Transportation and Stationary Energy Storage Will Overtake Consumer Electronics as the Largest Markets for Energy Storage by 2018

Consumer electronics like smartphones and laptops have traditionally driven the most demand for energy storage devices such as lithium-ion batteries, but clean energy advances mean that transportation and stationary applications will soon become the largest energy storage markets.

By 2025 the energy storage market will top $100 billion with applications in transportation alone reaching $69 billion. Transformations in the electricity grid mean that stationary storage has the highest growth rates and will reach $19 billion in 2025. This growth will have profound implications, ranging from how whole economies are powered to how populations and products move around.

  • Transportation is the clear long-term driver of energy storage demand.Transportation applications are now the largest source of energy storage demand – expected to reach 46 GWh in 2017 compared to just 27 GWh from consumer electronics. Although energy storage volume in consumer electronics will grow at six percent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2025, falling battery prices mean the market size will remain relatively flat.
  • Electric vehicles (EVs) are the largest opportunity for growth.Within the transportation market, the applications that will drive the highest revenues are those using the largest packs: electric buses and passenger EVs. Passenger EVs make up the biggest opportunity, worth $32 billion in 2025 – 46 percent of the market for energy storage in transportation. Electric buses will see a faster rate of adoption compared to EVs, but with fewer total vehicles sold, they remain the second largest opportunity, growing at 22 percent annually to a $9.7 billion opportunity in 2025.
  • China and India lead stationary energy storage growth.Stationary energy storage will be a 34 GWh market worth $19 billion in 2025, largely driven by the emerging long-duration market. The need for long-duration storage in uses like peak power shifting or renewables integration will expand significantly, with the emerging markets of China and India driving the most growth.

As the energy storage industry surpasses $100 billion over the next decade, several developments will occur in transportation and stationary applications. For transportation, plug-in vehicles will likely face volatile sales as subsidies expire globally while 48V hybrids emerge as the winning technology for automakers. For stationary applications, more experimentation with new technologies and business structures in the coming years are likely to emerge as it becomes a test bed for next-generation batteries, including metal-air and flow batteries. Ultimately, the transportation and stationary space are likely to collide as new opportunities in vehicle-to-X (V2X) concepts will emerge.

By: Chris Robinson and Tim Grejtak