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As Global Advanced Batteries Market Doubles to $20.8 Billion in 2020, Zero-Emission Fuel Cells will be Most Sought, But High Costs and Budget Constraints Hinder Growth


Source: Global Information, Inc. (GII)

FARMINGTON, Conn., March 26, 2013 /PR Newswire/ --

A new report forecasts the global advanced batteries market will grow from $9.5 billion in 2012 to reach $20.8 billion in 2020. One of the key drivers for the advanced battery industry is that it is an environmentally-friendly technology with fewer pollution and disposal issues than other technologies. In recent years, substantial progress has been made in the market for advanced batteries, fuel cells, flywheels, and ultracapacitors. There has also been a substantial amount of progress in increasing the expected battery life and developing battery technologies capable of effectively powering various digital devices, power tools, battery electric vehicles, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.

Zero-emission sources of power such as fuel cells eliminate or at least vastly reduce pollution and greenhouse gas emissions compared to burning fossil fuels. This, combined with their low noise pollution, makes them one of the most promising energy storage technologies and helps them attract the greatest investor interest among power supply technologies. Driven by the need to compensate for the ill-effects and inconveniences of lead-acid batteries, stationary fuel cells are primarily used for backup power applications. Fuel cells are considered low maintenance, environmentally friendly storage solutions with long life spans for long periods of back-up power. Since the market is in its developmental stage, it is characterized by highly restricted sales volumes, with the consequence that prices fall due to a lack of adequate demand. Nevertheless, the potential of fuel cells is being actively explored by power supply players across the value chain.

According to 'Global Energy Storage Market to 2020', the value of the global fuel cells market is expected to increase from $767.2 million in 2012 to $3.8 billion in 2020 at a CAGR of 22.2%. However, high costs hinder growth in the fuel cells market. Economies of scale are still unavailable as fuel cell technology continues to evolve. What's more is that most fuel cell technologies use precious metals such as platinum as catalysts. This increases the cost of the design. In order to be competitive, fuel cell technology developers must search for an effective, but less expensive option. The usage of expensive metals, and the lack of economies of scale, means that the initial cost of fuel systems is very high, causing potential customers to choose alternative options.

Power transportation vehicles represent the most promising application segment for fuel cells. Apart from meeting emissions legislation, fuel cells are also required in order for operating temperatures to be reached rapidly. Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cells are best suited for this purpose due to their ability to operate at low temperatures and adjust rapidly to changing load requirements. Fuel cells are used to power cars, buses, scooters, forklifts, auxiliary power units, trains, planes, and boats.

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Infiniti and TechNavio Research offer their version of the global fuel cell market in their report, 'Global Fuel Cell Market 2011-2015'. According to the study forecasts, the global fuel cell market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 16.49 percent through between 2011 and 2015. However, increased development of codes and standards are shaping the landscape. The report cautions that governmental budget cuts could pose a challenge to market growth.

Key fuel cell vendors profiled in this report include UTC Power LLC, FuelCell Energy Inc., Ballard Power Systems Inc., and Hydrogenics Corp.

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Next Generation Batteries Conference

April 30, 2013May 1, 2013 | Boston, MA

Face-to-face network and learning opportunities await battery executives at Next Generation Batteries. This year's event features a panel of leading experts in fields of battery materials, systems design and integration, manufacturing and commercial applications. Attendees will look into the emerging issues underlining this pivotal time in the battery industry.

Learn more about the conference and register at

Find more market research for the fuel cell and battery industry

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