The U.S. solar PV market is poised to grow significantly during 2015 to 2022. Its installed capacity would surpass 59 GW by 2022. The main driving factors of the market comprise favorable regulations, state incentives, and federal subsidies. Solar PV causes less harm to the environment and has been subsidized.
Rising installations in the nation, especially in California, are causing a steep fall in equipment costs. Moreover, the maintenance of solar PV modules is cheaper than other power generating units. This will steer the U.S. solar PV market in the forthcoming years.
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Solar PV demand is also anticipated to rise due to the availability of varied module sizes. Solar radiations across the country are very high and an added advantage. Prices of raw materials for manufacturing solar cells have reduced due to technological innovations and manufacturing improvements. This would also aid the market in the future.
However, the U.S. solar PV market is predicted to be adversely affected by discontinuation of subsidies, slated to begin in 2017. Installations will drastically fall after December 31st, 2016, when the Investment Tax Credit (ITC) subsidy expires.
The market is fragmented according to applications and states. Application segments are utility, residential, and non-residential. Utility, with over half of the total installations, was the largest segment in 2014.
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Non-residential would grow at a CAGR of 16% from 2015 to 2022. Incentives and subsidies will be the key segment contributors. Residential applications are estimated to grow on account of awareness regarding environmental protection. However, lack of subsidies post 2016 may lead to sharp demand reduction.
States in the U.S. solar PV market comprise California, New Jersey, Arizona, Nevada, North Carolina, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Texas, Colorado, and New York. California, with over 49% shares, was the leader in 2014. Growing installations in utility and residential applications have fueled this dominance. Tax subsidies, high exposure to solar radiations, and favorable federal regulations are its other drivers.
California was followed by Arizona and New Jersey. North Carolina will expand at the fastest rate in the next seven years. Conventional power prices in this state are more than those in Louisiana, Washington, and Kentucky. This results in higher residential installations in North Carolina.
Notable participants in the U.S. solar PV market include Alps Technology, Auxin Solar, First Power, Suniva Inc., and SunPower Corporation. Technological advancements (through research and developments) are a growth strategy adopted by them.
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