Polysilicon glut and cheaper photo voltaic panels?

Rethink power within the UK predicts a glut of polysilicon, resulting in a drop within the value of the principle photo voltaic cell element by 2023.

Nineteen Chinese language firms are increasing capability to supply hundreds of thousands of tons, “the almost certainly result’s one other decade of overcapacity and costs rising at marginal manufacturing prices.” Based on lead analyst Andries Wantenaar, polysilicon and due to this fact photo voltaic module costs will proceed to rise in 2022 as provide continues to fall wanting demand. After that, nevertheless, provide will bounce ahead once more as new factories come on-line and costs will fall.

“From January 2023 this can begin to change. Costs will enter a gradual decline as new factories come on-line in China’s fringes. Polysilicon manufacturing capability will develop from 800,000 tonnes at this time to 1.1 million tonnes by the tip of 2022, then to between 1.4 million and 1.7 million tonnes by the tip of 2023.

“Wafer thicknesses have been considerably lowered – going from 175 micrometers to 155 micrometers means a 12.9% discount in polysilicon per watt, which explains why the graph above has a peak polysilicon value on the finish of 2022 versus a peak module value on the finish of 2021 Polysilicon factories are working at a really excessive capability issue of 97%, no less than whereas costs are excessive. Mixed with the very speedy commissioning of latest services, we estimate that 216 GW value of polysilicon can be produced within the first half of 2023, up from 125 GW within the first half of 2022. Which means that polysilicon provides can be have largely caught up with photo voltaic demand and the remainder of the provision chain.”

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Module costs are decided virtually completely by the worth of polysilicon. As polysilicon manufacturing will increase, module costs are anticipated to drop. Whereas disruptive pandemic shutdowns have affected manufacturing, they haven’t resulted in important value will increase for non-polysilicon components corresponding to glass, backsheets, silver paste, and many others.

Some Western polysilicon manufacturing capability is coming again on-line, however could not survive with out tariff safety and incentives like these included within the Biden administration’s Deflation Act. If China’s photo voltaic panels are fully lower off for the US, EU or different international locations, then India and Indonesia could possibly export to Western wafer factories.

LONGi (the world’s largest wafer producer) expects that 1,000 GW might be produced globally every year by 2030. Rethink Vitality predicts that “It gained’t be lengthy earlier than photo voltaic panel manufacturing is overtaken by grid integration as essentially the most urgent constraint on the power transition.”

Featured graphic courtesy of Rethink Vitality.


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