Polysilicon Enables Strong PV Growth

Bernreuter Research: Feedstock sufficient for 27.5 gigawatts in 2011

Johannes Bernreuter, head of Bernreuter Research
Johannes Bernreuter, head of Bernreuter Research – Image: Wilhelm Breuer

Würzburg (Germany), October 27, 2010 – Polysilicon production in 2010 will be sufficient to manufacture solar modules made of crystalline silicon cells with a total power of 17 gigawatts (GW). In 2011, silicon supply for the photovoltaic (PV) industry will even be equivalent to 27.5 GW of crystalline modules, according to the latest forecast of the market research firm Bernreuter Research.

The total power of crystalline modules produced annually is a good indicator of the PV market size: in five of the last six years, the production volume differed from the power of all newly installed crystalline and thin-film solar modules worldwide by less than ten percent.

Many analysts underestimate PV demand

„Although most analysts only predict between 13 and 20 GW of new PV installations in 2011, we do not expect a massive oversupply of polysilicon next year,“ says Johannes Bernreuter, head of Bernreuter Research and lead author of the current market research report The Who’s Who of Solar Silicon Production.

Bernreuter Research has evaluated more than 40 analyst forecasts made on the newly installed PV capacities from 2008 through 2010; almost all of them are below the actual results in 2008 and 2009 as well as the likely outcome in 2010. „The forecasts deviate from the actual value by up to 50 percent downwards,“ Bernreuter explains. „Obviously, demand is more elastic than many assume.“

Bernreuter will present the new results at the 11th Forum Solarpraxis in Berlin on November 12, 2010.

About Bernreuter Research

Bernreuter Research was founded in 2008 by Johannes Bernreuter, one of the most reputable photovoltaic journalists in Germany, to publish technology-focused market research reports. As early as 2001, he wrote his first analysis of the upcoming polysilicon bottleneck and alternative production processes. In 2010 Bernreuter and his co-author Frank Haugwitz, a Bejing-based photovoltaics consultant, issued The Who’s Who of Solar Silicon Production, which industry experts deem the most comprehensive and accurate polysilicon report on the market.