The global ultrafast lasers market size was worth USD 1,783 million in 2021. It is expected to reach USD 6,223 million by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 16.91% during the forecast period (2022–2030). The term "ultrafast laser" refers to a class of lasers that produce extremely brief light pulses with durations of femtoseconds or picoseconds. This duration is close to the timelines of fundamental atomic and molecular processes and chemical reactions, which were previously unobservable by humans. Its capacity to provide energy at unfathomable rates enables ultrafast lasers to effortlessly examine fragile structures and effect minute changes at record speeds. Its unique properties have made possible the use of ultrashort pulse widths and exceptionally high peak intensities in processing materials. These lasers can remove material without transferring an enormous amount of energy to the surrounding surroundings, which can have significant benefits for many materials, including biological tissue, dielectrics, and metals. Pulse duration, pulse repetition rate, and average output power are critical characteristics that determine the operation of ultrafast and pulsed fiber lasers.
It is currently used for both fundamental research and commercial applications. Some main applications for ultrafast lasers are 3D photonic devices, data storage applications, 3D microfluidics & optofluidics, and glass bonding. Ultrafast lasers can be used for several specialized tasks, including resistor cutting, memory correction, hard-disk texturing, and quick prototyping. Additionally, ultrafast lasers are adaptable because they may function in infrared, visible, and shorter ultraviolet ranges. Due to benefits like improved dimensional precision, tighter tolerances, and the elimination of post-processing stages, ultrafast or ultrashort pulse lasers have become essential production equipment across industries like automotive, medical devices, and consumer electronics. Industries have switched from using laser cut technology to extremely rapid laser technology for precise machining, enabling quick time to market. High dimensional accuracy is made possible by ultrafast lasers, and micromachining is the main factor boosting the demand for ultrafast lasers during the coming years.
Get more information on this report Download Sample Report
Need for Improved Dimensional Accuracy
Technological developments in consumer electronics, transportation, healthcare, networking and telecom, and computing brought the demand for a compact and reliable electronic device. For components like screens, such portable electronic equipment requires exact dimensional accuracy. The demand for the fabrication materials needed to create high-performance semiconductor components is anticipated to increase. The need for small equipment has grown significantly in high-speed, fully integrated applications like aerospace and some consumer electronics. These factors for creating the final products forced the OEMs to make small parts with intricate characteristics, making micromachining a key element in creating miniaturized electronic systems.
Nearly every industrial area, including communication equipment, automobiles, industrial manufacturing, and healthcare equipment, has seen an increase in the demand for small, portable electronic gadgets. The requirement for improved dimensional accuracy has been driven by these progressions in the electronic device manufacturing industry, which has put more pressure on OEMs to ensure that the devices are free of faults and flaws. Thus, it is projected that the use of laser machining equipment will expand. Furthermore, it is anticipated that the demand for ultrafast lasers would be fueled by the need to have a competitive edge in terms of device performance, particularly in niche areas with high revenue potential like consumer electronics. Due to the increasing proportion of use cases showcasing the benefits of ultrafast lasers, the industry is expanding.
Complexities During Manufacturing
While the ultrafast lasers market is expanding due to the demand for improved dimensional accuracy and government regulations encouraging ultrafast lasers, other factors, including manufacturing complexities, are expected to restrain the market's expansion. Due to the systems' complexity in terms of technology, nonlinear effects during beam propagation, and interaction process, handling these systems requires technical competence in an industrial setting. Thus, even though this technology promises several advantages, it is frequently criticized as being fragile, expensive, and slow, making it challenging to integrate into production processes.
Due to the lower level of manufacturing complexity involved compared to other applications, many alternative technologies are available and frequently used. Although ultrafast lasers can process optically transparent polymer materials, excimer lasers are more popular due to the associated cost. Other substitute technologies comprise Q-switched lasers, continuous wave (CW), and nanosecond pulsed. As a result, these obstacles prevent the market for ultrafast lasers from growing.
Advancements and Research in the Field
Previously, ultrafast lasers were delicate, labor-intensive technologies that weren't made to withstand the rigors of an industrial setting. The situation has dramatically changed due to recent breakthroughs in laser design. In many industrial processes, ultrafast lasers with pulse lengths in the femtosecond and picosecond range are crucial. Numerous cutting-edge scientific and commercial applications are now possible because of the usefulness of these lasers for high-quality, essentially hot material processing, as well as developments in laser technology, process development, beam management, and delivery.
Using tapered double-clad fiber (T-DCF) amplifiers, recent advancements now offer the possibility of high power with outstanding beam qualities in a space-effective configuration and, most astonishingly, at production costs hardly higher than conventional fibers. The focus on investments and innovations is developing due to the expanding research and development in the laser area and the correspondingly growing number of applications for the technology. Throughout the timeframe, it is anticipated that more significant usage by various sectors and on multiple materials will result from the growing research and advances in the field of ultrafast lasers.
The global ultrafast laser market is classified based on laser type, end-user, pulse duration, and region.
By laser type, the global ultrafast laser market comprises Solid-state Lasers and Fiber Lasers.
The Solid-state Lasers section is projected to advance at a CAGR of 16.3% and hold the largest market share over the forecast period. The solid-state ultrafast lasers provide a wide range of scientific and technological applications. The performance of ultrafast lasers can be significantly improved. They can even open up new applications in fields like metrology, supercontinuum generation, and the life sciences that are only possible with ultrashort pulses, according to several laboratory tests. These laser systems are widely employed in applications for ultrafast laser systems, replacing costly, power-hungry, maintenance-intensive lasers. Numerous studies have been done to make these lasers commercially available.
The Fiber Lasers section will hold the second-largest market share. Fiber lasers are versatile and powerful tools for various industrial manufacturing tasks, including cutting, welding, and additive manufacturing. The market for medical laser systems is growing due to a wide range of applications for ultrafast fiber laser technology in healthcare systems. The applications include cardiology, dermatology, cancer treatments, dentistry, and ophthalmology. The most successful applications of fiber lasers are surgery, therapy, and illness diagnosis. Fiber lasers provide a precise, continuous laser beam that allows them to produce highly accurate cuts in microscopic components.
By end-user, the global ultrafast laser market comprises Consumer Electronics, Medical, Automotive, Aerospace & Defense, and Research.
The Consumer Electronic section is projected to advance at a CAGR of 19.41% and hold the largest market share over the forecast period. The electronics manufacturing industry continues to be highly active. It is primarily driven by rising consumer electronics demand and quick-moving technology advancements, which pressure OEMs to continuously release new goods on the market. Most of today's electronics products are downsized, necessitating tighter dimensional tolerances so that the parts may fit inside ever-smaller form factors and fuel the expansion of the ultrafast laser market. A more accurate inspection of the smaller characteristics of component assemblies is necessary during the electronic manufacturing process. Thus, increasing the use of ultrafast lasers.
The Automotive section will hold the second-largest market share. Due to the growing demand for driverless vehicles, the automotive industry is experiencing a tremendous need for ultrafast laser applications. Electronic innovations are increasingly replacing traditional automotive control technology. Many well-developed technologies are disqualified by the necessity for exemplary performance in combination with strict environmental and financial criteria, which encourages the development of new ideas. As a result, demand for ultrafast lasers in various applications increases.
By pulse duration, the global ultrafast laser market comprises Picosecond and Femtosecond.
The Picosecond section is projected to advance at a CAGR of 13.9% and hold the largest market share over the forecast period. With the rising demand for producing miniature devices, the market for picosecond lasers has been expanding. The persistent pursuit of greater miniaturization and more functionality defines the electronics sector. This affects almost all stages of the manufacturing process for electronics, including two crucial micromachining operations used to produce rigid printed circuit boards (PCBs), package substrates, and thin flex circuits. Additionally, there is a growing trend toward using short-wavelength ultrashort pulse lasers. Manufacturers of high-power USP lasers, who provide the necessary high-quality products at high throughput and low cost, strongly support this development.
The Femtosecond section will hold the second-largest market share. In the domain of handheld electronics, femtosecond lasers are finding increasing use. Incredibly complex components include mobile phones, memory chips, microprocessors, and display panels, which are made of various materials, numerous layers with incredibly thin thicknesses, and few characteristics. These parts must be manufactured using cutting-edge, high-precision techniques and be economically produced in huge quantities, increasing the segment's growth. Innovations in the medical sector have also been influencing the part of femtosecond lasers.
Asia-Pacific Commands Dominion Over Others
By region, the global ultrafast lasers market is analyzed across North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.
Regional Growth Insights Request Sample Pages
Asia-Pacific will command the leading market share, expanding at a CAGR of 17.75% over the forecast period. The growth is attributable to the increased demand for femtosecond fiber lasers in the electronics and automotive sectors. Technical improvements and numerous electronics OEMs, particularly in China and Japan, further boost the market growth. With multiple market participants, including Thorlabs Inc., Wuhan Huaray Precision Laser Co., Ltd., Amplitude Laser, and others, Asia-Pacific is a recognized leader in the development of laser technology. The product offers are one strategy market players use to increase profits and acquire a competitive edge while also meeting the expanding demand for improved ultrafast laser equipment.
Due to growing government initiatives to produce defense and medical services, businesses have created ultrafast lasers for various industrial applications. It is anticipated that the market for ultrafast lasers in this region will continue to rise steadily. Ultrafast lasers are used in the manufacturing and processing of all industrial products, from machines to aeronautical equipment. The need for ultrafast lasers in Asia-Pacific is driven by several industrial tools and a growing emphasis on product accuracy and quality. Moreover, the increasing demand for industrial and consumer goods has made manufacturing one of the critical sectors of the Asian economy. Additional driving forces for the market for ultrafast lasers in the region include financing for research, funding for equipment purchases, and partnerships.
North America is projected to expand at a CAGR of 15.71%, acquiring the second-largest market share over the forecast period. One of the critical elements increasing the strength of the entire North American manufacturing sector is the region's electronics manufacturing. The most complex components are cell phones, display screens, microprocessors, and memory chips. They are made of various materials, numerous layers with incredibly thin thicknesses, and few characteristics. New and precise production techniques, like ultrafast lasers, are needed for them to be produced affordably in vast quantities.
Additionally, ultrafast laser technology, consumer electronics products, and automobile electronics have aided the market's expansion. In addition, the use of ultrafast lasers in the biological sciences and research has increased in North America. A new generation of femtosecond lasers is now being encouraged by introducing sophisticated in vivo microscopy techniques (IVM) and functional imaging in the region.