UV LED Market - Growth, Trends, Forecasts (2020 - 2025)
The UV LED market was valued at USD 294.8 million in 2019, and it is expected to reach USD 870.7 million by 2025, registering a CAGR of 20.1% during the forecast period (20202025). UV LEDs do not contain toxic mercury and are often found in CCFL technology. They are much smaller and more durable than CCFLs and are more resistant to vibration and impact, resulting in less product breakage and reduced waste and maintenance expense as well. As a result, it creates an avenue for the new companies in the market; thus, propelling the market for this technology during the forecast period. Also, the existing players and startups are looking for viable options to capitalize on this growing trend. The startups are expected to adopt UVC LEDs compared to existing players, owing to the lack of legacy bias toward the germicidal lamps.
The ecofriendly composition of UV LED is driving the market. The UV LEDs witnesses a rapid adoption and becomes viable alternatives due to their lower energy consumption than mercury bulb lamps. The overall heat generated by the UV LEDs is considerably low. The UV LED lamps reaches a maximum of 40°C, whereas mercury lamps heat up to more than 60°C. Further, the European Commission periodically reviews RoHS exemptions. Currently, mercury lamps are planned to be expelled under RoHS, owing to their effects on the environment. This factor leads to significant power savings and a higher ROI in the long run.
Rising adoption of UV Curing drives the market. The ink revenues are growing faster than the overall graphics and packaging market; users are taking advantage of instant drying to improve their production efficiencies and exploit both decorative and functional properties of the inks and coatings. Radiation curing, including ultraviolet (UV) curing technology, is now being increasingly used in various sectors of applications, as the clean and green technology helps in increasing productivity, compared to the other traditional methods of curing.
While the print volumes in graphics have been falling by 3.0% per year, between 2012 and 2022, the radiation curing print segment and the still booming packaging market are poised to expand their market share. The radiation curing segment will grow by 25.0% by volume and 33.6% in value terms across this period, according to FESPA.
Further, with the recent outbreak of Covid19, the UV LED market is witnessing a significant surge in demand due to its usage in disinfecting the surfaces and germs killing properties. In many countries, such as China and the United States, are using UV lamps to clean the surfaces and prevent people from getting infected. According to photonics media, Covid19 has increased the demand for UV LEDs that disinfect spaces.
According to Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation Handbook1, one minute of UVC light sterilizes more than 90% of the coronavirus. Also, tests conducted by Chinese agencies on air appliances equipped with the violeds UV LED sterilization technology has demonstrated a 97% reduction in airborne virus particles.
Furthermore, in May 2020, Seoul Viosys announced that customer inquiries for its violeds UV LED products, which are used for sterilizing bacteria, increased more than five times over the previous month, which is fueled by concerns over the continuing global spread of the virus causing COVID19.
Key Market Trends
Sterilization to Significantly Contribute to Market Growth
The scope for a UV LED is becoming abundant in sterilization applications, as it is being proved to be the cheapest way to provide safe drinking water across the globe. This also provides monetary benefits to the players with increasing consumption.
The industry players are finding the huge potential due to which they are highly investing and further entering into this sector. Few studies suggest that the utilization of UVbased water disinfection is highly efficient than chlorine method, as the UVbased water disinfection operates in 120 mW irradiation capacity and a wavelength of 270 nm, which takes approximately two minutes in reducing waste by 9099.9%.
In September 2019, Genome BC invested USD 1 million in Acuva Technologies for developing UVLED technology for water purification. Further, in August 2019, Fraunhofer researchers were investigating a greener and more efficient alternative, which uses UV LEDs to destroy bacterial DNA. The technology is suitable for disinfecting the brewing water and for disinfecting the caps and closures for bottled beer, soft drinks, and the mineral water during the filling process.
In the United States, with the prediction of investment in water infrastructure in the coming years, water disinfection and sanitization requirement and the presence of regulation in the country resulted in improved demand. There have been incidents, such as 16 million cases of acute gastroenteritis occurring each year at the United States community water systems due to drinking water.
Further, increasing concerns over waterborne diseases have augmented the increase in awareness among the people for consuming treated water. The growing awareness of the benefits of treated water consumption has impacted the UV LED market that caters to this segment, i.e., UV C LEDs.
Also, US EPA estimated that one out of three Americans consuming water from the streams was susceptible to drinking polluted water. The traditional water purification system has been costly and considered vulnerable to mercury leakage. With the improvements in the LED life in this spectrum and counter developments to address the inefficiency of UV LED in the segment has improved the market.
AsiaPacific to Hold a Major Growth in the Market
AsiaPacific is anticipated to gain significant market growth during the forecast period. Vendors based on Japan and China are making major investments in line with the expanding applications of UV LEDs such as disinfection and sterilization, in addition to their expansion activities.
One of the major vendors, Nichia Corporation, Japan, in April 2019 launched its 280 nm UVC NCSU334A “deep blue” ultravioletoutputting LED, which is intended to address the massmarket needs for air sterilization and water purification by using the solidstate lighting. Moreover, the company had considerable success with the innovation and development of its UVA LEDs, specifically designed for resin curing applications.
Moreover, coating companies in China are investing heavily in intelligent manufacturing. The international brands and the domestic players are joining the new wave of investment. In February 2019, the Hubei province announced that ShenzhenUVChemTech LTD and Yihua announced to invest CNY 8 billion to construct the world’s largest UV curing material project. In this project, 20 thousand ton (per year) of photoinitiators, 100 thousand ton (per year) of LED curing coatings, and 80 thousand ton (per year) of monomer resins will be produced.
Furthermore, in South Korea, the growing demand for organic food and freshwater is expected to increase the demand for UV LEDs for horticultural applications and water purification. In March 2020, UNICEF partnered with South Korea to provide water and sanitation services for the vulnerable population (mostly children) in areas hit by violence in Iraq, such as Anbar, Ninewa, and Salah alDin. The country has contributed USD 1 million for the cause.
Further, UV LEDs are being used in medical equipment used for phototherapy, drug discovery, DNA analysis, and vitamin analysis. The South Korean government is actively making investments in the pharma sector to help drug development and innovation within the healthcare field. Government agencies related to new drug development have outlined the "National New Drug Development Research Project," which is expected to invest WON 3.5 trillion (USD 2.9 billion) over ten years from 2021.
The UV LED market is highly fragmented due to various players providing high competition. The major players are striving to gain a sustainable competitive advantage through their innovation, and several new players, like Osram, are making significant investments in the market. Key players are Lumileds Holding BV, LG Innotek Co. Ltd. Recent developments in the market are
March 2020 Nichia is aiming to extend its dominance to the UV market following its showcase at the RadTech 2020 conference and exhibition in Orlando. Nichia expects its UV portfolio to play a significant role in completely replacing conventional mercury lamps and their associated environmental issues.
May 2019 Klaran launched a new 60mW UVC LED and Reactor Prototype for water disinfection, demonstrating the NSF Class A performance. In the advanced prototype reactor, the 60mW LED demonstrated effective and affordable water treatment at flow rates up to three liters per minute.
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