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The global IR LED market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 14.3% during the forecast period. An infrared light emitting diode (IR LED) refers to a SSL (solid-state lighting) mechanism that effuses light in the infrared range of the electromagnetic radiation spectrum. SSL mechanism utilizes semiconductor sources of illumination such as LEDs (Light Emitting Diodes), PLEDs (Polymer Light-Emitting Diodes) and OLEDs (Organic Light-Emitting Diodes), instead of electric filaments, plasma and gas. IR LED appears similar to a common LED; however, radiations of IR LEDs cannot be identified with human eye.
IR LEDs are being used in a large number of applications and devices in the surveillance industry, including CCTV camera, biometric ID solutions, image recognition and iris recognition. This makes surveillance industry the largest end user of IR LEDs. Moreover, these LEDs allow cheap and efficient production of infrared light and are widely being used in various consumer electronics products such as remote controls for televisions and infrared cameras.
The global IR LED market is expected to reach $784.8 million by 2023. Decreasing price of IR receivers, increasing use of IR sensors, growing use of IR LEDs in military applications and surging demand from surveillance industry are some of the major factors driving the global IR LED market. However, absence of global LED standardization is appearing as a challenge for the market.
Infrared LEDs are widely being used in various applications and devices of surveillance industry, due to which this industry is contributing the largest revenue to the global IR LED market. There has been a huge increase in the adoption of security cameras. These cameras are integrated with number of rings of IR LEDs to offer night vision capabilities. Increasing popularity of these cameras is expected to generate higher demand for IR LEDs, especially in China, the major producer of such cameras. Growth of the Chinese IR LED market is likely to propel the growth of the IR LEDs market in Asia-Pacific.
IR receivers and IR LEDs can together work as IR sensors, which also states that the increase or decrease in the individual prices of IR receivers and IR LEDs will impact the overall price of such formed sensors. The price of IR receivers has declined in the recent past, which consequently has augmented the demand for overall IR sensors, including IR LED.
Increased usage of IR sensors in several industries, including aerospace and defense, oil and gas, chemical-mining and pharmaceutical, is a key factor accelerating the demand for IR LEDs globally. North America has been the largest revenue contributor to the global IR sensor market, which led to higher demand for IR LEDs in the region. Growing demand for IR sensors in the U.K., France, Italy and Germany is likely to drive the market for IR LEDs in the European Union, over the next few years. However, Asia-Pacific is expected to report the highest growth in the adoption of IR sensors during the forecast period, which is likely to spearhead the growth of the IR LED market in this region.
IR LED offers night vision capability in military applications to provide effective vision in unclear atmospheric conditions, such as fog, smoke, dust and airborne obscurant. Night vision refers to the ability to see in total darkness, which is made possible by an amalgamation of acceptable intensity range and sufficient spectral range of electromagnetic spectrum. It is important in military applications to identify the position of weapon, whether it is being carried in a relaxed pose or from an aggressive viewpoint. In military applications, IR LED enables the spotting of targets, criminals and secret bombs, thereby, looking after the armed forces and offering ease of operation. Through these benefits, IR LEDs will continue to address the demand for night vision in military applications.
The applications of IR devices in the automotive industry include proximity, parking, lane detection and several others. However, IR LEDs are used with number of photodiodes or phototransistors to act as sensors in this industry. The IR LED revenue in the automotive industry is essentially linked to the market potential of the photodiodes and phototransistors. With increasing acceptance of sensor based technologies in the automotive sector, the market for photodiodes and phototransistors is expected to register significant growth over the next few years, thereby, generating higher demand for IR LEDs. Hence, the increasing demand from automotive industry is likely to propel the growth of the global IR LED market in near future.
Increasing acceptance of smart technologies and focus of consumers on safety and security will continue to spearhead the global IR LED market, over the next few years. Visible LED is a part of the lighting industry, whereas IR LED is a special type of visible LED that works in infrared range of electromagnetic spectrum. The growing market for lighting industry has been consequently driving the IR LED market.
The global IR LED market is highly fragmented, due to the presence of large number of regional and international players across the globe. Due to the fragmented nature of the market, the competition among global and regional players is high. It has also been observed that several large players are losing their market share owing to the introduction of new entrants, especially from China. Some of the major companies operating in the global IR LED market include EPILEDS, EPISTAR, EVERLIGHT, NICHIA., OSRAM Opto Semiconductors and Vishay Intertechnology.
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