"Actionable Insights to Fuel Your Growth"

Membrane Electrode Assembly Market Size, Share & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Component (Membranes, Gas Diffusion Layers, Gaskets, and Others), and by Application (Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFC), Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC), Electrolyzers, and Others) and Regional Forecast, 2021-2028

Last Updated: May 27, 2024 | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI101346



Play Audio Listen to Audio Version

The global membrane electrode assembly market size was USD 0.34 billion in 2020. The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with membrane electrode assembly witnessing a negative impact on demand across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a lower growth of 12.3% in 2020 compared to the average year-on-year growth during 2017-2019. The market is projected to grow from USD 0.42 billion in 2021 to USD 1.70 billion in 2028 at a CAGR of 22.1% in the 2021-2028 period. The rise in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth, returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over.

The membrane electrode assembly provides sites for chemical reactions occurring inside a fuel cell to convert the fuel into usable electrical power. The assembly includes a gas diffusion layer, 5-layer membrane, and 3-layer membranes, gaskets, or sealing components. These components are fabricated individually and then pressed together at high temperatures and pressures and are in the form of stacks. The performance and stability of fuel cells largely depend on the preparation method of the assembly components.

The membrane electrode assembly serves various applications such as electrolyzer, proton-electron fuel cell, hydrogen or oxygen air fuel cells, direct methanol fuel cells, and others. The growing focus on adapting clean energy and reducing CO2 emissions has propelled the commercialization of membrane electrode assemblies.

Limited Investment Opportunities amid COVID-19 to Impede Market Growth

A global emergency such as coronavirus or COVID-19 pandemic has significantly dented various commercial and industrial operations across the globe. The aftermath of this crisis has also left the economies of various fast-growing countries in turmoil. Nearly all the nations across the world have observed a steep increase in the number of the affected population since the beginning of the current year. The unavailability of any cure or vaccine for the viral infection during the initial stages has led many industry professionals and players to introduce several combat measures to mitigate the impact continuously. Besides, the implications of the pandemic crisis have revealed different types of problems such as shortage of operating staff, deficits in operating incomes, the shutdown of various plants, constrained global trades, and many more, specified by their nature of operations.

Accordingly, the global market has also been moderately affected by the outcome of this unprecedented situation, as various countries have experienced a considerable loss in the total workforce in the various sectors. The unavailability of the skilled workforce coupled with long-spanning shutdowns of manufacturing plants has resulted in a limited output of fuel cells & electrolyzers, hampering the industry growth. For instance, in June 2020, the International Energy Agency (IEA) stated that the hydrogen fuel cell vehicles observed a significant boost before the COVID-19 crisis in 2019 and early 2020s. However, the developments across the industry are now susceptible owing to an unimpressive demonstration of technologies coupled with interruptions in the timelines of low-carbon production projects.

Major renewable and fossil-based energy-producing countries such as China and the U.S. have taken stern actions to impede the growth of the novel coronavirus. Various governments across all the regions have presented stringent action plans to contain the spread of infection. For example, in March 2020, different state administrations across the U.S. announced a lockdown protocol affecting various residential, commercial, and industrial procedures. During the month, different cities & states, including San Francisco, California, New York, Illinois, Connecticut, New Jersey, Louisiana, and many more, implemented stay-at-home orders to limit the population’s exposure to the virus.


Request a Free sample to learn more about this report.

Rising Initiatives of Reducing Harmful Emission is Propelling Market Growth

The imposition of various international standards for reducing greenhouse gas emissions has turned the attention of various automotive manufacturers to new technologies related to electric, hybrid vehicles, or fuel cell vehicles. As a result, several manufactures are developing new environmentally friendly technologies for the automotive sector. For instance, In October 2020, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CISR) and KPIT industry has successfully developed an automotive-grade LT-PEMFC fuel cell stack and successfully ran its trail on a hydrogen fuel cell (HFC) prototype car. The company has brought expertise in stack engineering, including a stack assembly, system integration, control software, electric powertrain, and other components that will enable fuel cell vehicle running. The company believes that using hydrogen fuel cell technology to generate electrical energy will cut the emission of harmful gas that will play a key role in future mobility and is expected to be commercially viable.

Moreover, In February 2020, Hyundai Motor Company has expanded its partnership with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and its support of the DOE Hydrogen and Fuel Cells Program. Hyundai will provide the DOE with five fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) to advance research and development of fuel cell technologies as a part of the agreement. Furthermore, the company aims to address technical barriers and enable hydrogen and fuel cell technologies across applications and sectors.  These factors are expected to drive the global membrane electrode assembly market during the forecast period.


Augmented Technological Innovations Stoked by Government Schemes to Drive Market Growth

Fuel cells & electrolyzers are a viable and crucial technology for transforming energy systems with higher efficiency and less carbon dioxide emission. However, the availability of different resources and different technologies has approached the substantial participation of countries in the development of fuel cell technology. Therefore, the government has supported various collaborative technologies for the R&D and demonstration projects with competitive funding programs. For instance, The German government, along with the industrial sector, has formed a strategic alliance known as the National Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technology Innovation Programme (NIP) to support the development of fuel cell technologies and can be considered the most crucial part of the German roadmap for fuel cells. The alliance works to plan and outline the strategic framework for further development in fuel cell technologies in different applications.

The inter-ministerial National Innovation Programme for hydrogen and fuel cell technology has administrated around USD 28.5 million in annual funding for the mobility application over ten years’ duration. In addition, the government has also worked strategically to spur the improvement in mass production and performance in the fuel cell industry.  Hence, a significant development in fuel cell technology and government initiatives for technological development propels the global membrane electrode assembly market.

Rising Initiatives for Fuel Cell in Automotive Industry to Support Growth

The automotive industry contributes to global emissions, attributing the dependency on fossil fuel as a primary energy source. The increasing initiatives for zero-emission have inclined customers to adopt zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs) or electric vehicles (EVs), which commence as a probability for fuel cell electric vehicles, creating opportunities for the market. Automotive manufacturers are making huge investments for developing efficient and high-power vehicles, which creates significant opportunities for fuel cell technology. Because of this factor, market opportunities could be significantly accelerated by the diverse supply of vehicles and models by several automakers and committing the high production volume. 

In addition to the supply side factor, the increasing government initiative for clean energy solutions empowers the growth of fuel cell technology. In July 2020, The European Union pushed the EU hydrogen strategy to support clean energy by increasing European funding and allocating approximately USD 825 billion and an entire transition plan. The European Union has also provided a detailed guide regarding investments, market creation, research, and development, encouraging industries to adopt energy-efficient vehicles.

Environmental policies such as emission limits have known initiatives for automakers to invest in clean vehicle development and production. For example, In November 2020, Volvo Group and Daimler truck have planned to develop and produce commercialized fuel cell systems for heavy-duty trucks and other applications as an initial step for sustainable transportation. This is expected to spur the membrane electrode assembly market growth during the forecast period.


Durability Challenges Associated with Fuel Cells Likely to Hinder Market Growth

The fabrication of the MEA correlates with the performance of the stack as it’s a key component of the fuel cell & electrolyzers where electrochemical reactions occur. It has been recognized that defects, such as higher interfacial resistance between the catalyst layers or the crack in the catalyst layer during the MEAs manufacturing process, influence the stack degradation. In addition to the degradation issue, high cost remains another major challenge for the market.

Various studies and demonstrations have been carried out, resulting in degradation in the frequent start-up and shut-down, decreasing maximum power density or nearly random power load cycling, which confronts the durability issues in the practical load conditions and hampers the commercial viability of fuel cell technology.

Additionally, the humidification of the MEA causes lower conductivity and leads to an increment of resistance in the membrane and catalyst layer, resulting in the membrane's chemical degradation. This mechanism of degradation results in membrane thinning and lowering of mechanical strength, causing performance loss or cell failure, which may hamper the product demand. However, various research has been driven for developing fault identification in fuel cell technology. For instance, the FRA methodologies have been applied to the research and development of PEMFCs, which analyze the different degradation mechanisms that affect the performance of PEMFC. Further, Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy (EIS) was used to support the optimization of components.


By Component Analysis

Membranes Segment to Grow at High Pace

Based on the components, the market is segmented into membranes, gas diffusion layers, gaskets, and others.

Among these, the membranes segment accounted for the major membrane electrode assembly market share of the global market in 2020. The membrane component acts as an electric insulator in the assembly. The component provides strong mechanical, chemical, and electrochemical stability in a harsh chemical-rich environment over a range of operating conditions and also offer long life, with low reactant permeability.

The gas diffusion layers segment is expected to experience considerable growth during the forecast period, as these layers act as porous media for transporting the reactant from the flow field and evenly dispersing it over the catalyst sites. 

The others segment includes components such as ink, acid wash, hot pressing, and cutting & sitting methods.

By Application Analysis

An Infographic Representation of Membrane Electrode Assemblies MEA Market

To get information on various segments, share your queries with us

Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell (PEMFC) Segment Accounted for Largest Market Share

Based on the end-user, the market is categorized into proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC), direct methanol fuel cell, electrolyzers, and others.

The proton exchange membrane fuel cell segment accounted for the major share in the market in 2020. The proton exchange membrane fuel cell is widely used in stationary applications for power systems and portable devices. In addition, many manufacturers use PEM fuel cells in automobile, bus, commercial vehicles demonstration.

The electrolyzer is also the key segment of the market, as it is considered as one of the most reliable technology for producing green hydrogen in a non-polluting manner and uses renewable energy as an electrical source. The application produces hydrogen directly at the location and is comparatively the cheapest method.

The others segment includes applications such as polymer electrolyte fuel cells, alkaline fuel cells,  hydrogen or oxygen air fuel cells, and many more.


Asia Pacific Membrane Electrode Assembly (MEA) Market Size, 2020 (USD Billion)

To get more information on the regional analysis of this market, Request a Free sample

The market has been analyzed across five key regions, namely, North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and the Rest of the World. 

Asia Pacific is the major region in the global market. In terms of value, the region held a share of 53.4% in 2020. In the Asia Pacific, the rising demand for electric vehicles, various frameworks for promoting renewable energy and are expected to aggregate the membrane electrode assemblies market due to the general consideration of fuel cell and hydrogen technologies for achieving the goal. The Fuel Cell Commercialization Conference of Japan (FCCJ), a private-sector organization, has promoted the fuel cell technology for creating an FCEV commercialization scenario and accumulated the number of FCEV to be around 2 million by 2025, covering most of the cities in Japan

North America is projected to grow exponentially during the forecast period due to the commercial introduction of fuel cell technology and substantial investments in the research & development program of fuel cell technologies. The U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) fuel cell technologies administration has set goals for promoting the widespread commercialization of fuel cell technologies through technological development, demonstration, and diverse efforts to overcome institutional and market challenges. Additionally, various states are posing action plans for diminishing the carbon footprint.

In Europe, the focus on developing high power-efficient vehicles and promoting hydrogen-based transpiration is aggregating the membrane electrode assemblies market. The various initiatives by government bodies have turned the spotlight on the development and commercialization of fuel cell technologies. For instance, the GAIA project funded by European Union (EU), which focuses on developing high power and high current density automotive MEAs, has the objective of a significant enhancement to the MEAs designs that satisfy the cost, durability, and operational targets set by the fuel cell. Additionally, the project incorporates OEMs, leading industry and research organizations, expertise in fuel cell science and technology for developing higher performance MEAs.

The Rest of the World held a minimum share of the market in 2020. Several countries, such as South Africa, Dubai, and Brazil, have shown significant interest in testing and deploying FCEVs over the coming years. Additionally, the countries are also investing substantially to develop hydrogen infrastructure and support the transition in general mobility. For instance, in February 2021, South Africa has expected to start manufacturing and commercializing fuel cell technologies. The government has been working with the private sector industry analysis, academia, and various partners for developing hydrogen fuel cell technology and energy storage technology. This drift in hydrogen energy is expected to propel the market. Additionally, this work also serves the establishment of new uses and a new market for the platinum metal group, which has huge availability in the country.


Ballard Power Systems to Focus on Expanding Its Product Line and Utilize Its Channels to Market New Products

Currently, Ballard Power Systems, Johnson Matthey, BASF SE, W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc. and Plug Power Inc. are the key players in the market, accounting for a dominant share in 2020. Supportive government initiatives for the growing renewable industry and an increasing number of mergers and acquisitions have led to intense competition in the market.

Ballard Power Systems is engaged in developing and provider of innovative fuel cell solutions for markets such as automotive, marine, rail, material handling, and others. The company’s product portfolio is categorized into two main segments: fuel cell power products and technology solutions.  The formulation and integration division for membrane assembly comes under the product development and provides expertise and resources supporting advancing fuel cell technology. The company operates three facilities in Burnaby, Canada, which have a combined capacity of producing one million MEAs and fuel stacks annually. For instance, On September 28, 2020, Ballard Power Systems decided to expand its manufacturing capacity to produce membrane electrode assemblies by six times at its headquarter facility in Vancouver.


  • Ballard Power Systems (Canada)

  • Johnson Matthey (U.K.)

  • Danish Power Systems (Denmark)

  • BASF SE (Germany)

  • W.L. Gore & Associates, Inc. (U.S.)

  • Giner Inc. (U.S.)

  • FuelCellsEtc (U.S.)

  • IRD Fuel Cells (Denmark)

  • Greenerity GmBH (Germany)

  • Plug Power Inc. (U.S.)

  • Hyplat (South Africa)

  • The Chemours Company (U.S.)

  • Sainergy (Georgia)

  • Yangtze Energy Technologies, Inc. (Taiwan)

  • Wuhan WUT New Energy Co., Ltd (China)

  • YuanBo Engineering Co., Ltd (China)


  • January 2021 - Johnson Matthey and SFC Energy AG sign a new multi-million-pound agreement for the supply of Membrane Electrode Assemblies (MEAs). JM will supply at least 400,000 Membrane Electrode Assemblies. The agreement is starting in February 2021 for a duration of over three years.

  • September 2020 - Ballard Power Systems decided to expand its manufacturing capacity for the production of membrane electrode assemblies (MEA) by six times at its headquarter facility in Vancouver, Canada. The upgraded capacity produces 6 million MEAs annually, equivalent to approximately 1.66 Gigawatts. The upgrade of capacity has made Ballard’s Vancouver facility the largest fuel cell production unit operating across the globe for commercial vehicles.


To gain extensive insights into the market, Request for Customization

The market report presents a comprehensive industry assessment by offering valuable insights, facts, industry-related information, and historical data. Several methodologies and approaches have been adopted to make meaningful assumptions and views to formulate the market research report. Furthermore, the report covers a detailed analysis and information as per market segments, including components, applications, and regions, helping our readers to get a comprehensive overview of the global industry.




Study Period


Base Year


Estimated Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



Value (USD Billion)


By Component, Application, and Region



By Component

  • Membranes

  • Gas Diffusion later (GDL)

  • Gaskets

  • Others 

By Application

  • Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFC)

  • Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFC)

  • Electrolyzers

    • Alkaline Electrolyzer

    • Proton Exchange Membrane Electrolyzer

    • Solid Oxide Electrolyzer

  • Others

By Region

  • North America (By Component, Application, and Country)

    • U.S.

    • Canada

  • Europe (By Component, Application, and Country)

    • Germany

    • U.K.

    • France

    • Italy

    • Sweden

    • Rest of Europe

  • Asia Pacific (By Component, Application, and Country)

    • China

    • Japan

    • South Korea

    • Rest of Asia Pacific

  • Rest of World (By Component, Application, and Country)

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 0.34 billion in 2020 and is projected to surpass USD 1.70 billion by 2028.

The Asia Pacific dominated the market in terms of share in 2020.

Registering a CAGR of 22.1%, the market will exhibit a decent growth rate during the forecast period (2021-2028).

By component, the membrane segment is anticipated to hold a significant share and dominate the market during the forecast period.

The rising initiatives for fuel cell in the automotive industry is the key factor driving the market growth.

Ballard Power Systems, Johnson Matthey, Danish Power Systems, BASF SE, and W.L. Gore & Associates, Inc., among others, are the key participants operating in the market.

The reports available on our website have multiple options that are easy to access, and the sample reports are just a click away.

Seeking Comprehensive Intelligence on Different Markets?
Get in Touch with Our Experts

Speak to an Expert
  • 2017-2028
  • 2020
  • 2017-2019
  • 185

Personalize this Research

  • Granular Research on Specified Regions or Segments
  • Companies Profiled based on User Requirement
  • Broader Insights Pertaining to a Specific Segment or Region
  • Breaking Down Competitive Landscape as per Your Requirement
  • Other Specific Requirement on Customization
Request Customization Banner

Client Testimonials

“We are quite happy with the methodology you outlined. We really appreciate the time your team has spent on this project, and the efforts of your team to answer our questions.”

- One of the largest & renowned medical research centers based in the U.S. on a report on the U.S. NIPT Market.

“Thanks a million. The report looks great!”

- Feedback from a consultant on a report on the U.S. Beef Market.

“Thanks for the excellent report and the insights regarding the lactose market.”

- Brazil based company specializing in production of protein ingredients.

“I liked the report; would it be possible to send me the PPT version as I want to use a few slides in an internal presentation that I am preparing.”

- Global Digital Services Agency on a report on the Global Luxury Goods Market.

“This report is really well done and we really appreciate it! Again, I may have questions as we dig in deeper. Thanks again for some really good work.”

- U.S.-based biotechnology company focussing on treatment of chronic pain.

“Kudos to your team. Thank you very much for your support and agility to answer our questions.”

- Europe-based provider of solutions to automate data centre operations.

“We appreciate you and your team taking out time to share the report and data file with us, and we are grateful for the flexibility provided to modify the document as per request. This does help us in our business decision making. We would be pleased to work with you again, and hope to continue our business relationship long into the future.”

- India-based manufacturer of industrial and specialty intermediates with a strong global presence.

“I want to first congratulate you on the great work done on the Medical Platforms project. Thank you so much for all your efforts.”

- One of the largest cosmetics company in the world.

“Thank you very much. I really appreciate the work your team has done. I feel very comfortable recommending your services to some of the other startups that I’m working with, and will likely establish a good long partnership with you.”

- U.S. based startup operating in the cultivated meat market.

“We received the below report on the U.S. market from you. We were very satisfied with the report.”

- Global hearing aids manufacturer.

“I just finished my first pass-through of the report. Great work! Thank you!”

- U.S. based solar racking solutions provider.

“Thanks again for the great work on our last partnership. We are ramping up a new project to understand the imaging and imaging service and distribution market in the U.S.”

- World’s leading advisory firm.

“We feel positive about the results. Based on the presented results, we will do strategic review of this new information and might commission a detailed study on some of the modules included in the report after end of the year. Overall we are very satisfied and please pass on the praise to the team. Thank you for the co-operation!”

- Germany based machine construction company.

“Thank you very much for the very good report. I have another requirement on cutting tools, paper crafts and decorative items.”

- Japanese manufacturing company of stationery products.

“We are happy with the professionalism of your in-house research team as well as the quality of your research reports. Looking forward to work together on similar projects”

- One of the Leading Food Companies in Germany

“We appreciate the teamwork and efficiency for such an exhaustive and comprehensive report. The data offered to us was exactly what we were looking for. Thank you!”

- Intuitive Surgical

“I recommend Fortune Business Insights for their honesty and flexibility. Not only that they were very responsive and dealt with all my questions very quickly but they also responded honestly and flexibly to the detailed requests from us in preparing the research report. We value them as a research company worthy of building long-term relationships.”

- Major Food Company in Japan

“Well done Fortune Business Insights! The report covered all the points and was very detailed. Looking forward to work together in the future”

- Ziering Medical

“It has been a delightful experience working with you guys. Thank you Fortune Business Insights for your efforts and prompt response”

- Major Manufacturer of Precision Machine Parts in India

“I had a great experience working with Fortune Business Insights. The report was very accurate and as per my requirements. Very satisfied with the overall report as it has helped me to build strategies for my business”

- Hewlett-Packard

“This is regarding the recent report I bought from Fortune Business insights. Remarkable job and great efforts by your research team. I would also like to thank the back end team for offering a continuous support and stitching together a report that is so comprehensive and exhaustive”

- Global Management Consulting Firm

“Please pass on our sincere thanks to the whole team at Fortune Business Insights. This is a very good piece of work and will be very helpful to us going forward. We know where we will be getting business intelligence from in the future.”

- UK-based Start-up in the Medical Devices Sector

“Thank you for sending the market report and data. It looks quite comprehensive and the data is exactly what I was looking for. I appreciate the timeliness and responsiveness of you and your team.”

- One of the Largest Companies in the Defence Industry
We use cookies to enhance your experience. By continuing to visit this site you agree to our use of cookies . Privacy.