Ion Beam Technology Market: Key to Micro- and Nano- Structuring
As nanoscience and technology pave the way for faster, more flexible, and more powerful electronics than ever before, scientists and researchers are constantly working on advanced techniques to speed up the development of such technologies. In recent years, the ion beam technology market has garnered substantial interest, for application of this technology in nanomaterials synthesis and the fabrication of nanoscale devices with unique optical and magnetic properties. In addition to modulating the physical-chemical properties of materials, ion beam technology allows the controlled incorporation of impurities or dopants on semiconductor wafers.
A new era of electronic-integrated systems, in general, and ion beam technology, in particular, warrant an in-depth understanding and unbiased assessment of the ion beam technology market. Transparency Market Research, in its new report, offers a detailed viewpoint on the ion beam technology market, for a wide range of applications of this ion beam technology in the semiconductor, material science, and engineering spaces. It also identifies the headwinds and tailwinds of the market to arm stakeholders with the necessary information for critical decision-making.
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Ion Beam Technology Market: Historical Review and Technical Evolution
Ion beam technology wasn’t used until the 1970s, thereafter providing a superior doping technology for the emerging semiconductor industry. With the development of microelectronics and wide acceptance of the term – nanoscience, ion beam technology has attracted great interest from the research community, and has gained broader applications in the modern industry. In 2018, the ion beam technology market exceeded a valuation of US$ 400 million, and continues to witness a growing number of players entering the market.
Ion beam lithography has been gaining higher preference over electron beam lithography; however, it has incurred a few limitations - high design costs and time-consuming process to pattern an entire semiconductor wafer. With the lack of standardization in the design processes and increased time-to-market for ion beam technologies, key stakeholders remained focused on leveraging new opportunities in the emerging applications of this technology.
Ion Beam Etching Systems Capture Significant Revenue Share
Ion beam etching systems continue to account for higher demand as compared to ion beam deposition systems. With potential application in micro electro mechanical system (MEMS) devices and the nano-machining of magnetic transducers, ion beam etching systems have also witnessed higher investments and innovation. Further, sensing the need for semiconductor manufacturers to develop devices with improved density, tight tolerance, and high yield, key market players are focused on providing systems that allow flexible configuration for both, advanced research and production applications.
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The application of ion beam technology in the coating of dielectric films has increased rapidly in recent years, and its use in the frequency trimming of BAW (bulk acoustic wave) filters is likely to boost the ion beam technology market, estimated to witness 8.5% CAGR over the next five years. Considering the broader evolution of technologies and their applications, ion beam system providers are forced to innovate. Focus has been mainly shifted towards developing technologically-advanced ion beam etching equipment, due to the spike in the adoption of thinned wafers across various sectors, especially in modern-day smartphones, and the rapidly emerging trend of the miniaturization of semiconductor and electronic components.
Ion Beam Technology Market: Stakeholders’ Strategies to Secure a Strong Position
As miniaturization has been proven to remarkably improve the performance of integrated circuits (ICs), and at the same time reduce the cost per information unit, the development of ion beam technologies has grown continuously. Constant evolution of the technology has also been observed, as highly-precise ion beam implantations are necessary for manufacturing miniaturized devices with improved performance. With the increasing intensity of competition in the ion beam technology market, product innovation and development, along with filing patents of the technology remained the key strategies of the market players. These aspects came into play when Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation patented its ion beam system and focused ion beam apparatus, in December 2018 and January 2019, respectively. Such strategic moves will continue to influence other stakeholders to take new initiatives and build effective growth strategies.
Ion beam technology market players have been on a strategic partnership spree to strengthen their technical expertise and bring new products into the global market. For instance, in 2017, Meyer Burger Technology Ltd. signed a major contract with REC group for its existing and next-generation cell or module technologies. The company was also awarded a contract for the delivery and installation of its industry-leading DW 288 Series 3 diamond wire cutting platform. Further, product innovation through consistent R&D investments in the existing technology also remains a key focus area of market stakeholders.
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Ion Beam Technology Market: The Competitive Landscape
The ion beam technology market shows moderate consolidation, with leading players such as Veeco Instruments Inc., Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation, Canon Anelva Corporation, Scia Systems GmbH collectively accounting for nearly 55% of the revenue share. A range of R&D activities, expansion of operations and product offerings, and acquisitions of other players in the same line of business continue to define the competitive landscape, while the involvement of a large number of global and local players in the market rapidly increases the degree of competition.
Industry-institution collaborations have remained a staple for research activities and product analysis; however, in some cases, institutions become the buyers, which has worked to the advantage of key players in the ion beam technology market.
In February 2019, Veeco Instruments Inc. received orders for its Spectrum Ion beam Sputtering (IBS) system and Sirius Optical Monitor system from the Fraunhofer Institute for Telecommunications (HHI), to develop and manufacture laser facet coatings and other micro-optical devices. In January 2019, Scia Systems GmbH won orders from the Institute of Precision Optical Engineering (IPOE) for its scia Trim 200 and scia Coat 500.
The Analyst Viewpoint
Report authors maintain an optimistic view of the ion beam technology market, which is projected to register a CAGR of over 7% during the period of 2019-2027. This predictive growth of the market is expected to attract the entry of new players, which will intensify the degree of competition as well as rivalry in terms of technology upgrades and new product development. As a number of players are investing a large share of their profits in R&D activities, analysts feel that, standardization of design processes will be improved and design cost will be reduced in the coming years.
Ion Beam Technology: Definition/Overview
- Ion beam systems have been commercially produced, primarily for large semiconductor manufacturers, for more than twenty years now. These systems use focused ion beams that can be operated at high-beam currents for site-specific milling or sputtering, or at low-beam currents for imaging. In addition, ion beam technology is also commonly used to prepare samples for TEMs (Transmission Electron Microscopes).
- Ion beam technology is widely applied in the fields of material science and biological science on its coupling with an SEM column to develop a dual-beam FIB (Focused Ion Beam) system. Moreover, new advancements are being constantly carried out for nanotechnology and material characterization.
- The global ion beam technology market is projected to expand at a CAGR of over 7% during the forecast period, and reach value of around US$ 780 Mn by 2027.
Global Ion Beam Technology Market: Regional Overview
- In 2018, the ion beam technology market in Asia Pacific generated the highest revenue across the world.
- The dominance of the region’s ion beam technology market is anticipated to further increase in the near future, owing to the presence of a large number of market players, coupled with extensive research and development activities taking place in the field of ion beam technology. Moreover, high penetration of nanotechnology in developing countries, such as China and India, is projected to drive the ion beam technology market in the region during the forecast period.
- Furthermore, although North America is expected to lose some of its share in the global ion beam technology market by the end of the forecast period, it is likely to maintain its second-largest position in the global ion beam technology market during the forecast period.
Global Ion Beam Technology Market: Trends
- A key trend that impacts the global ion beam technology market is the increasing use of focused ion beams for failure analysis.
- Common causes of failure include manufacturing defects, design errors, misuse, assembly errors, improper maintenance, inadequate quality assurance, unforeseen operating conditions, and improper heat treatments.
- Focused ion beam systems are particularly effective in analyzing invisible defects from the surface of materials.
- Moreover, focused ion beam systems are also used in the manufacturing industry for improving the quality of products during development, detecting the primary cause of failure, and preventing the recurrence of failure. This trend is directly driving the global ion beam technology market.
Global Ion Beam Technology Market: Drivers, Opportunities, and Restraints
- The global ion beam technology market has witnessed strong growth over the last few years. One of the major drivers of the ion beam technology market is the increasing demand for thinned wafers across the globe.
- The increasing demand for smaller die and thinned wafers across various sectors, especially the smartphone and smart card industry, is the primary factor expected to fuel the demand for and innovation in thin wafer processing equipment from 2019 to 2027.
- Thinned wafers are increasingly being used across various MEMS devices, memory and logic devices, and power devices, as they offer better form factors, along with high heat dissipation and improved electric performance.
- In addition, the current trend of miniaturization of devices with superior performance and lower cost of configuration is also anticipated to boost the demand for thinned wafers, with a capacity even below 100 µm and 50 µm.
- These factors are, in turn, expected to drive the demand for technologically-advanced ion beam etching equipment to achieve the desired miniaturization of semiconductor devices, thereby driving the global ion beam technology market during the forecast period.
Global Ion Beam Technology Market: Key Segments
The global ion beam technology market has been segmented based on technology, application, and region.
- By Technology:
- In terms of technology, the global ion beam technology market has been classified into ion beam deposition systems and ion beam etching systems.
- By Application:
- In terms of application, the global ion beam technology market has been categorized into frequency trimming of BAW filters, surface trimming of SAW filters, thickness and pole width correction of thin film recording heads, and coating of dielectric film.
- By Region:
- Based on region, the global ion beam technology market has been classified into North America (U.S., Canada, and Rest of North America), Europe (U.K., Italy, Germany, Eastern Europe including Russia, and Rest of Europe), Asia Pacific (China, Taiwan, Korea, and Rest of Asia Pacific), the Middle East & Africa (UAE, Israel, and Rest of Middle East & Africa), and South America (Brazil and Rest of South America).
Global Ion Beam Technology Market: Competition Landscape
Product innovation and development is a key strategy being adopted by several leading players operating in the global ion beam technology market. New product innovation is necessary to face the intense competition in the ion beam technology market. Companies in the ion beam technology market are involved in R&D activities in order to develop innovative products, which helps them to gain a higher market share in the ion beam technology market than their competitors. Key companies operating in the global ion beam technology market and profiled in the research report include
- Meyer Burger Technology AG
- Carl Zeiss AG
- Veeco Instruments Inc.
- Scia Systems GmbH
- 4Wave Incorporated
- Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation
- Canon Anelva Corporation
- Raith GmbH
Companies operating in the global market are also focusing on expanding their businesses through strategic acquisitions and partnerships with other ion beam technology providers.
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