is, how big can the market grow? Two reports released in a space of 4 months give very different growth estimates. The first report forecasts the PV Storage market to touch annual revenues of $19 billion in 2017 while the second report is a lot pessimistic and says that in 2018, the Solar/Storage market will have annual revenues of $2.7 Billion.
The first report is by IMS Research and was released in April 2013. The report predicts that the PV storage systems will grow at more than 100% per year and will touch 7 GW in 2017. The revenues will increase to $19 billion in 2017 from less than $200 million in 2012. The report says that Germany’s PV storage incentive will be one of the major growth drivers. It also predicts that 70% of  storage installed in residential PV systems worldwide in 2013 will be in Germany.
The other report, by Lux Research, has a different take. Its projections are about one-tenth of the projection by IMS Research and predicts that only 681 MW of PV storage systems be installed in 2018. Of this, a vast majority of storage installations will be grid-tied installations. Telecom is the greatest off-grid application. Unlike IMS Research, the report by Lux Research predicts Japan to be the market leader by a wide margin, with Germany coming second.
Since the methodology and assumptions taken in arriving at these numbers are not available, there is no way to say which one could be a better projection.
A comparison of the two projections is given below.
IHS Research – Click here for the press release.


Lux Research – Click here to read more.
This is not the end of the comparison. Boston Consulting Group(BCG) has also released a whitepaper on the solar storage market. According to BCG, the annual global sales of storage technologies are set to reach €6 billion by 2015 and €15 billion by 2020.  The region specific growth pattern is given below.

The BCG report can be accessed here.
The one thing that can be inferred from these projections is that the market is still in its early stage and the growth can vary based on the policies, applications and several factors.
When it comes to the Indian market, the India Energy Storage Alliance(IESA) projects the Indian  Energy storage market to reach 20 GW by 2020. Please note that this number is not for just Solar Storage applications alone, but for the entire storage market. The details of IESA’s outlook for the Indian storage market can be found here.

Subscribe to RESolve Energy Consultants : Perspectives and Insights by Email