The cooled Thermal Imaging Market accounted for over 50% of the revenue share in 2017, with the chief growth drivers being the surging demand for security, surveillance, and firefighting applications for better accuracy and image details. Indoor applications including emergency management and building security are poised to offer growth opportunities for cooled thermal imaging product suppliers. The segment is forecast to lose share in the coming years to uncooled technology due to the growing number of application industries for the latter.
Thermography helps in the detection of fever and related signs of infection. Thus, the technology has been used extensively by airports during an epidemic outbreak such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS), swine flu, and Ebola to screen passengers with elevated body temperatures. Hyperspectral imaging and remote sensing are expected to serve as the key opportunity domains for thermal imaging market expansion.
The thermal dataset designed for ADAS and self-driving vehicles features a compilation of over 10000 annotated thermal images of both the day and night scenarios. Encompassing a portfolio that is claimed to be the first of its kind in thermal imaging marketplace, the aforementioned thermal imaging dataset starter reportedly allows developers to test and evolve CNN (convolutional neural networks) with the company’s patent ADK (Automotive Development Kit). The thermal dataset is claimed to commence commercialization in July this year with an anticipation of a price dip in these sensors, in a bid to expand its reach across millions of autonomous vehicles.
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Speaking along similar lines, the automotive sector unquestionably is one of the lucrative end-use domains for thermal imaging market. The rising percentage of low light traffic crashes especially across developed nations is bound to generate a considerably higher demand for these advanced camera systems, subject to its ability to enable vision even during nighttime. Estimates suggest that a disproportionate number of road accidents occur during low light conditions. Despite the fact that there is 60% reduction in road traffic, 40% of the fatal road accidents happen during nighttime, cite sources. According to NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Administration System) in the year 2015, around 5376 pedestrians were reported to be have died from traffic crashes at nighttime. These estimations give a clear picture of the earnest requirement of integrating thermal imaging in modern vehicles.
Thermal imaging market share from automotive applications, as per reports, is slated to cross USD 900 million by 2024. The escalating revenue graph of the business space can primarily be credited to the increasing penetration of self-driving cars in automotive space. With these autonomous vehicles equipped with advanced features like high-resolution cameras, LIDAR, the domain has turned out to be a viable investment avenue for thermal imaging industry players.
Major thermal imaging market drivers in Asia Pacific countries including India, Malaysia, and South include the rapid pace of technology adoption and penetration in the region. The declining price of thermal cameras and the presence of regional vendors offering low-cost solutions are expected to favorably impact the market growth in India and China.
Major vendors in the thermal imaging market space are FLIR Systems, Leonardo DRS, Raytheon Company, and Fluke Corporation. The market is characterized by stiff price competitiveness and innovative solutions. To sustain competition, players have been focusing on vertical integration to cut down input costs and developing technologically-advanced products.