Three trends impacting today’s sensor market
July 27, 2023
Sensors — tiny yet robust devices used to measure physical input from their environment—are at the heart of many of today’s technologies because they provide vital information about pressure, temperature, force, gas, liquid flow, and so much more. Sensors convert inputs they receive into reliable, accurate data used to keep equipment operating at its best.
The global market for sensors is projected to grow from $205 billion today to $508 billion by 2032, driven by advances in digitization and the increased role technology plays in our lives.1 You can find a sensor in hospital ventilators, electric vehicle batteries, agricultural irrigation systems, building HVAC systems, and many other places. What are some of the key trends in sensors today?
Over time, there has been increased demand for certain sensor types, such as pressure sensors, to be as small as possible. This is often because the equipment they are housed in needs to be smaller too: for instance, the demand for smaller-sized and portable medical equipment is growing as patient care shifts from hospital to home. Similarly, components used in newly developed electric aircraft must be smaller and lighter to help the aircraft fly longer on a single charge. Sensors play an important role in enabling the devices they are embedded in to become smaller.
Sensors with digital outputs are also growing in popularity as they consume less power than their analog predecessors. They also can have more resistance to environmental noise (Electromagnetic Interference or EMI) and enable synchronous serial communication, allowing for greater monitoring and control. While there are certainly types of equipment where analog is still best, the digital push will continue to accelerate in the coming years.
Across industries, companies are feeling the pressure to develop and adopt more sustainable solutions. This often means more sensors or different types of sensors are needed to meet demand for new and more sustainable technologies.
One example of this is the skyrocketing growth in electricity-powered heat pumps, which are more sustainable alternatives to traditional fuel-powered boilers and furnaces. Across the globe, heat pump sales increased by 11% in 2022, the second year in a row of double-digit growth according to the International Energy Agency (IEA).2 In the U.S., heat pump purchases exceeded gas furnace purchases in 2022.3 While heat pumps are only used in approximately 10% of buildings today, and are concentrated mostly in single-family homes and newly constructed buildings, increased adoption by commercial buildings, workplaces and multi-family housing units is forecasted as companies work to meet their climate pledges (and consumer expectations).4
Heat pumps are just one component of the “all electric” building of the future. A study from the Rocky Mountain Institute (RMI) analyzed 15-year carbon dioxide emissions from all-electric homes as opposed to “mixed-fuel” homes in cities across the U.S. The study found that emissions were significantly lower from all-electric homes, whether they were located in hot and dry climates like Las Vegas or mild and wet climates like Seattle.5 With growing electrification needs comes demand for more sensing technologies, from pressure and temperature sensors to current and battery safety sensors.
Experts in sensing technologies for today and tomorrow
Honeywell has decades of experience meeting original equipment manufacturer (OEM) sensing needs as they have evolved over time. Sensors like our MIP Series (Media Isolated Pressure Sensor) are small and compact, helping engineers reduce design and manufacturing costs without sacrificing accuracy. The MIP Series digital output communication protocol allows the sensor to be directly plugged into the application’s circuitry without requiring major design changes, making implementation and system-level connectivity easier. The sensor is a popular choice for use in growing technologies like electric heat pumps and is highly versatile and configurable. It can address multiple output types and communication protocols, whether analog (voltage or current output) or digital (I2C or SPI).
To learn more about our MIP Series sensors or any of our other advanced sensing technologies, contact us today or visit our website.
2 and 3 - www.iea.org/commentaries/global-heat-pump-sales-continue-double-digit-growth
4 - According to Honeywell’s 2023 Building Occupant Survey, nearly three-fourths of respondents believe their employers should be taking active steps to reduce the carbon footprint of their workplaces.