The increasing application of laser diodes in the telecom and healthcare industries is driving the global laser diode market. A laser diode is device in which a laser beam is formed at the diode junction.
A laser diode is very similar to a light emitting diode. A laser diode emits light through optical amplification based on stimulated emission of electromagnetic radiation. The construction of laser diodes is similar to PIN diodes. A PIN diode is a wide un-doped intrinsic semiconductor sandwiched between a p-type and n-type semiconductor.
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Both the p-type and n-type semiconductors are heavily doped. A laser diode’s active region resides in the intrinsic region. The carriers and electrons are pumped into an intrinsic region from the n-region to the p-region, respectively.
When compared to an LED, a laser diode has faster response time and focuses the radiation on a small area of up to 1 micrometer in diameter. A laser diode operates at a higher current. When compared to an LED, a laser diode operates with 10 time’s greater current than a normal LED diode.
In LEDs, the output light increases steadily as the diode current is increased. In a laser diode, laser light is not generated until the current reaches the threshold level. Vendors offer laser diodes in a variety of packaged types. The most commonly available laser diodes in the market are TO5, TO3, C-mount, high-heat load package, and others. The diode laser market is witnessing wide application in analytics, industrial, telecom, and biomedical.
Laser diode analytical applications are flourishing in the market. Distributed feedback laser diodes are used for analytical applications such as detecting traces of gas. Monitoring the gas traces in manufacturing sites is a critical task of semiconductor manufacturing plants. There are various industrial applications of laser diodes such as aircraft manufacturing, laser light shows, and others. Aircraft manufacturers use laser diode modules to assemble large sections of airliners to tight tolerances.
Laser diodes are also used in the construction industry for marking and drilling. Infrared laser diodes are considered as ideal illumination sources for machine vision applications. In biomedical applications, laser diodes are used in X-rays and MRIs, cellular and tissue fluorescence, particle and droplet sizing, DNA analysis, flow cytometry, medical imaging, blood analysis, fluorescent microscopy, confocal microscopy, X-ray film marking, and a pointing source for surgical lasers.
In the telecom industry, 1.3 and 1.55 micrometer band laser diodes are used as a main light source, and have less transmission loss in the band. Several developments in laser diodes with reference to technology, the steady growth of the market, along with recent developments and innovations are among the factors expected to drive the global laser diode market during the forecast period.
Laser Diode Market: Drivers and Challenges
The increasing adoption of green laser diodes in medical laser applications, biotechnology, aerospace, and others are significantly driving the global laser diode market. The features of laser diodes like low power requirement and portable size and weight with high efficiency are increasing their adoption in various applications of industries, which is significantly contributing to the growth of the global laser diode market.
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The growing demand for laser hair removal and tattoo removal is expected to contribute significantly to the growth of the global laser diode market during the forecast period.
There are operating challenges, such as if high current is passed through the laser diode, it may burn. Current must be regulated carefully through the laser diode.
This technical issue is expected to have a major negative impact on the global laser diode market during the forecast period. However, manufacturers are continuously focused on improving laser diodes, and are expected to overcome this restraint during the forecast period.
Laser Diode Market: Segmentation
Segmentation based on wavelength:
The laser diode market is segmented based on wavelength, i.e. infrared, ultraviolet, visible, and others.
Segmentation based on mode:
The laser diode market is segmented based on mode, i.e. single mode and multi-mode.
Segmentation based on application:
The laser diode market is segmented based on application, i.e. healthcare, telecom, manufacturing, media and entertainment, and others.
In July 2017, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation announced the launch of an industry leading high-power 638 nanometer wavelength red laser diode. It is expected to have a simple optical design, lower cost, and reduced size.
Some of the key players in the laser diode market are Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, IPG Photonics, Panasonic Semiconductor Solutions, OSRAM Opto Semiconductors, TRUMPF, Coherent, Jenoptik AG, Rofin-Sinar Technologies, Inc., Nichia Corp., JDS Uniphase Corp., and others.
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