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Solar and wind chargers market helped by laptops and mobiles

Battery chargers using solar or wind power are paving the way for market opportunities in the European renewable chargers market, according to analyst Frost & Sullivan.

With more and more portable technology being used, green battery chargers powered by wind and solar can meet demands for power on demand and mobility.

Frost & Sullivan’s Opportunities for Green Battery Chargers, expects the green charger market to grow at a CAGR of 15% from 2008 to 2014.

The growth rate is expected to be slow in 2010 due to the recession and prices for these solar and wind powered chargers being high as compared to conventional chargers. Moreover, awareness levels are still low and only a select few customers prefer such products.

Some chargers such as wind and piezoelectric are still in pilot or predevelopment stage.

Growth is expected to increase towards the end of the forecast period with increase in mobility, awareness and environmental issues. The types of battery chargers covered in this research are solar chargers and wind chargers.

Solar chargers

The most widely researched and developed technology is the solar battery chargers. These devices have high degree of flexibility and highest efficiency as compared to any other green charger. Solar battery chargers currently occupy majority share (more than 90%) of the European Green battery charger market.

Many Chinese and Taiwanese players exist in this market supplying cheap and unbranded chargers that undermine the leadership of well-established Western brands. Probably the oldest and the most widely exploited source for renewable energy, wind chargers are highly popular for their sleek design and low cost, Frost & Sullivan says.

"The future of on-demand, clean and inexhaustible power lies in the development of renewable chargers," notes Frost & Sullivan Senior Research Analyst Vikas Ravindran. "With the influx of personal electronics and portable applications along with the growing emphasis of environmentally friendly technology, green chargers are likely to be a stepping stone towards the envisioned future."

Lower efficiency

However, a major challenge faced by the renewable charger industry is the inability to meet the efficiency of a conventional charger. The renewable charger is moderately efficient with low power output and at present, can be used only for portable applications, thereby limiting the manufactures' scope in the market.

Companies should also ensure that the prices and competence are at par with the conventional chargers to garner a substantial share in the market.

"Aggressive promotion campaigns will also help the manufacturers' establish a considerable amount of visibility for their product and therefore garner a significant market share for themselves," concludes Ravindran.

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Energy storage including Fuel cells  •  Photovoltaics (PV)  •  Wind power