Green Power Generation Drives Rechargeable Battery Market in 2013

2014/04/21 21:51
Kenji Kaneko, Nikkei BP CleanTech Institute

Fuji Keizai Co Ltd conducted a research on products equipped with large-capacity rechargeable batteries and the global market for them and announced the overview of the results April 18, 2014.

According to the results, the global market for large-capacity rechargeable batteries grew by 19.1% on a year-over-year basis to ¥1.6645 trillion (approx US$16.2 billion) in 2013. Fuji Keizai (Chuo Ward, Tokyo) predicts that, in 2025, the scale of the market will be ¥9.8570 trillion, which is 5.9 times larger than that in 2013.

As of 2013, rechargeable batteries for automobiles and power storages respectively accounted for slightly less than 40% of the market. But the company expects that automotive rechargeable batteries will account for more than 70% of the market in 2025.

As new markets, Fuji Keizai paid attention to rechargeable batteries for power storage systems. In 2013, the market for them expanded by 4.5% on a year-over-year basis to ¥103.5 billion due to sales of residential batteries. Fuji Keizai predicts that the scale of the market will be ¥730.3 billion in 2025, which is 7.1 times larger than in 2013.

Residential rechargeable batteries
Residential rechargeable batteries are employed mainly for emergency power sources in the US and other countries. And the company expects that they will be increasingly used for peak shift adjustment in Europe, especially in Germany, and Australia and for stand-alone power sources in India and countries in Africa, where power distribution infrastructures have not been well established but residential power demand is increasing.

In Japan, major housing manufacturers began to employ residential power storage systems after the Great East Japan Earthquake, forming a market for them, especially those for newly-built houses. Currently, the demand for residential power storage systems is accounted for mainly by existing houses that introduce solar power generation systems.

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Non-residential rechargeable batteries
Most of the non-residential power storage systems sold in 2013 were employed for public facilities in Japan and for peak cut and peak shift adjustments in Germany. In Japan, they were introduced along with solar power generation systems especially in public facilities because of the launch of the "Green New Deal Fund."

Fuji Keizai predicts that the demand for non-residential power storage systems will temporarily decline due to cutback on and abolition of subsidies but it will grow in the medium and long terms due to lowering prices of rechargeable batteries. Outside Japan, there will be growing demand especially in Germany but also in Australia and China, where the "smart city" project is expected to advance, according to the company.

Large-capacity power storage systems are introduced mostly for verification purposes. And the market for them is influenced by the existence of large-scale projects. In terms of power storage systems used for stabilizing the outputs of renewable energy-based power generation facilities, systems for wind power plants have taken a lead.

Fuji Keizai predicts that different power storage systems will be used for different purposes (output smoothing for short-term output adjustment and output leveling for long-term output adjustment) based on their characteristics. And the company expects that lithium-ion (Li-ion) and nickel-metal-hydride (NiMH) batteries will be used for output smoothing while lead-acid, NaS, redox flow and Zebra batteries will be used for output leveling.