Five percent growth for global BoS, reaching $21 billion in 2019

In its PV Balance of System Equipment 2015 report, IHS forecasts the Asian markets, comprising China, India and “other large” markets will account for 44% of BoS demand in 2019, with EMEA following with 34% and Americas at 21%. IHS notes that Asian markets are likely to continue to be, “dominated by niche BoS suppliers.”

In the EMEA region, IHS predicts that the commercial rooftop market is a leading demand driver, accounting for 11.5 GW of BoS components in 2019. IHS notes, however, that Asian markets remain of interest to BoS suppliers.

“The Asian market is also highly attractive for BoS suppliers, especially in the ground-mount mounting market, where local steel manufacturers are very active presently, and this creates a huge opportunity for experienced PV mounting suppliers from EMEA and the Americas to expand abroad,” said Cormac Gilligan, senior solar analyst for IHS Technology.

The International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) has also noted the significant variation between geographically diverse markets in terms of BoS. In its recent REthinking Energy report, IRENA noted that BoS cost reductions have been crucial in achieving solar LCOE reductions it remains a diverse market.

“Improving the competiveness of PV will therefore increasingly depend on the extent that BoS costs can be reduced. While the trend in BoS costs is downwards at present, this is a diverse area with significant national variance,” the IRENA report authors noted.

Market breakdown

IHS reports that the largest component of BoS market will be structural components meaning trackers, ground and roof mounting systems, which will reach 45% of the total BoS market. This will be worth $9.3 billion in 2019. In line with the growth of the commercial rooftop segment and stable residential market, IHS predicts roof mountings will grow at an annual rate of 5%.

The electrical component of BoS (EBoS) will grow faster than the structural segment, tips IHS, totaling $3 billion in 2019.

“The EBoS market is set to grow rapidly, primarily because these components will handle higher voltages and assist in arc-fault detection, isolation and other health and safety requirements,” said Gilligan.

AC cabling and combiner boxes are not included in the IHS study.