Fuel Cell Market Size & Share, by Application (Portable, Stationary); Product Type (Proton Exchange Membrane, Molten Carbonate, Solid Oxide, Phosphoric Acid); End -User (Commercial & Industrial, Data Centers, Military & Defense, Residential) - Global Supply & Demand Analysis, Growth Forecasts, Statistics Report 2023-2035

  • Report ID: 3310
  • Published Date: Mar 09, 2023
  • Report Format: PDF, PPT

Global Fuel Cell Market Definition

A fuel cell is a device that transforms chemical energy that has been stored into heat and electric energy without using combustion. The fuel and an oxidant are electrochemically combined to create power across the ion-containing oxide electrolyte. Furthermore, fuel cells are significantly more efficient at converting energy than power plants and engines, since they emit fewer greenhouse gases and, in comparison, do so at a higher rate. Considering that hydrogen fuel cells emit only water and no carbon dioxide, they can effectively address serious climate change issues. In addition to this, there are almost no emissions of air polluters at the time of operation that further leads to pollution and health issues. However, fuel cells do not make much noise in comparison to other systems, as there are fewer moving parts in the fuel cell system.

The fuel cell works by creating a sandwich of the negative electrode, anode, and the positive electrode, cathode, both of these electrodes are wrapped around electrolyte to make the fuel cell work. Moreover, unlike batteries, fuel cells do not get exhausted and do not require to be recharged.

Fuel cells have a variety of applications, and they are used in a unique manner for each of them. They can power systems as big as a utility power station and as small as a laptop computer, using a number of different fuels and renewable sources. Moreover, other applications of fuel cells include the commercial, industrial, transportation, residential, and energy sectors, and as well as it serves as energy storage in reversible grid systems.

Global Fuel Cell Market: Key Insights

Base Year


Forecast Year




Base Year Market Size (2022)

~ USD 6 Billion

Forecast Year Market Size (2035)

~ USD 43 Billion

Regional Scope

  • North America (U.S., and Canada)
  • Latin America (Mexico, Argentina, Rest of Latin America)
  • Asia-Pacific (Japan, China, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, Rest of Asia-Pacific)
  • Europe (U.K., Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Russia, NORDIC, Rest of Europe)
  • Middle East and Africa (Israel, GCC North Africa, South Africa, Rest of the Middle East and Africa)

Global Fuel Cell Market Size, Forecast, and Trend Highlights Over 2023 - 2035

The global fuel cell market is estimated to garner a revenue of around USD 43 Billion by the end of 2035 by growing at a CAGR of ~25% over the forecast period, i.e., 2023 – 2035. Further, the market generated a revenue of nearly USD 6 Billion in the year 2022. The growth of the market can be attributed to the increasing use of hydrogen energy in the world. Fuel cells use hydrogen as a byproduct to stop the discharge of dangerous substances. Using hydrogen results in only two by-products, heat and water, which lessen combustion reactions and environmental damage. In 2021, the world's demand for hydrogen increased by 5% to 94 Mt, primarily owing to increased activity in the chemical and refining industries. Moreover, the consumption of hydrogen was 91 Mt in 2019.


 In addition to these, factors that are believed to fuel the market growth of fuel cells include the need to reduce the use of fossil fuels and greenhouse gas emissions. Fuel cells use hydrogen and eradicate the chances of emission of carbon, as the final by products are water and heat. The activities in various industries contributed significantly to increasing the greenhouse gas levels in the atmosphere. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the second-largest portion of greenhouse gas emissions is caused by electricity. Our use of fossil fuels, primarily coal and natural gas, accounts for about 60% of our electricity.

Global Fuel Cell Market: Growth Drivers and Challenges

Growth Drivers

  • Growing Awareness About Clean Energy – Solid oxide fuels operate effectively and are nevertheless regarded as environmentally friendly as they produce little carbon dioxide. According to the United Nations, emissions must be cut by almost half by 2030 and to zero by 2050 in order to prevent the worst effects of climate change. Cleaner energy sources are therefore becoming more popular. Right now, renewable energy sources account for about 29 percent of electricity.

  • Rising Need to Reduce the Dependency on Fossil Fuels– Solid oxide fuel cells may produce electricity using hydrogen, natural gas, and renewable energy sources, which lessens reliance on fossil fuels. As per the report backed by the United Nations, in order to avoid a potentially disastrous rise in global temperatures, countries must reduce their production of fossil fuels by 6% annually between 2020 and 2030.

  • Rise in the Number of Data Centers – Fuel cells are modular and low maintenance, making it simple to integrate, therefore, making it a longer-term dependable solution for data centers. There were around 8,000 data centers worldwide as of January 2021, spread across 110 different nations. Six of these nations are the United States with 33 percent of the total data centers, the United Kingdom with 5.7 percent, and China has a share of 5.2 percent.

  • Increasing Use of Hydrogen Energy– The capacity of electrolyzes reached about 8 GW in 2021, a two-fold increase from 2020. The electrolyzers are used in hydrogen generation by splitting water. Additionally, assuming every project in the pipeline is finished by 2030, the installed electrolyze capacity might reach 134-240 GW.

  • Higher Restrictions on Greenhouse Gas Emission– According to the Climate Act proposed by the Dutch government, greenhouse gas emissions must be reduced by 49% by 2030 compared to 1990 levels and by 95% by 2050. The act consists of agreements with various major sectors to curb the greenhouse gas emissions.


  • High cost of manufacturing of fuel cells- The initial cost of fuel cells can be significantly high since it uses metals such as platinum and iridium that are frequently needed as catalysts in these devices. Moreover, owing to the higher cost of raw materials, it makes the manufacturing of fuel cells expensive, thus imposing a major roadblock to the market’s growth.
  • Inadequate infrastructure to support hydrogen distribution
  • Available fuel cells are still in the prototype stage

Market Segmentation

The global fuel cell market is segmented and analyzed for demand and supply by product type into proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC), molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC), solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC), and phosphoric acid fuel cell (PAFC). Out of the four product types of fuel cells, the solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) segment is estimated to gain the largest market share over the projected time frame. The growth of the segment can be attributed to the rising capacity of off-grid energy. China's off-grid renewable energy capacity was 906.23 gigawatts in 2021, up around 5% from the previous year. Solid oxide fuel cells are the best suited for off-grid applications. As solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) now have an electrical efficiency of more than 60% owing to advancements in technology.

The global fuel cell market is also segmented and analyzed for demand and supply by end -user into commercial & industrial, data centers, military & defense, and residential. Amongst these four segments, the commercial and industrial segment is expected to garner a significant share. the growth of the commercial and industrial segments is expected to grow on account of the higher consumption of energy in the commercial and industrial sectors. Sales of retail power to commercial increased by about 3% in 2021. Additionally, since 2000, the industrial sector's need for power has increased by 3%. Furthermore, the industrial and commercial sectors utilized about 0.14 trillion kWh or about 3% of the total quantity of energy.

Our in-depth analysis of the global fuel cell market includes the following segments:

      By Application

  • Portable
  • Stationary

        By Product Type

  • Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell (PEMFC)
  • Molten Carbonate Fuel Cell (MCFC)
  • Solid Oxide Fuel Cell (SOFC)
  • Phosphoric Acid Fuel Cell (PAFC)

         By End User

  • Commercial & Industrial
  • Data Centers
  • Military & Defense
  • Residential

Global Fuel Cell Market Regional Synopsis

The North American fuel cell market, amongst the market in all the other regions, is projected to hold the largest market share by the end of 2035. The growth of the market can be attributed majorly to the rise in the number of data centers and the growing count of fuel cell vehicles in the region. According to reports, more than 2,600 data centers in the United States use more than 1.5% of the country's total energy. Moreover, there are now nearly 328 colocation data centers, around 24 network fabrics, and over 500 service providers in Canada. Besides this, as of February 2019, there were more than 6,500 fuel cell vehicles on American roads.

The Asia Pacific solid oxide fuel cell market, amongst the market in all the other regions, is projected to hold the largest market share by the end of 2035. The market growth in the region is expected on the account of rising efforts to boost the usage of renewable energy. China and India want to increase the installed capacity of renewable energy sources to more than 50% by 2025 and 2030, respectively. India is the world's third-largest generator of renewable energy, and non-fossil fuels account for 40% of the nation's installed electrical capacity. Moreover, Vietnam’s eighth national power development plan (PDP8) for 2021–30, issued by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce includes increasing the capacity of both solar energy and wind energy by 2030 by 18.6 GW and 18 GW, respectively. Additionally, Indonesia aims to build 41 gigawatts of capacity over the next ten years, with renewable energy making up the vast majority of that capacity for the first time.


Top Featured Companies Dominating the Global Fuel Cell Market

  • ITM Power PLC
    • Company Overview
    • Business Strategy
    • Key Product Offerings
    • Financial Performance
    • Key Performance Indicators
    • Risk Analysis
    • Recent Development
    • Regional Presence
    • SWOT Analysis
  • Fuji Electric Co., Ltd.
  • Proton Power Systems PLC
  • Plug Power Inc.
  • Ballard Power Systems
  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.
  • SFC Energy AG
  • Cummins, Inc.
  • Navistar, Inc.
  • Fuel Cell Energy, Inc.



In the News

  • Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd., received a contract of supplying solid oxide fuel cell in Europe. The system is financed by the state of North Rhine-Westphalia and the European Regional Development Fund as part of the research project "KWK.NRW 4.0." (ERDF)

  • Navistar, Inc. announced the collaboration with General Motors and OneH2 to introduce the hydrogen truck ecosystem. It is a solution for a zero-emission transportation system. General Motors is likely to supply hydrotech fuel cell power cubes and OneH2 is to scale hydrogen production

Author Credits:  Payel Roy, Dhruv Bhatia

  • Report ID: 3310
  • Published Date: Mar 09, 2023
  • Report Format: PDF, PPT

Key Questions Answered in the Report

1) What are the major factors driving the growth of the fuel cell market?

Ans: Rising hydrogen production, rising need for clean energy solutions, and rising number of modern data centers are the major factors driving the market growth.

2) What would be the CAGR of fuel cell market over the forecast period?

Ans: The market is anticipated to attain a CAGR of ~25% over the forecast period, i.e., 2023 – 2035.

3) What are the challenges affecting the fuel cell market growth?

Ans: Lack of infrastructure for producing hydrogen, high manufacturing cost of fuel cell, and most of the fuel cell is in prototype stage are estimated to be the growth hindering factors for the market expansion.

4) Which region will provide more business opportunities for growth of fuel cell market in future?

Ans: The market in the North American region is projected to hold the largest market share by the end of 2035 and provide more business opportunities in the future.

5) Who are the major players dominating the fuel cell market?

Ans: The major players in the market are Fuji Electric India Pvt. Ltd, Proton Power Systems PLC, Plug Power Inc., Ballard Power Systems Inc., Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd., SFC Energy AG, Cummins, Inc., Navistar, Inc., Fuel Cell Energy Inc., and ITM Power PLC

6) How are the company profiles selected?

Ans: The major players in the market are FuelCell Energy Inc., Ballard Power Systems Inc., Mitsubishi Power, Ltd., Plug Power Inc., Cummins Inc., and others.

7) What are the segments in the fuel cell market?

Ans: The market is segmented by application, product type, end user, and by region.

8) Which segment captures the largest market size in the application segment in the fuel cell market?

Ans: The solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) segment is anticipated to garner the largest market size by the end of 2035 and display significant growth opportunities.


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