Microinverters and DC Power Optimizers to Reach Nearly $2 Billion in Annual Revenue by 2020

1978

Navigant Research expects revenue from microinverters and DC optimizers to grow from $308 million in 2013 to more than $1.9 billion in 2020. Navigant forecasts that a total of 52.7GW of MLPE technologies will be installed between 2013 and 2020.

According to a new report from Navigant Research, revenue from microinverters and DC optimizers will grow from $308 million in 2013 to more than $1.9 billion in 2020. Navigant forecasts that a total of 52.7GW of MLPE technologies will be installed between 2013 and 2020.

Microinverters and DC optimizers, commonly referred to as module-level power electronics (MLPEs), increase the energy harvested by solar PV modules. They also reduce the levelized cost of electricity by converting or conditioning power at the module level. As a result, microinverters and DC optimizers are two of the most disruptive technologies in the solar PV sector today. They are contributing to the strong growth of distributed solar, primarily in the United States but also increasingly worldwide. In the span of 3 years, incumbent inverter manufacturers have lost residential market share to well-financed microinverter and DC optimizer startups that are now progressively targeting commercial-scale markets around the world.

“The module-level power electronics sector has grown from a niche market to mainstream, especially in the United States, where there is fierce competition in major solar PV markets like California,” says Dexter Gauntlett, senior research analyst with Navigant Research. “What’s more, a growing number of solar PV module manufacturers are now integrating microinverters and DC optimizers at their own production plants. At the same time, large power electronics companies and incumbent manufacturers are making strategic partnerships and acquisitions to take advantage of rapid growth in this market segment.”

According to the report, the rapid acceleration in deploying solar PV systems has escalated the competition between MLPE manufacturers and incumbent inverter suppliers. Instead of trying to fight microinverter manufacturers, larger technology suppliers such as ABB have joined the sector through acquisition. DC optimizer manufacturers, meanwhile, are growing rapidly and have partnered with module manufacturers to directly compete with microinverter companies in the residential segment and beyond — a significant trend that could shape the future of MLPEs and distributed solar.

Navigant Research’s entire report can be bought here.