An Energy Scenario From Nanotechnology Economics Essay

Energy is one of the universe ‘s largest markets, but the demand is forecast to far transcend the available supply from current resources. Therefore, both the industry and authoritiess are thirstily seeking for new energy solutions, which will turn to this turning supply spread and from industry ‘s point of position, besides get net income. Renewable Energy Resources are needed to keep the universe ‘s energy supply to decelerate the depletion of fossil militias and cut down planetary C emanations. Breakthroughs enabled by Nanotechnology will hold a major impact in doing better usage of bing resources and in the long-run ( after 2010 ) , we are likely to see a stronger influence of Nanotechnology in advancing the usage of radical New Energy Beginnings such as H and solar transitions made possible by bettering the procedures or supplying nano-engineered stuffs for their energy storage and release.


We provide a nanotechnology theoretical account based on primary research quantifying the impact and diffusion of nanotechnologies by industry sector over clip. The theoretical account takes into history planetary R & A ; D disbursement on nanotechnologies and assumes a average seven twelvemonth clip slowdown between the start of a support plan and a commercially utile end product, industry R & A ; D growing rates, planetary GDP growing anticipations and the rate of incursion of nanotechnologies based on primary research to develop the rate of diffusion by industry sector.

1.1 Major Premises

Technology diffusion is non additive and the theoretical account takes into history changing rates of acceptance as nanotechnologies quickly become mature in some industries, while others are late adoptive parents. The cardinal grounds for this are cost and sector. In non-cost sensitive countries such as defense mechanism, acceptance of new engineerings tends to be rapid in public presentation additions can be realised. The opposite is true in industries the major portion of industries such as nutrient and vesture where low borders restrict the acceptance of new engineerings until their costs become low plenty. Adoption besides varies with sector. The chemical industry has been working with nanomaterials for the past 10 old ages.

The theoretical account assumes a 50 % measure map in the rate acceptance of nanotechnologies in 2012-2013 as a consequence of there being a sufficient figure of good characterized constituents ( stuffs, scatterings, merchandises ) available through mature and dependable supply ironss to let the production of systems based on nanotechnologies. This displacement from bungalow industry to major industry is correspondent to the displacement from distinct electronic constituents to incorporate circuits.

The theoretical account makes no allowance for sudden scientific discovery. However, whether these are the innovation of the transistor or the find of DNA the acceptance of engineerings by the market can take 20 to thirty old ages. It should be noted that fullerenes were discovered in 1985 and C nanotubes in 1991, 23 and 17 old ages ago, severally.

Finally the theoretical account assumes that there will be no major inauspicious populace or ethical reaction to the application of nanotechnologies, nor that there will be any important acceleration of research for political grounds or grounds whatsoever.


The market for nanotechnologies in the energy sector [ 3,5 ] can be segmented into three classs:

iˆ Energy Saving, which includes engineerings such as better insularity, solid province lighting, decrease of weight of cars and bettering the efficiency of the burning of fossil fuels

Energy Storage, which includes Li ion batteries for both portable electronics and intercrossed electric vehicle ( HEV ) usage, stuffs capable of hive awaying H for usage in fuel cells or H powered vehicles and super-capacitors

Energy Generation, which is chiefly focused on the transition of energy to electricity and is dominated by applications in H fuel cells and thin movies and organic solar photovoltaics [ 1,2 ] .

The market will be dominated by energy salvaging engineerings, with growing of energy coevals, chiefly from fuel cells increasing, after 2010. The figures assume that the current high rates of R & A ; D work in the car industry, will ensue in acceptance of fuel cells from 2010 onwards. However, even with the most optimistic market prognosiss, energy nest eggs dominate the image from now until 2014. [ Figure 1. Market Breakdown – 2007 ; Figure 2. Market Breakdown – 2014 ] .

The most singular characteristic of the analysis is the go oning domination of energy salvaging engineerings, lifting from 62 % of the entire market in 2007 to 77 % in 2014. While the period 2007-2014 shows compound one-year growing rates of 64 % for energy salvaging engineerings and 90 % for energy coevals, energy storage applications show a relatively 30 % growing rate.

Figure 1. Market Breakdown – 2007

Figure 2. Market Breakdown – 2014

2.1 ENERGY Economy

The market for energy economy applications is ab initio dominated by solid province illuming doing usage of both Light Emitting Diodes ( LEDs ) and Organic Light Emitting Diodes ( OLEDs ) , and the usage of C nanotube and nanofibers in composite stuffs for weight decrease in automotive applications.

The insularity market is presently split between aerogels, and polymers with assorted fillers such as montmorillonite nanoclays. However the increasing figure of companies bring forthing and selling aerogels indicates that insularity based applications will increase quickly, spread outing the market from the insularity of LNG grapevines and majority bearers to edifice and commercial applications. Increased competition and capacity is expected to drive monetary values down taking to increased rates of acceptance.

While the usage of nanomaterials in insularity will increase in springs and bounds, this is still a bantam fraction in the planetary market. The market for solid province lighting is presently dominated by high brightness LEDS which are happening applications from backlights in portable electronics to automobile illuming. High capital costs in the OLED industry coupled with compatibility between LED and other semiconducting material engineerings will restrict market incursion before 2009-2010. Thereafter, crisp falls in monetary values as capacity addition will see OLEDS taking an increasing portion of the solid province illuming market. The Oxonica presently dominates the planetary market for fuel borne accelerators, although legion other compounds are under development that will finally dispute this place.

The graduated table of this chance will non be missed by major chemical industry participants who will supply stiff competition as the market size additions by three orders of magnitude over the following 10 old ages. The acceptance of nanocomposite stuffs in the conveyance subdivision will be important. While the market was already some seven hundred million dollars by 2007, the falling monetary values of nanomaterials driven by increased competition and the stableness and scalability of production procedures will increase the rate of acceptance. Sectors that are less sensitive to the cost of natural stuffs such as aerospace ( Figure 3. ) are already following composite stuffs, the most high profile of which is Boeing ‘s usage of complexs for the 787.

Figure 3. Nanocomposite Materials for Aerospace

2.2 ENERGY Storage

Presently, and for the foreseeable hereafter, the bulk of nanomaterials used for energy storage will be in lithium ion batteries integrating C nanofibres and nanotubes, with the huge bulk being used in portable electronics. From 2008 onwards, increasing sums of nanomaterials will be used in Li-ion batteries for Hybrid Electric Vehicles ( HEV ) although the market will go on to be less than that for portable electronics. Super-capacitors utilizing C nanotubes ( CNT ) will be introduced as CNT monetary values autumn, with many of the applications being automotive.

Less predictable is the market for H storage stuffs as there are no clear victors in sight. Carbon nanotubes were theoretically predicted to be a suited medium for H storage, although empirical consequences have failed to transcend more that 1 % of H by weight. Improved computing machine modeling of compounds has revealed an increasing figure of suited nano stuffs, although there is still much work required to interpret theoretical consequences to commercially feasible merchandises. The size of the market is farther dependant on the acceptance of H as a fuel by the automotive industry, which in bend is dependent on the necessary supply substructure being in topographic point.


The market for energy coevals is expected to be dominated by fuel cells [ 4 ] , with similar cautions using to this sector as the H storage market, i.e. that it is extremely dependent on both credence by the automotive industry ( Figure 4. ) and that there is sufficient supply substructure available. While many automotive makers have announced programs to present fuel cell powered theoretical accounts between 2009 and 2014, fuels cell developments are come oning less rapidly than predicted and the estimations have been late revised downwards by a figure of analysts. Assorted thin movie and organic solar cells ( i.e. 1s based on flexible substrates instead than earlier coevals Si based devices ) are already looking on the market in little volumes. From 2010 it is expected that production procedures will be sufficiently scalable leting monetary values to fall significantly below the monetary values of current photovoltaic engineerings.

Figure 4. ( a ) Energy Salvaging – by utilizing nanocomposite stuffs ( B ) Energy

Generation – fuel cell theoretical account


Between 2007 and 2014 the transit market will see the highest growing for nanotechnology with a growing rate of 75 % , compared with 56 % for residential applications and 26 % for portable electronics. Transport will be the dominant application due to the usage of nanocomposite stuffs for weight decrease, nano-enabled fuel cells, batteries and the usage of fuel borne accelerators to increase engine efficiency. [ Figure 5. Market Share ] .

Figure 5. Market portion of Energy Markets from Nano Materials and Nanotechnology

4. Decision

While nanotechnologies hold promise to enable a broad scope of clean energy coevals issues to be addressed, short and average term applications will concentrate on bettering energy efficiency with the major growing chances being in the automotive sector. In 2011, energy market for the transit sector will be highest, followed by the residential and commercial sector, and so the portable electronic sector. Nanotechnology offers the ability to heighten many cardinal belongingss of energy engineerings to accomplish sustainability and procure our hereafter energy supplies.