Laser equipment industry: towards a technological shift?
The laser equipment and technology market will reach $1.1B in 2027 with a strong MicroLED industrialization push.
- The total market for laser wafer equipment will reach US$1,153 million by 2027.
- A substantial rise in the use of solid-state laser technology, mostly DPSS lasers, can be observed.
- The laser equipment ecosystem is highly diverse because the process steps of interest are very varied (e.g., laser marking vs. laser annealing vs. laser transfer). New players are emerging, mainly in the LLO and LIFT markets strongly associated with microLEDs.
The laser equipment market will grow at a solid 6.6% CAGR over the 2022-2027 period. This is driven by the need to process increasingly complex architectures and non-silicon materials for More-Than-Moore devices.
In this dynamic context, Yole Intelligence has developed a dedicated report highlighting innovative technologies and market trends that have taken place since 2017. In its new Laser Equipment and Technologies for Semiconductor Manufacturing report, the company, part of Yole Group, provides an overview of laser technology trends, summarizes the current adoption status and the various laser types available on the market with a closer focus on USP lasers that have strongly emerged over the past five years.
Gaël Giusti, Ph.D. Technology and Market Analyst specializing in Semiconductor Manufacturing at Yole Intelligence, Part of Yole Group“Laser wafer dicing is the largest market over this whole period, followed by laser annealing. The wafer dicing market is thriving as manufacturers process thinner wafers, smaller dies, and More-Than-Moore materials. The laser annealing equipment market is boosted by both logic and power SiC applications. Nonetheless, the fastest growing markets by far will be for laser lift-off and laser-induced forward transfer equipment, although these are strongly dependent on the advent of microLEDs.”
The laser equipment ecosystem is highly diverse because the various process steps are very different. Also, new players are emerging, mainly in the laser lift-off and mass-transfer markets, both strongly associated with microLEDs. This market is very promising and attracts both new and established players who want to be well-positioned before any high-volume manufacturing takes place. Overall, DISCO dominates the global laser equipment market, primarily due to its strong position in wafer dicing. Mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships have been particularly prevalent over the past five years, with at least two or three occurring each year. The usual motivation is to acquire a specific technology, often associated with a particular application and/or material. There is a growing trend for tool suppliers to develop their own laser source internally. Yet there often exist very close relationships between tool suppliers and laser source manufacturers, as these two are not mutually exclusive.
Titre du visueljune 2021
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The past ten years have witnessed tremendous technological progress from solid-state laser sources. Every year they become more reliable, compact, and powerful, including in the ultra-short pulse regime, while also becoming cheaper. This trend offers equipment manufacturers new possibilities for processing multilayer architectures and small and sensitive dies. Interestingly, the market is starting to see laser technologies being combined with non-laser techniques, such as plasma etching/dicing, or different laser configurations being used together in the same equipment. Yole Intelligence expects this trend to continue and strengthen, providing more process flexibility to device manufacturers.
MicroLEDs perfectly fit these different trends. Laser processing appears to be one of the best ways to process them via lift-off of GaN epilayers deposited on sapphire, mass transfer of the microLED dies, and even possibly bonding of the latter directly on an integrated circuit backplane. Therefore, laser processing can cover a significant part of the fabrication chain of microLEDs and hence contribute to the next disruption in the display industry.
Yole Intelligence’s semiconductor manufacturing team invites you to follow the industry and the evolution of the technology on www.yolegroup.com. Stay tuned!
- DPSS : Diode-Pumped Solid-State
- LLO : Laser Lift-Off
- LIFT : Laser Induced Forward Transfer
- CAGR : Compound Annual Growth Rate
- USP : Ultra-Short Pulse
- GaN : Gallium Nitride