Large Diameter Wafers: It’s All About the Demand, Part 2

Today we’re going to talk about the demand for LEDs. A lot of people don’t realize the amount of products that take advantage of LEDs. 85 percent of the LED market is based on LEDs, so as the markets for products grow, that demand for LEDs will grow, leading to even greater demand for sapphire.

Large diameter wafers are fundamental to helping the LED manufacturing industry scale to support the consumer electronics, automotive and general lighting industries. The first stage of the LED market was driven by LED use to backlight the displays in mobile phones, tablets and GPS systems, and larger backlighting applications in laptops, desktop monitors, LCD televisions and signage. The next market for LEDs was the automotive market for use in headlights and other exterior lights, interior lighting and dashboard lighting.

The next high growth stage of the LED market is general lighting. The energy efficiency of LED lighting makes it attractive to commercial and residential applications worldwide. As government entities around the world pass legislation banning incandescent light bulbs, LEDs are becoming an attractive alternative. According to market research firm Strategies Unlimited, the global market for LED luminaires (that’s the whole LED Lighting fixture) is expected to grow from $3.8 Billion in 2010 to $8.3 billion by 2014.


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