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The global solar tracker market size was USD 16.11 billion in 2020. The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with tracker installations witnessing a negative demand shock across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the market exhibited a growth rate of 26.2% in 2020 as compared to the average year-on-year growth during 2017-2019. The market is projected to grow from USD 18.90 billion in 2021 to USD 54.23 billion in 2028 at an impressive CAGR of 16.3% during the forecast period. The rise in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth, returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over.
Trackers are devices deployed along with solar panels to maximize energy capture, and therefore they boost the efficiency of the overall power generation process. Tracking systems enable movement of the panels in accordance with the direction of sunlight, during which they decrease the angle of incidence between the panel and the striking sunrays. This leads to more efficient operations as compared to solar panels installed without tracking systems. These devices can be used along with various panel technologies, including parabolic troughs, fresnel reflectors, solar panels, and lenses.
Supply Chain Disruptions Owing to National Lockdowns to Impede Solar Tracker Market Growth
The global health emergency caused by the spread of the COVID-19 had led to a negative impact on the global economy. The solar tracker industry that has been heavily dependent on China and India was adversely affected by the virus. These countries form the base of solar projects and leading house players such as Trina Solar, Jinko Solar, Arctech Solar, Soltec, Scorpius trackers, and others. These companies were shut during the lockdown due to disruption in the supply chain and the unavailability of raw materials.
Moreover, the U.S. that stood out as a dominant force in the solar tracker industry also faced disruptions in supply chains due to lack of labor, and nationwide lockdown slowed the manufacturing velocity. However, since the restrictions have been lifted, solar PV installations have surged exponentially across the globe. This resulted in solar tracker companies such as NEXTracker registering their highest ever sales in the latter part of 2020.
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Green Energy Targets to Fuel Investments in Solar Industry
As the world moves towards reducing carbon emissions, countries are contributing to it by setting respective green energy targets. For instance, Brazil aims to have 42.5% of its primary energy supply renewable at the end of 2023. According to the brief carbon analysis, the UK government aims to have about half its electricity from renewables in 2025. Germany is also on its path to account for renewables for 65% of its total energy by 2030. In Asia, China plans to achieve 16% of its energy from renewables by 2030. Following investments and growth in the country, the renewable energy sector is expected to hold a 26% share and surpass the set target.
Power Source Integrating Technologies Hold Immense Growth Opportunity
The virtual power plants (VPP) and distributed energy generation (DEG) systems are the modern-day technologies that integrate the various power sources and lead to operational advantages and are cost-effective. These power plants and energy generation systems majorly focus on utilizing renewables such as solar energy and wind energy in the country's power mix. The success of these technologies in Europe and North America has now led to them being implemented in Asia Pacific. With their success, solar installations are expected to surge and therefore open doors for the tracker industry.
Growing Adoption of Renewable Sources for Power Generation to Boost Market
The humongous growth in population witnessed over the past decade has directly impacted the amount of power being demanded and generated. The power generation capacity per country has increased at a very healthy rate. Renewable energy sources that help reduce carbon emissions and act as an economical source of everyday power are being looked upon as the best possible replacement for conventional power sources such as coal and oil products. At present, renewable sources account for around 29% of the total electricity generation across the globe. It is expected to rise considerably in the upcoming years and boost the market. For instance, in 2015, the global solar energy installed capacity stood at 217.34 GW, increasing to 578.55 GW in 4 years.
Increased Efficiency of Operation with Tracker Installation to Drive Market Growth
Solar farms and individual solar installations equipped with tracking systems have higher efficiency than simple solar installations. An increase in time for direct exposure to sunlight is the major differentiating factor between the two. Also, these systems tend to make more efficient use of the space, which is equally required for fixed-tilt systems and moving systems. These factors, along with the availability of single-axis and dual-axis trackers, provide customers with options to choose from and are expected to drive the global market growth.
Heavy Capital Investment and Lack of Required Infrastructure Poses Threat to Market Growth
The key restraint for the market is the initial heavy capital investments that are required to be made for installing these devices. Also, the lack of necessary infrastructure is the other factor that slows down investment in the market. In regions such as the Asia Pacific and Europe, the lack of awareness regarding the advantages and increased preference for fixed-tilt installations over tracker installations has hampered growth.
Increasing Solar Photovoltaic Installations Will Drive Growth of Segment
Based on type, the market is segmented into solar photovoltaic and concentrated solar power.
Concentrated solar power (CSP) technology uses mirrors to accumulate the sunrays and focus on a single point. As a result, only dual-axis trackers are preferred in these installations.
The solar photovoltaic installations are very large compared to concentrated solar power, which has been installed in some specific countries only.
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Economic Feasibility and Delivery of Expected Results to Drive Single Axis Segment Growth
Trackers are available in two types, namely single-axis and dual-axis trackers.
The single-axis trackers move to and fro, following the sunlight. On the other hand, dual-axis trackers enable the movement of panels along both horizontal and vertical axes. The majority of the installations carried across the globe prefer single-axis trackers as these are sufficient to generate the required power, are economically feasible, and have less complex operations than dual-axis trackers.
The dual-axis trackers have a major presence across CSP projects, which are very low in number.
Increasing Solar-Grid Integration by Utilities Will Fuel the Growth of Utility Segment
In terms of application, the market is segmented into utility and non-utility.
The utility segment is expected to lead the market due to rising solar grid integrations that have become common in many countries. The standalone systems and the rooftop solar installation are found to have fixed-tilt, eliminating the use of trackers. Further, the introduction of DEG and VPP technologies, which work on the concept of decentralized power, is also expected to attract investments for solar devices, as per the market analysis.
North America Solar Tracker Market Size, 2020 (USD Billion)
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North America is expected to remain at the forefront in the global market of solar trackers during the forecast period. The U.S. with maximum solar tracker deployment for operational efficiency of the installed panels is likely to aid in the demand for the product. The market size in North America stood at USD 9.99 billion in 2020.
Latin American countries such as Brazil and Mexico have emerged as the major importers of solar technologies trackers. Out of the total solar tracker shipments globally in 2020, more than half were being done for North America.
The demand for solar power has increased at a healthy rate in Europe. Countries like Italy, UK, Germany, and Spain have been the front runners in increasing solar penetration in the country’s overall power mix. This trend, along with ambitious green energy targets, poses enormous growth opportunities for the market in the region.
Asia Pacific is the production hub for trackers as 40% of the global capacity of trackers is manufactured in China. India, China, and the other Southeast Asian countries are expected to boost their renewable energy capacity in the coming years, creating huge demand for trackers. South Africa holds the lion’s share of the market in the Middle East and Africa region, which is expected to witness healthy growth over the forecast period with contracts for solar power to be commissioned.
NEXTracker, Soltec, and Arctech Solar Are Among the Leading Players in the Market
The competitive landscape of this market depicts a market dominated by tracker manufacturers such as NEXTracker, Soltec, Arctech Solar. NEXTracker has the maximum solar tracker market share in the global market, with the company acquiring contracts from different countries in every region. A well-established supply chain, customer preference, and an established brand name have been the factors for the company's success. The market also includes other key players such as Array Technologies, Exosun, and Solar Steel, increasing their customer reach and establishing a strong footprint in the market. This is expected to lead towards a competitive market for tracker sales in the forthcoming years.
An Infographic Representation of Solar Tracker Market
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The global solar tracker market report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as leading companies, products, and upcoming product developments. Besides this, it offers insights into the market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the aforementioned factors, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the growth of the market over recent years.
Value (USD Billion) and Volume (MW)
By Type; By Movement; By Application; and By Geography
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 16.11 billion in 2020.
The global market size is projected to reach USD 54.23 billion in 2028.
Registering a CAGR of 16.3%, the market will exhibit healthy growth during the forecast period (2021-2028).
The single-axis segment is expected to lead this market during the forecast period.
The increasing investment in solar power would drive the market. However, the high capital cost may restrain growth in the forecast period.
The market in the region stood at USD 9.99 billion in 2020.
Nextracker, Array Technologies, and Soltec are the top companies in the market.
The deployment of trackers in the solar industry directly results in solar farms harnessing more energy, leading to the deployment of efficient systems.
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