Discover more about the market for building-integrated photovoltaics with our recently-published report.
Barriers for alternative solar PV technology
In theory, the production cost of alternative solar PV technology-based modules should be lower than crystalline silicon modules. However, these technologies have not achieved the economies of scale that their counterparts have been enjoying for over a decade. This makes the initial capital investment pricier for alternative solar PV modules.
Also, the relative product cost is impacted. This makes alternative solar PV costlier than crystalline silicon technology. This means that, despite the lower manufacturing cost of these modules, companies promoting alternative solar PV technologies have not been able to prove this option practically.
That’s without mentioning another major hurdle: lower efficiency. Aside from CIGS technology, most of the other well-established alternative solar PV technologies have struggled in terms of reaching an efficiency comparable to crystalline silicon technologies. Lower efficiencies mean more modules are needed to deliver similar results to their counterpart. Again, this comes down to an increase in the relative cost of balance of systems, making alternative solar PV less favorable in comparison to c-Si technologies, especially in BIPV applications.
Understand the growing opportunities for BIPV
Despite high costs and questions of efficiency, businesses will gradually become more educated on the benefits of building-integrated photovoltaics. The potential of BIPV remains strong, as governments seek to make buildings more sustainable and energy efficient – with which BIPV is more than able to assist.
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