Since 1980’s, the use of micro-fabrication techniques to construct integrated systems has had a major impact on magnetic sensors with the help of micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) technology. The advancing and ongoing proliferation in the use of on-board magnetic sensors for consumer electronics applications and the role of on-board magnetic sensors in the ecosystem is driving the growth of magnetic sensor market.
“It has been estimated in a report published by Future Market Insights that the worldwide market for magnetic sensor will grow at a CAGR of 4.8% during the forecast period. The global magnetic sensor market will be valued at about US$ 1,906.1 Mn by the end of 2018, and is anticipated to increase significantly to reach US$ 3,053.5 Mn during the forecast period. The technological advancements in automotive technology, growing demand for smart products and increasing electrifications are some of the key factors that are driving the growth of global magnetic sensor market.”
Opportunities and Challenges
The global magnetic sensor market has advanced considerably. Performance is now good enough to enable applications requiring portability, and small size or low cost. Mainframe instruments are evolving into desktop systems, backpack-mounted systems into hand-held units, and vehicle-mounted systems into airborne systems. The new paradigm will generate changes broadly analogous to those driven by the development of personal computers. However, many opportunities and challenges remain.
The most promising commercial opportunities are those for which compact instruments with moderate performance are required in significant numbers. Unfortunately, the original drivers do not satisfy all these constraints. Similarly, although portable instruments are required in large numbers for explosives detection, achieving sufficient sensitivity is challenging. Some important laboratory applications remain similarly out of reach, because of limitations on mass range. However, on-line monitoring of chemical synthesis and food safety are both suitable applications. Success in these markets should allow other applications, and foster the performance improvements needed.
The most significant challenge for magnetic sensor market is that miniaturizing components such as sources and filters has relatively little impact on overall cost. The two largest contributors to the overall cost of manufacturing are assembly and alignment of the ion optical system, and the vacuum pumps. Nevertheless, recent developments have shown that investment in MEMS can pay dividends, since its ability to provide precision alignment can reduce assembly costs, and provision of sub-components as packaged modules can reduce downtime and the lifetime costs of servicing.
The cost of conventional pumps will clearly reduce as volumes rise. As a result, magnetic sensor should address some markets at costs that cannot be matched by conventional instruments. If the performance and reliability of magnetic sensor can be improved and sizes reduced, significant gains may be achieved. Systems based on integrated vacuum chambers and MEMS-based pumps would open new markets for hand-held instruments. The ability of a mass spectrometer to act as a universal gas sensor would then allow replacement of dedicated chemical sensors, with applications ranging from engine emission monitoring to point-of-care diagnosis of cancer and hazard detection.
Some of the pre-eminent trends that the magnetic sensor market is witnessing today, includes growing demand for magnetic sensors from automotive industry and increasing initiatives on promoting electric vehicle. Hence, magnetic sensors is advancing and becoming a key enabling technology for the growing automotive and IoT industry markets.
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