Chemical and petrochemical and other process industries use analyzers for process control, regulatory purposes, and other quality control procedures. However, the number of operators of process plants has reduced to half within a decade. Massive process analyzer installments in customer plants over the years have resulted in many non-operational systems, as there are no skilled operators to perform maintenance activities while running the plant. This drives the need for predictive maintenance services from manufacturers to efficiently use process analyzers with the shortage of skilled labor.
The shift toward online/continuous and portable instruments is constantly increasing. It is expected that 6–7% of the laboratory analytical instruments market revenue will shift to online instruments by 2020. Advanced and efficient laboratory instruments are being transformed into continuous and portable instruments, driven by end-user requirements. There is an increase in demand for portable instruments to perform the trend analysis for field applications to support laboratory testing. For example, portable gas chromatographs are transportable and do not require carrier gases to operate. Hence, their operating costs are lower than the other versions. Whenever a new laboratory instrument is introduced, manufacturers expect its online/portable counterpart to release in a few years driven by market requirement.
Going forward, laser-based analyzers, liquid analyzers, ultra-high-performance liquid chromatographs, and other productivity boosting analyzers will be in demand. More than 20,000 laser-based analyzers are sold each year as demand is in the peak stage. Use of laser technologies such as TDLS analyzers is dramatically increasing in customers’ premises due to their low operational cost. The market for laser-based analyzers is expected to pick up more strongly in Asia-Pacific than the other regions.
Ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography will be in high demand, as it provides output with reliable separations, high throughput, sensitivity, and resolution. Sample preparation techniques of liquid chromatography will be accorded significance by manufacturers, as they constitute a key challenge area for customers. Real-time monitoring of quality parameters by liquid analyzers is made possible through an integrated system with digital sensors connected to transmitters. This enables remote monitoring and real-time data collection using a Web browser, tablet, and smartphone. Smart technologies will be integrated with liquid analyzers such as dissolved oxygen and pH/ORP meters. In the coming years, many liquid analyzers will be integrated with digital technology to enable real-time monitoring through a centralized network connection.
In the mass spectrometry segment, the cost and size of mass spectrometers will reduce, while the capabilities of the instrument will increase. Mass spectrometers with high sensitivity and resolving power are available in the size of liquid and gas chromatographs. In the 1970s and 1980s, these instruments were of a room size. Ion mobility spectrometry is commonly used with mass spectrometers these days, as it delivers extraordinary separating results for any charge ions. Mass resolution of the mass spectrometer is continuously increasing and has exceeded m/∆m 1,000,000.
Predictive maintenance services will impact the process analytical instrumentation market to optimize operational costs. Portable and online instruments will record higher demand than laboratory instruments. Instrument performance will improve and integrate smart functional capabilities. Technology that can reduce customers’ operational expenditure will be poised for phenomenal growth.
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Frost & Sullivan, a global research and growth consulting company, also covers various trends in the analytical instrumentation market. We have published several research studies in this area, including Outlook of the Global Analytical Instrumentation Industry, 2017 and 2018; Global Laboratory Analytical Instrumentation Market; Global Process Analytical Instrumentation Market; Analysis of Global Analytical X-ray Instrumentation Market; Global Analytical Instrumentation Market in Food Testing; Global Analysis of the Oil and Gas Analytical Instrumentation Market; Global Mass Spectrometry Market, Forecast to 2022; and Global Water Analysis Instrumentation Market, Forecast to 2022.