Table of Contents
Nanotechnology is increasingly impacting the U.S. and world energy balance, both on the supply and demand sides. On the supply side, nanotechnology is being used to optimize production from existing energy sources (e.g., crude petroleum) and to exploit new sources such as heavy oil, liquefied coal and solar energy (including using solar energy to produce hydrogen). Nanotechnology is also improving and opening new possibilities for the transmission and storage of energy, especially electricity and possibly hydrogen in the future.
On the supply side, nanotechnologies have the potential to reduce energy consumption by making it possible to manufacture lighter and/or more energy-efficient cards and appliances. Nanotechnologies can also be used to improve energy efficiency in buildings.
STUDY GOALS AND OBJECTIVES
This report is an updated edition of a BCC report first published in 2007, whose goal is to identify and quantify the market for nanoscale materials and devices that are used to generate or conserve energy. Specific objectives include the following:
Identifying nanoscale materials and devices that currently are or in the future could be used in energy production or conservation applications.
Analyzing and predicting trends in the most likely application(s) for each of these materials and devices.
Projecting the resulting market for specific nanoscale materials and devices.
Estimating the potential net impact of nanoscale materials and devices on the global energy balance.
Drawing attention to manufacturers of renewable energy systems and associated advanced materials and devices that are most likely to benefit from the trends identified above.
This report is a business opportunity report intended especially for developers and vendors of nanoscale materials and devices that target the energy systems market. It should also be useful to vendors of energy systems interested in understanding where the market is headed with respect to nanoscale enabling technologies.
Other readers who will find the report’s findings and conclusions informative include:
Members of the energy trade, professionals and advocacy organizations.
The general nanotechnology interest community.
Officials of government agencies and multinational organizations concerned with energy developments and nanotechnology.
While the report is oriented to the interests and concerns of a non-technical audience, it contains a great deal of technical information that should also be of interest to scientists and engineers working in the nanotechnology and energy fields.
SCOPE AND FORMAT
The report focuses on the global market for nanoscale materials (e.g., nanopowders, nanocomposites, nanoscale thin films and others) and devices (e.g., nanosensors) used in the following types of energy applications:
Renewable and non-renewable energy production (e.g., petroleum refining, solar energy).
Energy transmission, conversion and storage (e.g., transmission systems, transformers, batteries and fuel cells).
Energy end uses (motor vehicles, building HVAC systems, manufacturing).
The report concentrates on nanotechnology applications that are currently in commercial use or are likely to be commercialized by 2017. Other applications that, while promising, are not likely to make it out of the laboratory by 2017, are not covered in-depth.
The report does not cover nanoscale materials and devices used to monitor and/or control the environmental impacts of energy production, or use such as nanomaterials used in automotive catalytic converters. These technologies are outside the scope of this study and are covered in detail in several other BCC Research reports such as reports NAN039A Nanotechnology in Environmental Applications and NAN035A Nanosensors.
The report also does not cover nanomaterials that may have an indirect impact on energy consumption (e.g., by decreasing weight or resistance). Readers interested in such materials may wish to consult BCC Report EGY051A Petroleum Fuel Optimization Technologies.
The report format includes the following major elements:
Description of nanomaterials and nanodevices used in energy applications, including properties and fabrication methods.
Overall market size, segmentation and growth trends.
Major energy applications of nanoscale materials and devices.
Types of nanomaterials/nanodevices used.
Consumption of nanomaterials and nanodevices, 2011–2017.
INFORMATION SOURCES AND METHODOLOGY
The findings and conclusions of this report are based on information gathered from developers and manufacturers of nanoscale materials and devices and the energy systems in which they are used, as well as concerned governmental, industry and professional organizations. Interview data were combined with information gathered through an extensive review of secondary sources such as trade publications, trade associations, company literature and online databases to produce the baseline market estimates contained in this report.
The methodologies and assumptions used to develop the market projections in this report are discussed at length under the various types of nano-energy applications. The report carefully documents data sources and assumptions. This way, readers can see how the market estimates were developed and, if they so desire, test the impact on the final numbers of changing assumptions such as price.
Andrew McWilliams, the author of this report, is a partner in the Boston-based international technology and marketing consulting firm, 43rd Parallel LLC. He is the author of numerous other BCC Research technology market research reports, including the earlier (2007) edition of this report, as well as several other reports in the areas of nanotechnology and energy such as EGY053C Advanced Materials and Devices for Renewable Energy Systems: Global Markets, EGY051A Petroleum Fuel Optimization Technologies, CHM020D Catalysts for Environmental and Energy Applications, NAN040A Nanomaterials Markets by Type, EGY055B Building the Global Hydrogen Economy: Technologies and Opportunities, AVM066C Superconductors: Technologies and Global Markets and NAN031E Nanotechnology: A Realistic Market Assessment.
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