Surface vision and inspection market is expected to undergo significant growth due to rapid technological advancement over the forecast period. Growing customer expectations and demand for improved quality products are driving growth for various applications of the technology.
The equipment is increasingly providing the ability to perform inspection automatically through advanced solutions. These solutions include machine vision (MV) technology which assist manufacturers in optimizing efficiency in production process, provide reliable scrutiny results, enable superior quality control, high efficiency, and improved customer satisfaction.
Machine Vision is increasingly being adopted by manufacturers for visual inspection which entail repeatability of measurements, high speed, and high magnification. The technology is progressively being preferred owing to its ability to count objects, read serial numbers, identify surface defects, and errors. Some of the common defects of intermediate components include laps, guide marks, scabs, seams, steel, and twists.
It is increasingly being utilized in the semiconductor industry for fabrication. The technology is used to inspect silicon wafers, processor chips, and components such as resistors and capacitors with considerable precision and accuracy at extraordinary speed.
The market players have been offering various solutions with increased efficiency and reduced prices to enable greater market presence. Technological solutions such as 3D vision using laser triangulation is expected to offer a significant opportunity for industry growth due to rising applications in solar cells, automotive, semiconductor, and printing industry. The technology is cost efficient as it does not use multiple cameras, which are used in most other solutions. Additionally, the technology has been applied in electric printing for examining patterns on flex circuits and RFID circuitry. It facilitates significant reduction in production costs with high accuracy and increased speed, further improving quality.
However, increasing manufacturing errors, shortage of skilled labor, and increasing wages are escalating financial burdens on manufacturers. Additionally, lack of adequate standardization practices at present is expected to hamper industry growth.
On the basis of component, the industry is segmented into camera, lighting equipment, optics, hardware & software, and frame grabber. Cameras presently holds significant revenue share due to constant improvement in micro-chip and LED technologies which are increasingly being used in cameras.
These technologies enable production of increasingly reliable, smaller, and economical cameras. Manufacturers use digital and smart cameras in place of analog cameras as they as they facilitate greater efficiency. Hardware & software systems are expected to record significant growth owing to growing demand for advanced and sophisticated solutions that improve incorporation with other automation products.
By application, the industry can be segmented into electronics & electrical, food & beverage, postal sourcing & logistics, automotive, and medical. The electronics and electrical industry currently holds significant revenue share which can be attributed to numerous testing applications across fabricated systems and chips.
Further, the automotive sector is expected to witness significant growth owing to increased chances of production defects and errors in automobiles. Manufacturers are increasingly applying vision and inspection systems to detect functional and cosmetic errors. In the medical sector, the technology is used for efficient label tracking and drug synthesis.
North America is presently the dominant region in terms of revenue share and is expected to exhibit moderate growth across the forecast period. Increasing consumption can be attributable to significant volume of sales of machine vision and components, including cameras and application specific MV systems.
The numerous regulatory clauses by authorities such as U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) are enabling widespread use of the technology. These bodies are increasingly implementing regulatory standards for maintaining uniformity in manufacturing processes.
The Asia-Pacific region is expected to witness significant growth over the forecast period due to a considerable rise in manufacturing activities, growing automation of factories, increasing emphasis on achieving operational efficiency, and product quality. Growing investments in production and automation of assembly line, particularly in China, India, Korea, and Japan are expected to significantly drive growth in the region.
The prominent players in the industry include Cognex Corporation, Baumer Inspection, ETS SuperVision BV, Microscan Systems Inc., Omron Corporation, Adept Technology, Edmund Optics Inc., Industrial Vision Systems Ltd., Perception Inc, Toshiba Teli Corporation, Mitrox Imaging, and Vitronic GmbH.
Cognex Corporation emerged as a significant player and its Surface Inspection System Division (SISD) was acquired by AMETEK Inc, a global manufacturer of electro-mechanical devices and electronic equipment. This will help them expand their capabilities in the non-destructive process inspection market leveraging AMETEK’s complementary products and technologies within its vision systems segment.
Research Support Specialist, USA