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Photoelectric sensors are used to detect the size, shape, color, distance, absence or presence of a target entity. Photoelectric sensors integrate a receiver and a light transmitter. The sensor emits light through the transmitter to the target which is then reflected, and the light beam is received by the photoelectric receiver which activates the sensor output. Photoelectric sensors are a type of position sensor that uses light emitting diodes as the light source. One significant feature of photoelectric sensors is that it detects non-metal objects, apart from functioning over long sensing distances. The optical components present in photoelectric sensors are used for remote sensing whereas the electronic components are enclosed in a control panel in a different place.

The market is primarily driven due to the high reliability and easy installation of the retro reflective photoelectric sensors. The retro-reflective photoelectric sensors provide high performance for object detection even with misaligned, small reflectors, heavy soiling or long range. Industrial automation is also primarily driving the growth ofphotoelectric sensors market globally. The photoelectric sensors are widely used in packaging industries for detection of barcode label on mount, detection of double fed containers and detection of bottles without label among others. Moreover, the photoelectric sensors in parking facilities are used for the detection of the car positioning at multi-level car parking.

The photoelectric sensors market is facing challenges due to lack of sensing capability. The sensors when used at a short range, it becomes difficult to set the sensitivity control operating point. Moreover, the photoelectric beam is also affected by dust, smoke and fog, depending on the placement, sensitivity, frequency and brightness. Such factors negatively affected the market attractiveness of photoelectric sensors at global level. Smart photoelectric sensors are identified as important opportunity in the global photoelectric sensors market. Introduction of smart photoelectric sensors is expected to boost the growth of photoelectric sensors market in future years.

Based on technology, the market is segregated into retro-reflective, diffuse and through beam. As of 2015, in terms of revenue, photoelectric sensors using retro-reflective technology held the largest share. The retro-reflective photoelectric sensor used with a polarized filter helps in eliminating false signals which occur when the sensor faces shiny target. Furthermore, the retro-reflective sensor is easy to set up and install compared to most of the other sensors. It also consumes less time to install as it houses a single sensor wired and installed. Due to these factors, the retro-reflective photoelectric sensors are more in demand compared to diffuse and through beam photoelectric sensors.

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In terms of types, global photoelectric sensors market is segregated into proximity photoelectric sensor, fiber optic photoelectric sensor and others. As of 2015, in terms of revenue, proximity photoelectric sensor held the largest share. Wide application scope and comparatively low cost are two of the factors driving the application penetration of proximity photoelectric sensors globally.

By application, the market is segmented into parking facilities, elevators, building automation, semiconductor devices, packaging machines and others. As of 2015, in terms of revenue, parking facilities held the largest share. Rising demand for safety, process efficiency and precision in sensing has fuelled the application growth of photoelectric sensors in different industry verticals.

Based on geography, the photoelectric sensor market is segregated into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Rest of the World. The Europe accounted for the highest market revenue share in 2015. During the forecast period, it is expected to hold highest regional market share. Increasing demand of industrial automation is the primary driving factor in this region.

Major industry participants include. Rockwell Automation Inc. (U.S),`Keyence Corporation (Japan), Avago Corporation (Singapore), Panasonic Corporation (Japan), Omron Corporation (Japan), Balluff Inc. (U.S), Schneider Electric SE (France), Baumer Group (Switzerland), Sick AG (Germany), Eaton Corporation PLC (Ireland), Autonics Corporation (South Korea), IFM Electronic Ltd. (Germany) among others.