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That I have been impressed with solar water heaters in particular, and in the applications of solar thermal in general, has already been mentioned in some of my earlier posts… (see here, here, and here).

It was thus interesting for me to read a nice article that gave data on the market size for solar water heaters in India (see this link for article): “the Rs.600 crore domestic water heater segment largely consists of electric (Rs.450 crore), solar (Rs.120 crore) and gas (Rs.30 crore) heaters.”

Now, 120 crores is not really a lot, and even 600 crores does not sound like heck of a lot, for a population of 120 crores – that’s just Rs 5 per year per person.

India has about 200 million households…with about40 million middle class households of that. In 2009-10, it was estimated that about 10 million households had annual incomes in excess of Rs 5 lakhs.

On the other hand, the total number of households with a solar water heater is only about 0.7 million – less than 2%of the total middle class households. Compare this with China – 25 million households there have a solar water heater.

Once again, these statistics to me only mean that the potential in this segment in quite massive. This interesting paper estimates that the solar water heater segment will grow an impressive 500-600% between now and 2022 – I wouldn’t be surprised if this came true.

Useful links:

Ariston Thermo – a world leader in solar water heaters; in India, it is called Racold Thermo, based in Pune