Growth Continues for China’s PV Glass Industry
The comprehensive competitiveness of China’s photovoltaics (PV) industry has continued to improve in recent years, and the whole PV industrial chain has showed the rapid development trend. China has formed a relatively complete solar PV industrial chain, including the production of polycrystalline silicon, manufacturing of solar cells and modules, the installation of PV systems, and the related supporting industries.
In 2012, the cumulative PV installed capacity was 8.3 GW in China; as of the end of August, the PV installed capacity reached 8.98 GW in China. It is estimated that China’s PV installed capacity will reach 9.5 GW by 2013, with a new increase of 1.2 GW.
On the premise that the proportion of crystalline silicon cells in PV is 85%, the demand volume for the crystalline silicon cell will be 1.02 GW by 2013. According to the 12th Five-Year Plan, China will increase about 10 GW of PV installed capacity per year after 2014; then, the crystalline silicon cell will have the average demand of 8.5 GW. As per 100 w of cell module will use about 1 M2 of patterned glass, China’s ultra-white patterned glass will exceed 102 million M2 by 2013. According to the 12th-Five-Year Plan, China’s average demand volume for ultra-white patterned glass will reach 850 million M2 in the next few years.
Compared with developed countries, China’s thin-film cells have a very low ratio (about 6%) in total PV output. If calculating by the new increased PV installed capacity of 1.2 GW in 2013, the demand volume for thin-film cells will be 0.072 GW this year; if calculating by the 100W of thin-film cells with 1.5 M2 of TCO glass, China’s TCO glass demand volume will be 10.8 million M2 by 2013. According to the 12th Five-Year Plan, China will have the demand volume for TCO glass of about 90 million M2 in the next few years.
In China, there is strong demand for PV anti-reflective glass; the proportion that PV cells use the anti-reflective glass is expected to rise to 80% by 2015 from 35% currently. It is estimated that the domestic demand volume will be respectively 68.67 million and 102.14 million M2 during 2013 to 2015, but the proved production capacity of domestic enterprises is limited: the effective production capacity was respectively 27 million, 38 million and 54 million M2 during 2011 to 2013, which was less than the market demand volume in the same year.
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