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Escalating demand for consumer electronics and rising government funds for military and defense are expected to increase the global IR detector market during forecast period. Moreover, decrease in the prices of IR detector owing to the advancement in technology and manufacturing capabilities is further increasing the market penetration of IR detector in lower end consumer electronics application. The two basic forms of IR detectors are cooled, and uncooled. The cooled IR detectors use cryogenic cooling system. Uncooled IR detector is smaller in size, and offers cost benefits, which is also one of the key drivers for IR detectors in consumer electronics. The growing acceptance of IR detectors in applications such as consumer electronics, security, and smart homes, spectroscopy and temperature management applications is expected to spur the demand of IR detection during the next five years.
Intellectual proprietary licensing, high proprietary learning curve and stringent government regulations are expected to hinder the growth of the IR detector market during forecast period. The decreasing military budgets in developed countries owing to the recent economic downturn have also affected the growth Of IR detector market. However, increasing defense and military budgets in the developing countries such as India and China is providing new market opportunity for the global IR detector companies.
Based on the technology, global IR detector market can be broadly classified as InGaAs, Mercury Cadmium Telluride (MCT), Ingaas, Pyroelectric, Microbolometers and Thermopyle. On the basis of spectrum range the global IR detector market can be classified as Short Wave Infrared (SWIR), Mid Wave Infrared (MWIR), and Long Wave Infrared (LWIR). Based on the various application of IR detector, the market can be segmented as Motion Sensing, Fire and Gas Detection, Spectroscopy, Smart Homes, Biomedical imaging, and others.
IR technologies spectrum ranges from near infra-red (NIR) to long wave infrared (LWIR) wavelengths. Each spectrum range offers different functionalities and hence caters to different application markets. Near IR are widely used in active vision enhancement, material analysis and high temperature thermography. Medium wave IR is used in thermography, material analysis and passive vision enhancement; whereas Long Wave IR also known as Far IR (FIR) is wide applicable for passive vision enhancement and Thermography.
Asia-Pacific was the largest market of IR detector in 2014. The market dominance of Asia-Pacific region is attributed to the rise in market penetration of IR detectors in consumer electronics segment and increased defense and homeland security budget of developing countries such as India and China. The IR detector market in Europe is largely dominated by Germany, France, the U.K., and Italy. ULIS (France) and Infratec (France) are two major IR detector players in Europe. Germany and U.K. together accounted for more than 50% of the European IR detector market in 2014, MCT and InGaAS holds the major market share among all other technology segment of IR detector market in the region. The large market size of IR detectors in North America is mainly due to the high military budgets and large expenditure on home land security in the U.S.
Some of the competitors in IR detector market are Vigo System S.A., Ulis, Texas Instruments Inc., Raytheon Co., Omron Corporation, Murata Manufacturing Co. Ltd., Melexis NV, Heimann Sensor GMBH, Hamamatsu Photonics KK, Flir Systems Inc., Excelitas Technologies Corp., and Dexter Research Center, Inc.