The market study covers the present scenario and growth prospects of the global nanophotonics market for 2016-2020. The report also lists nanophotonic diodes (LED and OLED), nanophotonic near-field optics, nanophotonic solar cells, nanophotonic ICs, and others as the four major product segments. In 2015, nanophotonic diodes dominated the market, accounting for a market share of close to 96%.
According to Navin Rajendra, a lead analyst at Technavio for semiconductor equipment research, “Nanophotonic structures provide endless opportunities to develop compact, energy-efficient, and high performance electronic components.”
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Technavio hardware and semiconductor analysts highlight the following four market drivers that are contributing to the growth of the global nanophotonics market:
- Focus on increasing solar power capacity
- Miniaturization of semiconductor components
- Increasing demand for thin and flexible displays
- Rising FTTX connections
Focus on increasing solar power capacity
The depletion of non-renewable sources of energy such as coal, petroleum, and natural gas is driving the adoption of renewable sources of energy such as wind and solar energy to produce electricity. Several countries across the globe are focusing on increasing the solar power capacity. This will drive the demand for nanophotonic technology among photovoltaic (PV) cell manufacturers for the development of low-cost and highly energy-efficient PV cells.
Miniaturization of semiconductor components
The increasing demand for compact, energy-efficient, and high performance electronic devices necessitates miniaturization of semiconductor components. Currently, electronic devices use semiconductors with circuit line widths in the 0-20 nm range. However, it is expected that ultraminiature circuits, with line widths in the 0-10 nm range could be introduced during the forecast period. The growing need for miniaturization of semiconductor components is driving the demand for nanophotonic technology. Semiconductor manufacturers are integrating silicon nanophotonic components into complementary metal-oxide semiconductor (CMOS) ICs. This is expected to provide higher data transmission speed between ICs.
Increasing demand for thin and flexible displays
Flexible displays find application in several devices such as e-paper, smartphones, smartwatch, smart TVs, and tablets. Many of the industry participants are working toward the development of flexible displays to enhance certain attributes such as weight, flexibility, display resolution, and battery life in the above devices. Commercial products with flexible displays were released in the market in 2013. The global flexible display market is expected to grow at a CAGR of close to 99% in terms of unit shipment during the forecast period.
“The increasing demand for curved displays will increase the demand for nanophotonic technology. This is because the flexible display manufacturers are using nanomaterials such as nanowires for the development of ultrathin transistors to create flexible OLED displays,” says Navin.
Rising FTTX connections
Newly developed network architectures like fiber to the X (FTTX) help reduce the installation price for high bandwidth services to the home. These architectures include fiber-to-the-curb (FTTC), fiber-to-the-node (FTTN), fiber-to-the-home (FTTH), and fiber-to-the-premises (FTTP), where premises may indicate homes, small businesses, or apartments.
FTTH network uses fiber optic cable instead of copper, telephone, or cable wires to deliver high-speed service to the home. Currently, fiber optic technology utilizes light instead of electricity for relaying IP packets to provide two-way transmission speed of up to 100 Mbit/s. Thus, the emergence of high-speed FTTH service will raise the demand for fiber optic cables and fiber optical components such as optical connector, optical switch, optical sensor. This will accelerate the demand for nanomaterials for the development of nanostructure-based optical devices used in the establishment of FTTH networks.
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