May 2013
  • May 02, 2013 Category: Smart Technology

    NanoMarkets thinks that when one digs a little deeper—beyond the purely semantic—it is possible to identify some real distinctions between the old "lighting management systems" and the new "smart lighting systems" concepts and that for manufacturers in the lighting space that understand these distinctions, there will be significant profits to be made over the coming decade.

March 2013
  • March 25, 2013 Category: Advanced Materials

    Technologies for the detection and quantification of ionizing radiation have been around since the discovery of radiation in the late 19th century. As we have learned to exploit radiation to satisfy key technological needs, detection methods have become more and more sophisticated.  NanoMarkets expects most radiation detection equipment markets will remain vibrant for some time to come. Universally, most markets employing radiation detectors want better performance, optimized footprints, mobility and of course, low-cost.  As one might expect there are a lot of drivers impacting the radiation detection market at the present time.

  • March 25, 2013 Category: Advanced Materials

    Radiation detection materials are a category of materials that represents a sector poised for significant growth when new materials become available in the near future.  While current materials such as sodium iodide (NaI), bismuth germanium oxide (BGO, Bi3Ge4O12), lutetium yttrium orthosilicate (Lu2SiO5(Ce)), germanium and 3He (for neutron detection) are currently used in many applications, they all have at least some level of either performance or cost drawbacks for many current and proposed new applications. 

    The need for both high performance and higher sensitivity in homeland security and nuclear medicine diagnostic applications and for less sensitive, low cost solutions in pervasive monitoring systems presents a fertile market for new radiation detection materials.

February 2013
  • February 19, 2013 Category: Renewable Energy

    Solar energy storage with lead-acid batteries is as old as the solar energy industry itself.  Off-grid photovoltaics (PV) has invariably used such batteries – in some cases just car batteries – to store energy produced during sunny periods.  Until recently the market for grid-connected PV storage has been negligible, but this is changing.  As feed-in-tariffs (FiTs) are reduced – and NanoMarkets expects this trend to continue globally – incentives are emerging for both residential and commercial PV users to store the solar energy they generate when the sun shines.

    The solar storage business is thus doubly blessed.  Not only has its opportunity space increased because of the growing number of PV installations as a whole, but non-utility, grid-connected PV has become a target has become a target market for storage for the first time.

  • February 13, 2013 Category: Glass and Glazing Smart Technology

    As NanoMarkets reports in “Opportunities for Smart Mirrors: Self-Dimming and Beyond 2013-2020”, the size of the market for smart mirror technologies is already at approximately $1 billion in 2013, and we expect the value to grow to over $3.4 billion by the end of the decade.

    Some of this growth will come from increasing deployment of electrochromic self-dimming rear-view mirrors, both interior and exterior versions, like those on the market today from firms like Gentex and Magna. There is an existing, proven demand for these mirrors; they are already found in over one-fifth of new automobiles, and the proportion is expected to steadily grow over the next eight years. In fact, for many years now, the term “smart mirror” has been taken to mean just these self-dimming automotive mirrors.

  • February 07, 2013 Category: Advanced Materials

    Nanosilver inks and pastes have been under development for some time. One of the major claims of printable nanosilver has been that, although it is certainly more costly on a per-weight-unit basis, less of the material is needed to achieve the same level of conductivity compared to conventional materials.  In addition, nanosilver's smaller particle size enables lower-temperature sintering and inherently higher resolution in printed patterns.

    But these claims have not resulted in successful commercialization of printed nanosilver on a large scale:

January 2013
  • January 14, 2013 Category: Advanced Materials

    As reported in NanoMarkets’ most recent report on industrial silver, NanoMarkets estimates that the total global market for silver inks and pastes in 2013 will be approximately $7.8 billion, but that it will slowly contract over the next eight years to about $7.5 billion by 2020. The decline in the overall market is due primarily to two factors (1) the persistently high price of silver, which retards the use of silver inks and pastes in cost-sensitive applications, of which there are quite a few and (2) the decline in the biggest market for silver inks and pastes; photovoltaics.

  • January 11, 2013 Category: Glass and Glazing Advanced Materials

    In the past year, we have seen the flexible glass suppliers expand their commercialization efforts.  Corning officially launched Willow Glass in 2012, its 100-μm-thick material designed for lightweight, cost-efficient display products. AGC is offering a 100-μm-thick flexible glass material for "sheet-to-sheet" handling.  And Schott's D 263 eco product is available in sheet form with thicknesses down to 25 μm.

    In its earliest days, flexible glass was often associated with the intrinsically flexible display concept.  This connection is natural; one advantage of flexible glass is that it offers the superior performance of glass – high barrier performance, durability, and clarity – but in a flexible format.  But unfortunately for manufacturers of flexible glass there do not yet seem to be any good demand-side reasons for such displays.

December 2012
  • December 13, 2012 Category: Advanced Materials Smart Technology

    While the current electrical grid is a modern marvel, there is a general consensus that it needs to be upgraded to a Smart Grid with grid storage.  Energy storage is, in fact, a vital component of the coming Smart Grid, and NanoMarkets predicts that new materials and systems for chemical batteries and supercapacitors for Smart Grid electrical storage applications represent a significant opportunity.

    Even though pumped hydro is the most efficient means for storing generated power for later use, NanoMarkets believes that chemical batteries and supercapacitors represent the biggest growth opportunity for most applications, as they are not limited to certain geological locations and do not have the potential environmental impact issues of pumped hydro.

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