Solar PV-thermal (PV-T) technologies capture the waste heat from solar PV modules, which utilize only 12-15% of the incoming sunlight, to provide heat for space and water.
Approximately 36.7 gigawatts-thermal (GWth) of new solar thermal capacity was commissioned in 2016, increasing total global capacity by 5% to approximately 456 GWth. China accounted for about 75% of global additions, followed by Turkey, Brazil, India and the United States. Moreover, globalization of solar thermal heating and cooling technologies continued with sales picking up in several new emerging markets, including Argentina, the Middle East and parts of Eastern and Central Africa.
Solar process heat is far from meeting its economic and technical potential. Low fossil fuel prices and lack of concern among industry stakeholders about CO2 emissions and other environmental challenges have limited interest in alternative energy sources, including solar thermal. According to suppliers of SHIP, the most important conditions for enabling robust market development are high fossil energy prices and political mandates for the use of solar process heat.
Source: Renewables 2017 - REN21 (Renewable Energy Police Network for the 21st. Century)