The global PV tracker market increased by more than 60 percent, to reach 4 gigawatts (GW) in 2014, according to a new report from IHS (IHS), the leading global source of critical information and insight.
Array Technologies remained the leading manufacturer of photovoltaic (PV) trackers last year, even as competitors gained share; however, the company’s market share in PV trackers declined 20 percent, due to the variability of the utility-scale market, particularly in the United States, the report said. Array Technologies is still focused on its domestic market, but it is strategically planning to expand internationally in 2015.
Although PV trackers were installed in just 11 percent of ground-mount installations in 2013, they are forecast to account for just under 20 percent of installations this year. The top three PV tracker manufacturers comprised 40 percent of the market, and the top four companies are based in the United States. “As the United States was the biggest market for trackers in 2014, and with some of the largest tracker companies headquartered there, it is no surprise that the leading suppliers have such a dominant market share,” said Cormac Gilligan, senior analyst, solar supply chain, IHS Technology.
According to the “PV Balance of System Equipment – 2015” report, SunPower, First Solar and other leading module suppliers with their own in-house tracker technologies increasingly use single-axis trackers in their projects. “Historically First Solar has been a little slower to use single-axis trackers, in lieu of fixed-tilt trackers, despite acquiring Ray tracker in 2011,” Gilligan said. “However in 2015 the company is expected to significantly rely more on single-axis trackers, due to the rapid price reduction and higher energy yield of those products.”
Soitec, a leading provider of dual-axis trackers active in the niche market of concentrated photovoltaic (CPV) and the only non-U.S. tracker supplier, chose to exit the solar market in the first quarter (Q1) of 2015, despite being ranked fifth in 2014. Although NEXTracker fell from third to fourth position, the company has rapidly emerged as a serious competitor to other tracker suppliers. “Not only has NEXTracker been a successful preferred supplier of trackers for SunEdison, a leading global EPC player, the company has really embraced the global PV market by shipping its trackers to Chile, Australia and other international markets outside of the United States,” Gilligan said.
For further information about the “PV Balance of System Equipment – 2015” report, contact the sales department at IHS in the Americas at (844) 301-7334 or AmericasLeads@ihs.com; in Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) at +44 1344 328 300 or email@example.com; or Asia-Pacific (APAC) at +604 291 3600 or technology_APAC@ihs.com.