Until now, the Indian solar thermal market has been dominated by flat plate collectors (FPCs). FPCs have several advantages, with the main being robust and long-lasting. In a price-sensitive market such as the Indian one, however, vacuum tube collectors (VTCs) have gained a foothold over the last years because the systems are 30% to 40% cheaper if the glass tubes are imported from China. Although there is no official data available, VTCs are said to have reached a 35% share in the Indian market. In the fiscal year 2011/2012, market volume reached a newly installed collector area of 1 million m² (see interview with Tarun Kapoor). The photo shows flat plate collectors on high-rise, residential buildings in western India.
Photo: Kaushal Solar