Better technology, falling prices and boiling demand have made China the world's largest boom market for solar water heaters:
[China Himin Solar Energy Group] has earned a fortune manufacturing solar heaters, relatively low-tech rooftop devices which capture the sun's energy to provide water for baths and washing and are at the forefront of a renewable energy drive.
At least 30 million Chinese households now have one and last year the country accounted for around 80 percent of the world market, said Eric Martinot, visiting scholar at Beijing's Tsinghua University. "We are at 15 to 20 percent annual growth and I don't see that slowing down."
So is there a flaw, other than the fact that they can be quite unsightly?
Even with their growing pollution problems, China seems to be ahead of the game in some of the most unexpected areas- solar water heaters? This isn't the first time I've heard of a company selling this product; my group works with another one called Yuxi Tongle (http://www.new-ventures.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=enterpriseDetails&IDenterprise=105) that is built to last harsh winters. My question is how big an industry is this in China and do we have equivalent technology here in the US?