Fuel Cell Balance of Plant (BOP) Market: Supporting Components of Fuel Cell
- A fuel cell system consists of a fuel cell and its supporting balance-of-plant (BOP) – the pumps, valves, sensors, fittings, piping, etc. – needed to turn a fuel cell into a useful power plant. Components in this complex system are exposed to hydrogen, air (oxygen), high-purity water, heat, and other chemicals for a significantly long duration.
- Fuel cell balance of plant includes various components such as fuel processing system that requires a fuel reformer, heat exchangers, chemical reactors, fans/blowers, burner, etc.; air management system that requires a turbine, compressor, heat exchangers, motor, fan, etc.; and power conditioning system that comprises a converter, inverter, batteries, motor, etc.
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Key Drivers of Global Fuel Cell Balance of Plant (BOP) Market
- The global fuel cell balance of plant (BOP) market is expected to expand at a significant pace owing to an increase in the demand of fuel cells in various applications such as automotive, military, infrastructure, and industrial
- Rise in the number of installations of stationary as well as portable fuel cells and an increase in the demand for environment-friendly energy sources are key factors driving investment in the global fuel cell BOP components market. BOP also plays a crucial role in optimizing the price at which fuel cells are available, thus providing opportunities for cost reduction in case BOP expenses are monitored consistently.
Higher BOP Cost Involved in Installation of Fuel Cells to Hamper Market
- The BOP in a fuel cell system is the supporting equipment that ensures the fuel cell operates as a reliable power source. Assembly or installation of BOP components is critical to the timely commissioning of a fuel cell. Initial investment in fuel cell BOP is high, as compared to that required for other power plants such as solar and wind. This is a major factor restraining the market.
- The fuel cell balance of plant (BOP) market is directly influenced by the prevailing prices of raw materials used in manufacturing these components. The final price of a fuel cell depends on the cost of BOP, which in turn depends on the raw materials used in the production of these components.
Asia Pacific to Hold Significant Share of Global Fuel Cell Balance of Plant (BOP) Market
- In terms of region, the global fuel cell balance of plant (BOP) market can be divided into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa
- Asia Pacific is projected to dominate the global fuel cell BOP market during the forecast period. South Korea, Japan, and China, are expected to emerge as major markets in the region in the next few years. The fuel cell BOP market in Asia Pacific is expected to expand at a significant pace from 2019 to 2027, owing to expansion of end-use industries such as construction and automotive in countries, such as China, Japan, and South Korea, which is expected to boost the demand for fuel cells. This, in turn, is anticipated to boost the fuel cell BOP market.
- North America is estimated to follow Asia Pacific, in terms of share of the global market, in the next few years, owing to the presence of well-established industrial and manufacturing sectors in the region
- Furthermore, new construction and renovation activities in Europe are expected to fuel the demand for fuel cells, which is expected propel the demand for fuel cell BOP in the region during the forecast period. Presence of a well-established automotive sector in several countries across Europe is anticipated to boost the demand for fuel cell BOP to produce portable fuel cells for automotive applications from 2019 to 2027.
- Middle East & Africa is expected to witness considerable increase in the demand for fuel cell BOP during the forecast period. In terms of demand, the fuel cell balance of plant (BOP) market in Latin America is projected to expand at a steady pace during the forecast period, owing to the presence of less number of fuel cell manufacturers in the region.
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Key Players in Fuel Cell Balance of Plant (BOP) Market
The global fuel cell balance of plant (BOP) market is consolidated, owing to the presence of large-sized international players. However, the presence of a small- and medium-sized domestic players makes the market highly competitive. Key players operating in the global fuel cell balance of plant (BOP) market are:
- HORIBA Group
- Cummins Inc.
- INN Balance