Failure analysis refers to a methodical approach to understanding the malfunctioning of a component. Failure analysis equipment thus helps in determining the causes of failure. Some of the popular causes of failure are improper maintenance, manufacturing defects, assembly error, design error, improper material, poor maintenance, misuse or abuse of equipment, unpredictable operating conditions, incorrect heat treatment, inadequate quality assurance, lack of environmental protection or control, and casting discontinuities.
The global failure analysis equipment market in the semiconductor industry was worth US$1.28 billion in 2013, according to Transparency Market Research. However, owing to growth of infrastructure facilities in emerging economies, this market is expected to surge ahead at a whooping CAGR of 4.5% from 2014 to 2020.
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Dual-beam Technology Segment to Lead Global Failure Analysis Equipment Market in Semiconductor Industry
The global failure analysis equipment market in the semiconductor industry is segmented into transmission electron microscope (TEM), scanning electron microscope (SEM), dual beam (FIB/SEM) systems, focused ion beam system (FIB), and transmission electron microscope (TEM).
According to the aforementioned research report, the expanding usage of focused ion beam systems was responsible for leading the segment to the topmost position in terms of revenue in 2013. However, market watchers predict that the dual beam systems (FIB/SEM) segment will surpass all other segments to be the fastest growing one, due to the wide range of benefits it provides over single-beam FIB systems. The dual beam systems (FIB/SEM) segment is expected to grow at a stupendous CAGR of 5.8% in the forecast period. Depending on the types of users, the failure analysis equipment market in the semiconductor industry is segmented into fabless FA labs, specialty labs, fab failure analysis (FA) labs, and others.
Dr. Lynwood Swanson, founder of FEI, received a Heritage Award for his ingenious contribution to the development of ion and electron microscopy in the dual-beam technology field. His designs have helped manufacturers ease the challenges of making devices with “sub-micron” dimensions. The innovations in ion beam milling technology have helped manufacturers get a clearer picture of the defect, thus assisting them in diagnosing the root cause of the problem. This precision offered by the dual-beam technology is likely to change the shape of this segment in the forecast period.
Growth of Infrastructure to Keep Asia Pacific in the Leading Position
Geographically, the global failure analysis equipment market in the semiconductor industry is segmented into Asia Pacific, North America, Europe, and Rest of the World (RoW). The report suggests that Asia Pacific generated maximum revenue in this market and held nearly half the global market in 2013. This hierarchy is expected to continue due to monumental growth in semiconductor technology and increasing investment in education and research infrastructure in this region.
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Some of the key players in the global failure analysis equipment market in the semiconductor industry are Carl Zeiss SMT GmbH, Hitachi High-Technologies Corporation, FEI, and JEOL, Ltd.