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Micro-fabrication is the primarily used technology for the design and development of MEMS. The IC fabrication technology provides a powerful tool for the miniaturization of mechanical systems, and batch processing technique that cannot be performed with the traditional machining techniques. In addition, the IC fabrication technique offers integration of the mechanical systems with electronic, to provide close loop controlled MEMS performance. The advancement in the IC fabrication technology has also boosted the cost effective fabrication process of MEMS.
The global automotive MEMS sensor market was valued $2,600.5 million in 2014, and it is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.0% during 2015-2020.
The automotive MEMS foundry outsourcing is very limited, as compared to the MEMS sensor foundries for the consumer electronics products. An exception can be seen in the partnership of Freescale with the Dalsa foundry. However, the outsourced foundry services are only limited to lower end products such as pressure sensor, whereas Freescale’s foundry retains its in-house manufacturing of high-value technologies of automotive MEMS sensors, such as accelerometers and gyroscopes. The major automotive MEMS players, including Bosch, still perceive the in-house MEMS fabrication as a dominant manufacturing process for the automotive MEMS sensor.
The increasing adoption of advanced driver assistance system (ADAS), and growing need of inter vehicle communication (connected car) has increased the number of sensors integration in automobiles. The automotive MEMS sensors market is highly consolidated. The MEMS sensor manufacturing companies are heavily emphasizing on the growing sales of passenger cars, with sensing technologies designed for the vehicle and driver safety. North America witnessed the highest revenue from safety and chassis, due to large scale adoption of electronic stability controls in new vehicles. MEMS pressure sensors are extensively used in range of automotive applications, including oil pressure monitoring, nitrous monitoring, brake monitoring, and transmission. In addition, the pressure sensor are also used in the automotive side airbags, exhaust gas recirculation pressure measurement, tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS), barometric pressure measurement, and direct-injection systems of gasoline. The increased popularity of sports racing vehicle, due to the popularity of racing events such as formula One and others, is laying new market opportunities for the automotive MEMS pressure sensor market.
North America and Europe remains the two largest markets for the automotive MEMS sensors, while Asia-Pacific along with Rest of the World regions have witnessed comparatively higher growth rate, in the past few years. The growth in the Asia-pacific region is led by China and India. Brazil is largest and fastest growing regional automotive MEMS sensor market in Rest of the World region.
The major companies operating in the global automotive MEMS sensors market include Robert Bosch GmbH, Invensense Inc., Denso Corporation, STMicroelectronics N.V., Analog Devices Inc., Delphi Automotive PLC, Freescale Semiconductors Ltd., Infineon Technologies AG, Sensata Technologies Inc., Hitachi Ltd., and Panasonic Corporation.