October 23, 2013 -- Ultracapacitors and electric double-layer capacitors (EDLCs) fill an important and otherwise vacant niche in the current set of energy storage devices, bridging the gap between batteries and conventional capacitors. They offer greater energy densities than electrostatic capacitors, making them a better choice for back-up applications. They also possess higher power densities than batteries, allowing them to perform a role in load-leveling of pulsed currents. They can help to improve battery performance when combined in hybrid power sources, or they can provide an efficient and long-lasting means of energy storage when used on their own.

According to a recently published report from  iRAP (,titled, "  Ultracapacitors for Stationary, Industrial, Consumer and Transport Energy Storage - An Industry, Technology and Market Analysis," The global market for ultracapacitors is estimated to reach $625 million in 2013 of which North America will have $200 million with a share of about one third of the total market. The market will increase to $1.4 billion by 2018 with a CAGR of 17.5%. North American will continue to maintain its share in the next five years. North American market will be followed by Japan, China, Europe and Korea. China and Korea will see larger growth rates of above 20% annually.

There are four major markets where ultracapacitors are needed - stationary, industrial, consumer and transport energy storage power management. The stationary energy storage market needs ultracapacitors for short duration applications of energy storage, which are characterized by the need for high power for short periods of time. These include power quality ride-through applications, power stabilization, adjustable speed drive support, temporary support of DR (distributed resources) during load steps, voltage flicker mitigation and many other applications. UPS (uninterruptible power supply) systems and power management systems used in distributed generation, wind and solar energy generating stations employ a combination battery and ultracapacitor bank whereby the battery is used for long duration interruptions and the capacitor is used for voltage sag support and momentary interruptions. This reduces the cycling duty on the battery, thereby extending its life.

Industrial applications need ultracapacitors to improve power quality, specifically using ultracapacitors to handle power surges and short-term power loss. Since electricity is transmitted at 60Hz or 120Hz, this market also needs high frequency devices based on aqueous electrodes, on a much larger scale

The consumer electronics and computer market needs small high frequency devices in order to reduce battery size. Typical applications are pagers, personal data assistance devices and cell phones. The GSM phone will require a 200Hz response time to improve the transmit burst in a digital phone system. In these devices, high power is more important than energy density. Therefore, to get the desired frequency response, ultracapacitors will use aqueous electrolytes that provide much lower resistance. To attain these frequencies, carbon electrodes need to be thin, with large pores for rapid ion transport through the material.

The   transport energy storage market aims to use ultracapacitors as load-leveling devices with batteries in electric and hybrid vehicles. By far the highest value target for ultracapacitor technology is the global automobile industry. Automotive applications range from hybrid drive trains to power network stabilization to the "electrification" of braking, steering, air conditioning and other subsystems to improve the fuel efficiency and reliability of the 50 to 60 million passenger vehicles that roll off assembly lines around the world each year. With new no-idle regulations and evolving emissions standards this year, providers are looking to new solutions for better fuel economy and more efficient energy storage technology. For start/stop applications, manufacturers will increasingly look to ultracapacitors to deliver power efficiently and affordably.

The ultracapacitor business is currently undergoing a major structural shift caused by several developments in nanostructured carbon, carbon nanotubes, low-cost graphitic carbon, barium titanate ceramic electrodes and NGP electrodes. Research on new asymmetrical ultracapacitors (nickel hydroxides, ruthenium oxide) and new hybrid technologies - lithium-ion supercapacitors (LIC) and nickel carbon supercapacitors - challenges the status quo. The high capacitance associated with graphene appears to be an edge effect, and it is predicted that by 2018, cost-effective manufacturing of grapheme-based electrodes will be a reality.

The following Summary Table, "North American and global market for ultracapacitors, 2013 and 2018," and the accompanying figure, show the current and projected market for ultracapacitors.











CAGR (%)















Source:iRAP, Inc.

More details of the report are available from Innovative Research and Products (iRAP), Inc., visit or contact at Tel: 203-569-7909, E-mail:  Email Contact

Published Date: May 2013                                                                    Price (Hard Copy): $3,950

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