Manufacturing AUTOMATION

Energy savings and sustainability to propel AC drives market growth

September 10, 2010
By Mary Del

Recovering from the deepest global downturn in recent history, ARC Advisory Group says it expects the low power AC drives market to resume steady growth through 2014. According to a new ARC Advisory Group study, this trend will be due to growing investments in the infrastructure and manufacturing industries worldwide, additional requirements to increase the energy supply to keep up with rising demand, and pressure from industry to deploy sustainability solutions that reduce costs by saving energy. 

"Emerging economies, such as those in the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India and China) countries and Eastern Europe, will again have increasing consumer demand from the growing middle class, more investments pouring into new infrastructures, and the need for producing and saving energy to cope with rising energy demands and costs in the future. This situation will bode well for low power AC drives market growth," says ARC senior analyst Himanshu Shah, the principal author of the study, Low Power AC Drives Worldwide Outlook.

Productivity and globalization accelerate growth
Manufacturers continually face challenges to raise productivity, lower product costs, reduce plant operating expenses, and increase return on investment in order to compete in the global market. Saving energy will be the key component for most organizations to be successful and profitable, since energy costs are expected to rise. Consequently, capital investments for low power AC drives are expected to grow across many industries because these solutions are designed to save energy and raise productivity of machinery by providing better and more precise speed control. 

Globalization is driving the use of advanced automation and energy-saving equipment worldwide. According to the study, this will directly result in an increased use of low power AC drives, which are widely employed across the process, discrete and infrastructure industries.
Energy volatility and scarcity, as well as sustainability, are affecting automation in a wide range of industries. Requirements for increased safety, regulatory compliances, sustainability and energy savings are substantially impacting the design and capabilities of low power AC drives, the report says.


Regional scenarios
Asia’s strong demand for energy created turmoil in oil pricing. Crude oil prices that reached nearly $150 per barrel in mid 2008 were back down to moderate levels in the early part of 2009. The world, however, got the taste of very high oil prices, which created a major awareness of the importance of new sources of energy, alternative energies and energy savings; and the importance of the use of low power AC drives. Energy scarcity is driving initiatives for energy saving and energy production, which will boost the deployment of low power AC drives, according to ARC.
While every world region will experience growth in the low power AC drives market through 2014, there are significantly different factors affecting this market growth, the study explains. A brief description regarding the economic scenarios for each major world area is covered in this report, along with a quantitative assessment of the low power AC drive market, and analysis of the market and strategies of leading suppliers that will impact this business in the future. 

For more information on this study, go to:

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