The global UV LED market will increase from $288m in 2017 to $526m in 2020 while it rises at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 34% during 2015-2020, projects LEDinside (a division of TrendForce).
UV LEDs are used particularly in industry for curing, printing, exposure and other major applications, maintaining strong demand that is expected to grow further as most countries worldwide have endorsed energy-saving policies and ratified the Minamata Convention on mercury.
“The largest source of revenue for UV LED suppliers in 2016 was the sales of UV-A LEDs,” notes research manager Joanne Wu. “Because UV-A LEDs are mainly used for curing, some UV LED suppliers have entered the curing module market to further increase their profitability in this business.”
LED companies from South Korea and Japan were the dominant UV LED package suppliers by revenue in 2016. The top five were Nichia, Nitride Semiconductors, Seoul Viosys, LG Innotek and USHIO/Epitex. However, in 2017 South Korean LED companies are launching new series of UV-C LED products, contributing to growth in South Korean suppliers’ revenues and possibly affecting this ranking.
Taiwanese LED companies are also eager to move away from the highly competitive blue LED market and into the UV LED market due to the higher growth potential, notes the LEDinside report.
For example, Lextar has released UV LEDs for curing and printing applications. The firm is expected to accelerate product development and grow its client base this year. Likewise, LED chip maker High Power Lighting (HPL) and package supplier Epileds have formed a joint venture company Bioraytron that sells branded UV-C LED products. Bioraytron will also launch new UV-C LED products in second-half 2017, and HPL anticipates that 30% of its annual revenue for 2017 will come from UV LEDs.
Looking at demand by applications, the largest segment of demand for UV-A LEDs comes from curing. UV printing systems need LED modules that can produce a high level of irradiance, while UV exposure machines require LED modules that can achieve a high level of collimated light. In addition, UV LEDs are also being deployed in some special curing applications that have recently emerged on the market.
Finally, recent technological advances in UV-LED manufacturing have allowed them to be deployed in more applications, including consumer appliances such as air conditioners, air purifiers and still-water purifiers, which may be first to reach the consumer market, concludes the report.