The market study covers the present scenario and growth prospects of the global laser diode market for 2017-2021. The report also lists industrial, military and defense, medical, and communications as the four major application segments of which the industrial segment dominated the market with a revenue share of more than 31%.
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Technavio analysts highlight the following three market drivers that are contributing to the growth of the global laser diode market:
- Increasing adoption of laser-based treatments
- Increase in demand for green lasers
- Growing demand for automotive laser headlamps
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Increasing adoption of laser-based treatments
Medical laser therapy has become one of the most common non-surgical medical procedures. Non-invasive laser procedures are used in various fields such as ophthalmology, dermatology, cardiovascular, oncology-related surgery, and cosmetic surgery. The easy payment plans and availability of a wide variety of options have made non-surgical procedures accessible to many patients. The use of newer technologies has led to a rise in the adoption of minimally invasive surgery that offers quick recovery, shorter hospital stays, and less risk of infection.
“Laser diodes are the best-suited for use in medical applications because they are small, cheap, and have low power requirements. Low power diode laser systems are used for the treatment of soft tissue. Higher power diode laser systems are used in medical aesthetics and dentistry. Diode laser systems are also used in medical applications such as performing delicate surgical procedures on the eye,” says Raghu Raj Singh, a lead analyst at Technavio for embedded systems research.
Increase in demand for green lasers
Green lasers are employed as a laser pointer in guns, rifles, and other high-tech weapons. Green lasers are also used as a rescue light, as they can form a continuous line in the dark, due to which they can be seen from a far distance. Temperature differences do not affect performance; therefore, green lasers can be used in the desert as well as in the mountains covered with ice. The demand for green lasers is expected to rise with rising military and defense spending, as it can be used for rescue operations and can be employed in weapons for aiming purposes. This will propel the demand for green laser diodes during the forecast period.
Green laser light is more visible to a human eye compared to any other color. The human eye is more sensitive to the shorter wavelength of green light as compared with red laser light, due to which green laser lights appear brighter. For instance, THALES, a safety and security solutions provider, has designed a gun-mounted laser named GLOW, which uses green laser. Due to the high visibility of green laser, GLOW is used to warn personnel not to approach further in military areas.
Growing demand for automotive laser headlamps
Automotive laser headlamps are laser-assisted headlamps, which use laser diodes and a phosphorous lens. Automotive laser headlamps provide the longest range of light compared with any other headlight technology, enabling improved visibility for drivers. These headlamps are mainly adopted by luxury car makers for use as high-beam headlamps in combination with low-beam LED headlamps. For example, BMW i8 and Audi R8 LMX are the first two vehicles to use laser headlamps.
Car manufacturers are focusing on miniaturization of the headlight systems without compromising on light intensity. Laser diodes have a small size, which enables automotive companies to miniaturize headlight systems.
“Laser diode provides a high intensity of the beam, which is four times that of an LED, which will provide increased road safety due to the improved vision of drivers. The expected adoption of automotive laser headlamps due to increasing trend of miniaturization of headlight systems in cars will drive the demand for laser diodes,” says Raghu.
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