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Global Market for Concentrated Solar Power Could Reach $133B by 2030

April 7, 2022 by Dan McCue
The Ivanpah Concentrated Solar Power facility. Via Flickr)

WASHINGTON — The worldwide market for concentrated solar power could be worth as much as $133 billion by 2030, despite high upfront costs and other concerns, a new report finds.

If it does indeed achieve the value identified by Precedence Research, a market research firm based in Ottawa, Canada, the technology’s compounded annual growth rate will be 13.8%.

Concentrated solar power is a method of generating electricity at a utility scale through the use of parabolic mirrors.

The mirror concentrates and focuses natural sunlight onto a specific point at or near the top of a tower, which is then converted into heat. The heat is then used to create steam, which drives a turbine to generate electrical power. 

While the process might seem complicated, the virtue of CSP technology is that the heat produced can be stored and saved for use on days when there is no sun or before sunrise or after sunset.

According to the Precedence Research report, the global concentrated solar power market reached a size of $41.73 billion in 2021, its growth driven primarily by government initiatives meant to support development of renewable energy resources and curb carbon emissions.

A secondary factor driving the growth is the increasing availability of advanced technologies, lile parabolic troughs, Fresnel Reflectors and power towers.

At the same time, technological advancements such as high temperature salts and sCO2, have helped the technology’s heat transfer qualities with minimum losses.

North America was actually the second leading market for CSP in 2020, governments in the region have an increased awareness regarding the carbon emissions, strict laws regarding the environment protection, and government subsidies for encouraging the adoption of the renewable sources of energy. 

In addition, the higher adoption of the latest technologies and increased investments in the deployment of renewable power sources is a significant driver of the North America concentrated solar power market.

Coming in at the top of the list was the Asia Pacific, which garnered a market share of around 42% and led the global concentrated solar power market in 2020. 

Researchers said the surge in use – the region’s market share is about 42% – can be attributed to rapid industrialization and urbanization, which has increased the need for efficient power supply. 

Moreover, the reports says, the rising air pollution levels in places like China is encouraging the government and corporate sector to opt for renewable energy sources whenever possible.

Over the next decade, the Middle East is expected to witness significant growth in the sector as it begins to unravel its dependence on fossil fuel. Thus far the leader in the region has been the United Arab Emirates which increased its sustainable energy capacity to 2 GW due to the commissioning of the  Bin Rashid Al Maktoum Solar Park in Abu Dhabi in 2018.

The report then goes on to discuss some of the possible restraints on the growth of concentrated solar power technology.

First among these despite government incentives, is the cost of the technology, which accounts for 80% of the total cost of installing concentrated solar power technology. 

At the same time, additional costs are involved in the maintenance and operation of the systems. These high capital investments are the major factor that may hinder the market growth during the forecast period, the report says.

Dan can be reached at dan@thewellnews.com and at https://twitter.com/DanMcCue.

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