RF/microwave shipments to increase almost 40% per year through 2007
Shipments of radio frequency (RF)/microwave wireless products for industrial monitoring and control applications to markets in North America will increase at a 39.6% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from $154.1 million in 2004 to $419.3 million in 2007, according to new research by Venture Development Corp. (VDC).
Shipments of radio frequency (RF)/microwave wireless products for industrial monitoring and control applications to markets in North America will increase at a 39.6% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from $154.1 million in 2004 to $419.3 million in 2007, according to new research by Venture Development Corp. (VDC). The study, “The North American Market for Wireless (RF/Microwave) Monitoring and Control Products in Discrete and Process Manufacturing,” is based on research conducted in spring 2005.
VDC reports that factors contributing to this robust growth rate include:
General growth in the awareness of wireless technology benefits;
Lower installation and maintenance costs versus wired networks;
Increased use of Ethernet and distributed networking in industrial automation; and
New wireless standards, such as ZigBee, which are able to meet industrial users’ specific needs.
The reports says the market segment for wireless network products was the largest in 2004 and is expected to remain the largest in 2007. Wireless modems account for the largest share of these devices. However, higher market growth rates are forecast for wireless I/O devices, repeaters, and network access points. Connection of devices, such as actuators and sensors, through I/O devices with multiplexing of signals over networks typically reportedly provides cost effective solutions. Wireless access points, which allow tapping into wired LANs, are increasingly being used in industrial automation to give good coverage for mobile and other applications. Repeaters also provide the capability for broader and better coverage.
In addition, the study found that on-site operator interface terminals was the third-largest product market segment in 2004, but is forecast to become the second largest in 2007. The largest application for these is expected to be in mobile controller maintenance usage. These enable personnel to monitor and interact with equipment without having to be in a fixed location. This makes more efficient use of the time of personnel, leads to quicker fixes or adjustments, and thus higher productivity, and profitability, and can free staff for use elsewhere.
—Jim Montague, news editor, Control Engineering, email@example.com