Laser direct structuring equipment is used to manufacture electronic circuits in 3D molded interconnect device. 3D molded interconnect device is a thermoplastic integrated with electronic circuits. The laser beam of laser direct structuring equipment is applied for nanoseconds to manufacture 3D molded interconnect device. Laser direct structuring process consists of the following steps: injection molding, laser activation, metallization and assembly. In injection molding step, synthetic thermoplastic component is created through molding process. In laser activation step, a laser beam activates circuit layout in thermoplastic material directly from the computer without tools and copper attaches to the thermoplastic component. In metallization step, the thermoplastic component is cleaned and additives are formed in an electro-less copper bath. In the assembly step, the thermoplastic component which has high thermal resistance is ready for three-dimensional assembly.
Rising demand to integrate more electronic circuits in smaller spaces is increasing the demand for laser direct restructuring technology across the world. Laser direct restructuring also helps to eliminate components in electronic devices such as eliminating antennas in a smartphone thus reducing assembling time and device production cost. This is also driving the demand for laser direct structuring equipment across the world. With the advent of laser direct structuring technology, mechanical components of an electronic device when integrated well function both as a mechanical and electronic component.
Rising demand for fabrication of 3D molded interconnect device is leading to the rise in laser direct restructuring equipment.
Automotive components manufactures use laser direct structuring equipment. The components produced through laser direct structuring weight less than automotive components made through traditional process. This reduces vehicle weight and increases fuel efficiency and vehicle millage. This is leading to the rise in laser direct structuring equipment in automotive industry.
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A major opportunity for laser direct structuring equipment is the introduction of 5G mobile communication technology. With 5G, the global mobile communication network will expand leading to a rise in smart phones/ mobile phones antennas which will subsequently increase the demand for laser direct structuring equipment.
Global laser direct structuring equipment market can be segmented based on end-use industry and geography. The market when segmented by end-use industry are automotive, medical devices, consumer durables, networking, smartphones and mobile devices, telecommunication, data communication among others. FRIEDRICH Schwingtechnik, a German automotive component manufacturer developed antenna for automotive sector and manufactured with laser direct structuring equipment method.
Geographically laser direct restructuring equipment market is divided into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa and South America. North America is expected to be a major laser direct restructuring equipment market. The U.S. is expected to dominate the market followed by Canada and Mexico. Europe is expected to be a significant laser direct restructuring equipment market. LPKF Laser & Electronics who promoted laser direct structuring technology is based in Germany. Germany is expected to a key laser direct structuring equipment market in Europe followed by the U.K., France, Italy and Spain. Asia-Pacific is expected to be a major laser direct restructuring market. Chinese smart phone manufacturer Xiaomi used laser direct structuring equipment for its smartphone antennas which is driving the market in China. China is expected to dominate the market followed by Japan, South Korea and India. Middle East and Africa is expected to be another major laser direct structuring equipment market led by GCC and South Africa. GCC (Gulf Co-operation Council) consists of six Middle East countries of Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar, Oman, Kuwait and Bahrain. South America is expected to be a significant laser direct restructuring equipment market. Brazil is expected to dominate Brazil followed by Argentina.
The major players operating in the mining automation market are Molex LLC, LPKF Laser & Electronics AG, Hakko Products, LaserMicronics GmbH (Germany), SelectConnect Technologies, Amphenol Taiwan Corporation, Lanxess, Multiple Dimensions AG and EOS among others.