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Global Markets and Technologies for Photonic Crystals -- Focus on the APAC Region

  • February 2013
  • 204 pages
  • BCC Research
Report ID: 1119536


Table of Contents


Photonic crystals are waiting to get their rightful due after spending almost a century in relative obscurity. A combination of technology and business factors has kept large-scale commercialization of photonic crystals in particular and photonic circuitry in general at bay.

The principal reason for the lack of enthusiasm for embracing this technology is the unwillingness and apprehension involved in exploring alternatives to well-oiled and well-established fabrication processes. Most of these conventional processes, however, are facing the ends of their lives because they have reached their physical limits. Photonic crystal-driven sensing, which promises switching at speeds much higher than that which is delivered by present-day technologies, is therefore poised to gain greater acceptance in various industries.

To be fair, the extent of risk involved in such migration without the technology having being developed to a foolproof state is cripplingly high, but photonic crystal stakeholders have no reason to lose heart, as there are multiple avenues for monetizing them through an array of components and modules.

This report, which covers the market potential for such modules and components, does not claim to include an exhaustive list. It is indeed possible for photonic crystals to be employed in other areas. These modules and components have been selected because there are demonstrated instances of successful adoption of photonic crystals in these applications.

By charting the market potential for these modules and components, this report presents the full extent of the promise of photonic crystals through 2017.


This study’s goals and objectives are:

To measure and forecast the market size for overall components and modules internalizing photonic crystals in value terms for each individual component and module, as well as in volume terms wherever possible.
To break down the overall photonic crystal market along individual components and modules, including:
Light-emitting devices or diodes (LEDs).
Solar and photovoltaic (PV) cells.
Image sensors.
Optical fibers.
Discrete and integrated optical components.
Lasers and supercontinuum sources.
To break down the individual photonic crystal component and module market along business markets, including:
Energy, utilities and lighting.
Industrial and scientific.
Defense, surveillance and aerospace.
Computing and consumer electronics.
White goods.
Office space.
To break down the individual photonic crystal component and module market along photonic crystal dimensions, including the three-dimensional market.
To break down the individual photonic crystal component and module market along specific geographic regions:
Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA).
Asia-Pacific (APAC)
To break down the individual photonic crystal components and modules market along the following countries in value and volume terms:
The Netherlands.
South Korea.
To analyze the stakeholder landscape in the photonic crystal commercialization endeavors.
To analyze the patenting activity involving photonic crystals.


BCC Research published its earlier report on photonic crystals in the middle of 2011. The reason for the quick review is the rapid changes in the prospects of photonic crystal components over 2011 and 2012. To be sure, the fundamentals of photonic crystals remain unchanged, as does the list of key components that will be monetized earlier than others. There are certain significant changes in the prospects of the components themselves that have prompted a second look. An additional prompting factor has been the relative lack of breakthrough in fabrication techniques that can prompt large-scale integration of photonic crystals with these modules and components. The ongoing economic and political crises in the European Union (EU), as well as in the Middle East and the South China Sea, have also contributed to the recalibration of the forecast. The review reassesses the strategies of key stakeholders, and records and analyzes latest developments.

A significant value addition facilitated by the review is the breakdown of individual photonic crystal components by key country markets. This breakdown provides an opportunity for analysis of the potential for photonic crystals to newer levels of refinement.

In the larger context, the principal objective of this report is to chart the progress of a technology that is acquiring increasing surety and self-confidence across multiple domains. Photonic crystals have been the classic underachievers in that they have been full of promise and sound in theory but poor on implementation.

BCC Research forecasts that photonic crystals will witness an upswing in industry interest across several domains and applications. Photonic crystals can indeed rival electrons in terms of sheer versatility. In this context, it is interesting to note the approach adopted by different stakeholders toward photonic crystals. The report will provide a quantitative roadmap that will unravel this approach.

A dilemma that one faces with a technology such as photonic crystals is to accurately chart its scope. The simplicity of its technical premise opens doors to numerous integration possibilities. This report aims to sift out the most relevant and timely integration approaches by identifying specific components and modules that are most likely to emerge as the largest adopters of photonic crystals in near future. Thus, the reader can derive an accurate estimate of the market size of not just the overall picture, but also of specific components and modules in terms of business markets, geography to regions and dimensions of the photonic crystals employed.


The report forecasts the size of the market in current U.S. dollars for overall components and modules internalizing photonic crystals in value terms for each individual component, as well as in module and volume terms wherever possible, from 2012 through 2017.

The report forecasts the market size for:

Photonic crystal-enabled components and modules such as LEDs, solar and PV cells, displays, biosensors, image sensors, optical fibers, discrete and integrated optical components, and lasers and supercontinuum sources.
Forecasts are classified on the basis of end application market, photonic crystal dimension, geographic region and individual country markets.

The Executive Summary provides a snapshot of key findings of the report.

The chapter discussing the theoretical overview of photonic crystals provides an overview of the market size of components and modules internalizing photonic crystals from 2010 through 2017. It also lays down the theoretical ground for better appreciation of the technology and commercial promise of photonic crystals across applications and domains.

The chapter on global markets for photonic crystal components and modules provides a detailed analysis of the present-day state of the art in photonic crystal applications. It also deals with individual components and modules in which photonic crystals are poised to make the most prominent marks. It discusses the market potential in terms of markets, dimensions and geographic regions. It uncovers the basic theory behind the running of these modules, and then emphasizes the advantages ushered by photonic crystals over conventional methods and material.

The chapter on regional analysis for Asia-Pacific (APAC) presents an overview of the region and the overall market metrics, followed by analyses of individual countries such as China, Japan, India, South Korea and Indonesia.

The chapter on vendor and stakeholder analysis lists and explains the major stakeholder classes engaged in photonic crystal commercialization. It also analyzes the activities of key players in this domain.

The U.S. Patent Analysis chapter highlights the patenting activity underway in the area of photonic crystals. The chapter classifies the patents awarded according to functional categories such as design innovations; energy applications of photonic crystals; fabrication and synthesis methodologies; integrated circuits and quantum dots; laser applications of photonic crystals; lighting applications of photonic crystals; photonic crystal fiber applications; sensor applications of photonic crystals and telecommunications applications of photonic crystals.


This report will be relevant to:

Photonic crystal technology experts to identify the key components and modules that hold greatest promise for their technology adoption.
Experts and those involved with the development of components and modules to assess the benefits of employment of photonic crystals in their offerings and the market potential for such adoptions.
End-application device vendors who can benefit from the superior material attributes of photonic crystals and enhance the value of their products.


Both primary and secondary research methodologies were used in this study. Industry experts were interviewed; secondary sources included industry consortia, individual company financial statements, published opinions and other published sources.


Kaustubha Parkhi has worked in a wide range of functional roles with leading telecommunications operators and service providers such as Reliance Infocomm, Ramco Systems and BPL Cellular. He has written on an array of telecommunications and electronics-related subjects based on his critical analysis of the underlying technology and its business impact. Kaustubha holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Equivalent of Bachelor of Science) in Electronics and Telecommunications, as well as an MBA in Systems.

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