Solar module prices have dropped significantly in recent years, helping to make solar power more affordable for more people around the world. Now, along with continuing price declines of solar panels, the costs of “balance of system” (BOS) components, like those used for solar racking and mounting, are set to fall as well, Kurzweil AI has reported.
Solar system prices are expected to fall between 15% and 30% by 2020 (depending on geography), according to Lux Research in a report, ‘The Squeeze: Trends in Solar Balance of Systems’, as part of their Solar Systems Intelligence service. These improvements are expected to make the levelized cost of solar power between $0.4/KWh and $0.8/KWh cheaper than the present. This may not sound like much, but it will certainly help to make solar even more competitive and popular.
Lux Research Senior Analyst Matthew Feintein has indicated that incremental cost reductions form racking and mounting, coupled with innovative system electronics changes, will accelerate system cost reductions and help reduce the cost of solar power.
The good news for homeowners is that the residential solar market is set for the largest gains, with BOS costs expected to drop more than any other segment, driven largely by additional cuts in labor costs by saving time. There will also be cost reductions for commercial systems, because of the less expensive racking and mounting components. Lux also suggests that innovations coming from the electrical side of the BOS industry have the highest potential for further cost reductions in the future.