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Thanks to increasing demand for radars, imagers and LiDAR systems, the global automotive sensor market is expected to be worth nearly USD23bn (EUR19bn) by 2022.

 

The growth of the global market in automotive sensors is set to double in the coming years, reports L'Usine Nouvelle, according to a forecast made by consultancy firm Yole Développement, which estimates that it will increase from its current USD11bn (EUR9.2bn) to USD23bn (EUR19.3bn) by 2022.

 

Gang of five


The automotive sensor market is currently dominated by five major manufacturers: Bosch, Sensata, Denso, Infineon and NXP. The boom it has enjoyed is explained in part by growing demand from major conventional carmakers and by the investment made by a number of start-ups in driver assistance systems. The fastest-growing sensor markets are imagers, radars and LiDAR systems.

Image sensors are mainly found in luxury cars, which combine AI and interpretation systems. They make the very latest technology in assisted driving possible, in the shape of digital rear view mirrors and all-around vision. Specialists in semiconductors, IC Insights believe that up to a dozen sensors could eventually be used in a single self-driving car and that sales of them could reach USD7.7bn (EUR6.46bn) by 2022.

 

Radars

 

As for radars, they are more likely to be found in mid to high-end cars. In semi-autonomous cars they are mainly used to detect blind spots, assess safe distances and to adapt automatic driving modes.

Experts believe this type of sensor should become commonplace in newer cars and that the market in them could be worth USD6.2bn (EUR5.2bn) within two years.

 

Cheaper LiDAR systems

 

LiDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) systems are essential components in self-driving cars, as they enable the vehicle’s environment to be modelled in the form of a 3-D image. They currently retail at USD5,000 (approx. EUR4,200) each.

The LiDAR market is now estimated to be worth USD300m (EUR252m).

Taking into account the falling cost of LiDAR systems, which should drop threefold by 2022, experts estimate they should then be worth USD4.4bn (EUR3.7bn), with automotive sales accounting for USD1.4bn of that figure.

 

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