Sales of refractive optical elements to cross $300m in 2020

26th July 2019
Alex Lynn

Refractive optical elements continue to find maximum applications in semiconductor manufacturing. Attractive opportunities are likely to reside in the laser material processing segment. At an estimated yearly growth of just-over 8.5% in the revenue, the global refractive optical elements market is likely to cross the valuation of $300m in 2020.

“While both are forecast to hold a collective share of just-under 1/3rd of the total market value in 2020, the applications in metrology and fibre and waveguide coupler also account for significant individual value shares in the market,” said a senior market research analyst.

The study offers an excellent sales outlook for micro lens array that currently contributes around 80% share to the market value. Refractive homogeniser on the other side is rapidly gaining ground, as per the report projections.

Contributors to refractive optical elements market value

Predominantly driven by the demand in semiconductor manufacturing and laser material processing, the sales of refractive optical elements are likely to expand at a robust pace over the upcoming years.

Telecommunication and electronics & semiconductors remain the top end use industries registering maximum consumption of refractive optical elements, and are likely to account for nearly 50% of the global revenue of refractive optical elements market, estimated for 2020.

The report points to healthcare and energy domains maintaining the moderately growing consumption of refractive optical elements.

Europe atop the refractive optical elements market

The regional outlook analysis reveals that with a cumulative revenue share of more than 40% in the global market, Europe and North America continue to dominate the global landscape. China and SEAP are projected to represent the next important regional markets for refractive optical elements.

While a growing number of businesses entering the micro-optics space, refractive optical elements manufacturers are witnessing positive revenue growth prospects in recent years. Europe, the largest regional territory for such businesses, is however observing an additional boost by the emergence of a large number of venture capitalists directing their investments to SMEs operating in refractive optical elements landscape.

Growing government expenditure on micro-optics R&D is also identified to favour the penetration of refractive optical elements across various regions, especially in emerging regional markets. Another factor projected to support sales of refractive optical elements across SEAP, particularly China, is strong market presence of Tier 1 manufacturers of consumer electronics and semiconductor devices. The report points to attractive growth prospects for Latin America and MEA, attributed to an improving R&D scenario.

Research prompts at strong demand potential

An ongoing R&D project at SEAS (the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences) is targeting the development of a metacorrector that effectively addresses the loopholes left by a majority of conventional methods used for aberration correction. The metacorrector technology intends to surpass the material limitations of the lenses that often hinder the final performance, and thus makes use of traditional diffractive and/or refractive optical elements – delivering improved performance.

This and more such R&D ventures are likely to introduce high potential revenue generation avenues for manufacturers consistently striving for innovations in micro-optics components, including refractive optical elements.

Moreover, the prevailing university spinoffs and a growing number of entry-level companies foraying into the Tier 3 space of refractive optical elements landscape are more likely to boost production as well as revenue growth of refractive optical elements market at a global level.

The analysis of global refractive optical elements landscape reaffirms dominance of the top three players, including Jenoptik AG, Broadcom Inc., and SÜSS MicroTec SE.

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