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Power market intensifies as LED market dims

Posted: 04 May 2016     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:IHS  LED  power supply  MCU 

According to the latest report from IHS Inc., while LED lighting shipments are only responsible for only 7.7% of the total lighting market last year, they are expected to climb to 27.2% in 2020. This is good news for vendors of power supplies and power semiconductors, which are both set to grow by double-digit rates in the next five years.

Growth of power drivers and power supplies

LED lighting consists of two market segments: LED lamps, used in lighting fixtures, and LED luminaires, which are complete fixed lighting fixtures built with all components required for operation. Unlike power drivers in LED lamps, power supplies in LED luminaires are typically external.

Every LED light source requires a power driver or power supply to convert incoming AC power to the proper DC voltage and regulate the current flowing through the LED during operation. LEDs lamps, particularly those designed for residential use, contain internal drivers, rather than separate, external power supplies. Shipments of power drivers and power supplies for LED lighting are predicted to grow from 1.4 billion units in 2015 to 4.5 billion units in 2020.

Power driver market in LED lamps

Figure 1: IHS predicted that the global ASP for LED lighting will fall at a CAGR of 8% from 2015-2020 while shipments of power supplies for LED lighting will grow to 4.5 billion units in 2020.

The LED market is driven by the requirements of applications and uses, which dictates the design of the driver circuit and power ratings. Medium-power drivers, commonly used for applications in in the commercial/retail market, are predicted to make up 53.7% of power driver shipments in 2020. Although low-power drivers for the residential market are projected to make up 44.9% of the shipments in 2020, the relative simplicity of the driver circuit makes it easier for lighting OEMs to keep the manufacturing process in house.

High-power drivers offer the highest average selling prices (ASPs) for merchant manufacturers, but they are forecast to account for under 2% of the market from 2015-2020.

Unlike power drivers in LED lamps, power supplies in LED luminaires are typically external. Supply to the LED luminaire power supply market is very fragmented, because luminaire manufacturers require different current and voltage profiles, depending on regional requirements. This situation makes it challenging for merchant power supply companies to offer standard products and optimise manufacturing.

The market for power semiconductors

Power semiconductor design for LED lighting varies according to the application requirements. For example, in low-power luminaires, the power semiconductor solutions are typically integrated. In high-power LED lighting with more sophisticated power supplies, the number of discrete power semiconductors is likely to increase.

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