Based on application, the space launch vehicle segment is estimated to be the fastest-growing application segment during the forecast period.
The space launch vehicle segment is estimated to be the fastest-growing application segment in the inertial measurement unit market during the forecast period. This growth is attributed to an increase in satellite launches and increasing space research and exploration activities.
Based on technology, the MEMS segment holds the largest share in the inertial measurement unit market.
Based on technology, the MEMS segment held the largest market share in 2016. The large share can be attributed to technological advancements in MEMS that are resulting in its increased applicability in small aircraft and unmanned applications
By Grade, the space grade IMU segment is expected to lead the inertial measurement unit market in 2017
Based on grade, the space grade IMU segment is estimated to grow at the highest CAGR from 2017 to 2022. Space grade IMUs are used for space navigation applications as these applications require high accuracy, especially during the highly dynamic flight phases such as ascent, descent, entry, and landing of spacecraft. Factors such as increased investments in satellite manufacturing and associated satellite launches are contributing to the high demand for space grade IMUs.
The Asia Pacific, inertial measurement unit market, is projected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period
Asia-Pacific is estimated to be the fastest growing market for IMUs during 2017 to 2022. Factors including the increase in defense budgets of emerging countries such as China and India, increasing air passenger traffic in the region, and significant demand for smartphones and automobiles owing to increase in disposable income of the middle-class population, among others, are driving the market growth in this region
Market Dynamics : Inertial Measurement Unit Market
Driver: High volume production of smartphones
The increase in new smartphones sales and shipments across the globe is one of the key factor driving the growth of the inertial measuring unit market. In 2015, according to International Data Corporation (IDC), the shipment volume of smartphones was 1432.9 million, an increase of 10.1% compared to 1301.7 million units in 2014
The demand for smartphones is strong in the largest markets such as China, the US, Brazil, Japan, etc. The penetration of smartphones is increasing significantly in countries with a high gross population such as India, Nigeria, and Pakistan that will fuel the smartphones market during the forecast period.
Restraints: Operational complexities associated with high-end IMU
The low-accuracy characteristics of MEMS inertial sensors have restricted their performance and applicability in high-accuracy fields. However, alternative technologies such as Ring Laser Gyro (RLG) and Fiber Optics Gyro (FOG) are comparatively more reliable than MEMS, as they provide accurate results. RLGs and FOGs are complex navigation systems that are difficult to manufacture, owing to the complexities involved their operation. Furthermore, maintenance and assembling of such equipment require technically skilled workforce and a controlled environment; wherein there is no contamination from dust. These complexities act as a restraint on the growth of the inertial measurement unit market.
Opportunities: Booming Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies
Augmented reality is a technology which uses the existing environment to overlay new information on top of it. Whereas, virtual reality provides the user with a virtual environment with the help of hardware and software equipped in a computing device. It also provides a fully immersive environment where the user can interact with objects similar to those in the real world. Virtual reality can create a virtual world with computer generated and machine-driven reality. IMU is a key component used to measure speed, orientation, and specific gravity or acceleration to augment virtual reality into the real world.
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