The Fuel Cell Today Industry Review 2013 reports annual fuel cell system shipments (excluding toys and education kits) in 2012 were 45,700 – growing by 86% compared to 2011, led by increases in the stationary sector. In term of megawatts, the fuel cell industry exceeded 150 MW for the first time in 2012 reaching a total of 166.7 MW.
The Fuel Cell Industry Review 2013 forecasts shipments in 2013 reaching 66,800 units worldwide, growing by 46% compared with 2012. This continued success follows on from the growth seen between 2011 and 2012. Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFC) are again expected to lead 2013 unit shipments, accounting for 88% of the total, and regionally Asia to dominate with a 76% share of total units.
Fuel cells are becoming well established in a number of markets where they are now recognised as a better technology option than conventional internal combustion engine generators or batteries. Despite a shortfall in expected shipments from the portable sector, 2012 demonstrated continued growth in unit shipments of fuel cells for transportation and a significant increase in unit shipments of stationary fuel cells, leading to an increase overall. The stationary sector is by far the stand-out performer for fuel cell technology, finding application across all scales: from small-scale grid-connected micro-combined heat and power units for residential use, to off-grid backup power systems providing uninterruptible power supplies to critical infrastructure, to prime power for buildings and even to megawatt-scale installations designed as grid-connected power stations. A special feature in the Review focusses on financial support for stationary fuel cells in California.
In the Review Fuel Cell Today provides an overview of recent developments relating to fuel cell technology, including a commentary on unit shipments and megawatts shipped during the period 2009 to 2012 (supported by data tables), and publishes a forecast for 2013. The outlook chapter discusses Fuel Cell Today’s views on fuel cell adoption over the next three years.