1 Implementation of PV systems 3
2 The PV industry 23
3 Policy and regulatory framework for deployment 31
4 Summary of trends 39
PV technology note 40
The International Energy Agency (IEA), founded in 1974, is
an autonomous body within the framework of the Organization for
Economic ooperation and Development (OECD). The IEA carries out
a comprehensive programme of energy cooperation among its 26 member
countries and with the participation of the European Commission.
The IEA Photovoltaic Power Systems Programme (IEA PVPS) is one of the collaborative research and development agreements within the IEA and was established in 1993. The mission of the programme is to “enhance the international collaboration efforts, which accelerate the development and deployment of photovoltaic solar energy as a significant and sustainable renewable energy option”.
In order to achieve this, the participants in the Programme have undertaken a variety of joint research projects in applications of PV power systems. The overall programme is headed by an Executive Committee, comprising one representative from each country, which designates distinct ‘Tasks’, which may be research projects or activity areas.
This report has been prepared under Task 1, which facilitates the exchange and dissemination of information arising from the overall IEA PVPS Programme.
The IEA PVPS Programme is pleased to present the 14th edition of the international survey report on Trends in Photovoltaic Applications. 2008 has been a turbulent year characterised both by dramatic industry and market expansion in a number of countries as well as first impacts
from the financial crisis. Market growth was particularly strong in Korea, Spain, Italy, France and Portugal. In absolute terms, the market is dominated by Spain and Germany, followed by Italy, US, Korea and Japan. In total, more than 5.5 GW of photovoltaic power systems were installed during 2008 in IEA PVPS countries; raising the total installed capacity to 13.4 GW in those countries. The share of grid-connected, centralized applications grew to comprise 35% of the grid-connected cumulative installed capacity. On the supply side, remarkable growth can be observed along the whole value chain, in particular for silicon feedstock production and thin film technologies. The production of photovoltaic modules in IEA PVPS nonmember countries has continued to increase strongly. Interest and public support continues to be high in many countries and the possible role of photovoltaics in the future power supply is getting ever more attention. The global financial crisis has reached the photovoltaic sector during its strongest growth phase, leading to partial overcapacities, expected drastic cost reductions and a more difficult environment for investment in technology development and new production facilities. In spite of these difficulties, the sustainable nature of photovoltaics and the need for a clean and secure energy supply keep this technology amongst the most prospective ones. Government support for photovoltaics has thus generally been increased. Keeping track of all the developments in and around the PV sector on the global level is a challenge which the IEA PVPS network is happy to address. I trust that this new edition of Trends in Photovoltaic Applications will find many interested readers and I would like to thank all experts who have contributed to this report.
Chairman, IEA PVPS Programme