According to ABI Research 335,000 cellular base stations will be solar powered by 2013. The industry is seeing a push by OEMs to solar power and improvements in solar panels mean that solar power is now a viable option for base stations.
Other alternatives to normal electricity for base stations are wind power, compressed air, and fuel cells. In areas where solar power is viable this means that cellular users over the next few years could see less dropped calls and more coverage as towers go up in areas that weren't served previously due to lack of an electrical infrastructure.
ABI Research vice president Stuart Carlaw says, “Solar power will first be used in conjunction with other primary energy sources such as diesel or grid-based electricity, but will increasingly be seen as a primary source for autonomous cell sites.” Carlaw adds that, “The market for autonomous solar powered cell sites looks set to grow from extremely modest levels today to over 40,000 renewable energy sites by the end of 2013. A further 295,000 base stations are expected to supplement on-grid power usage with solar.”
Don't Miss: The Best HDR TVs