Published on : Mar 22, 2016
Pioneered by the Dutch almost a thousand years ago for their expertise in optical lens, microscopes have evolved and diversified exponentially for applications. Besides their traditional use for academic and exploratory studies, microscopes are finding way for newer areas such as nanotechnology, atomic-scale semiconductor devices that need higher penetrative mediums such as X-ray, electron, etc. Thus, the use of microscope is suitable for nanoscale range observations, which has bolstered developments in several areas of exploratory research.
Presently, industrial applications exhibit the largest demand for advanced microscopes, which has been observed mainly in microprocessor industries and integrated circuit manufacture industries. Other than the novel use of microscopes, optical microscopes are being traditionally used in medical field, schools and academic institutions introduce microscopic use to students at elementary level of learning. With increasing applications of microscopes for a host of applications, newer equipment are featured with creative designs and attractive colors to be used by young individuals.
Nevertheless, sales of microscopes are impeded as well due to several reasons. The recently ended economic slump in Europe and the one in the Middle East at a small scale are reasons for this. Premium pricing of advanced microscopes that are not affordable in developing countries and instrument related complexities of the equipment are also impeding growth of the microscopy devices market.
Optical microscopes exhibit the highest demand among the various microscopic devices. Stereo microscopes, near field scanning microscopes, phase contrast microscopes, fluorescence microscopes, inverted microscopes, and confocal scanning microscopes are the different types of optical microscopes.
Region-wise, Asia Pacific is the largest market for microscopy devices. In 2013, the region held a whopping 40.9% share in the global market. In several countries of the region, governmental support for research and development programs that are conducted for industrial growth, improvement of healthcare are reasons for the same. So much so, China stands as the second largest investor for research and development programs, as per the World Bank.
The top vendors for microscopy devices are JEOL Ltd., Hitachi High Technologies Corporation, Carl Zeiss AG, FEI Company, Nikon Corporation, Olympus Corporation, Leica Microsystems, and Danish Micro Engineering.