Switchgear is a combination of multiple components that are brought together to create and set up intelligent switchgear technology. Switchgears are used for protecting the electrical system against overload, short circuit, insulation failure, and more. Switchgears are a part of power protection system that ensures maximum continuity of electricity in the system without compromising the hardware or any other connected equipment. To ensure a healthy and seamless operation, switchgear has to be of good quality and should detect any abnormalities. Switchgears can be classified on the basis of their electricity bearing capacity or simple said, voltage bearing capacity. Similarly, switchgears are available in different load bearing capacities such as low voltage, medium voltage, and high voltage. In smart grid operations where higher voltage current is a part of operation, automated or intelligent switchgears are preferred.
The global switchgear market is huge and it is growing exponentially in the developing regions due to adaptation of smart grid technology. The global switchgear market is growing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 5-6 percent and it is expected to maintain the growth rate till 2020. The market is expected to attain a maximum value of $89.3 billion by 2020 as well. Such growth is fueled by the increasing demand in the developing economies due to higher investments in infrastructural developments. APAC and Europe drive the demand in this segment and these are expected to further drive the demand in the coming years. On the other hand, North America, MEA, and LATAM are considered medium maturity markets that are expected to drive the following market segments.
How Intelligent Switchgear Technology Can Benefit Computer Systems:
Switchgears are critical components in a power protection system and they play an important role in providing uninterrupted power supply. Intelligent switchgear systems can diagnose defects and malfunctions so that they can these can prevent mishaps and similar situations. These can also predict the electricity for a designated amount of time so that the systems and authorities can further manage the power supply. Here is an outlook on the global intelligent switchgear market.
- APAC is the home of many emerging and developing economies and therefore, the region will continue to drive the demand for the intelligent switchgears in the coming years. The growth in infrastructure and power distribution sector is other prominent reasons for such high demand in the APAC. On the other hand, North America and Europe are going through a phase of renewable energy resources and production which will also drive the demand further in the respective regions.
- Talking about the emerging engagement strategies, the market involves practices such as partnering suppliers and/or service providers are equipped with the best possible technology infrastructure and the required know-how whereas major market constraints are volatility in raw material prices. Major market drivers are increasing investments in T&D infrastructure whereas the market trends include improved innovation and safety. Pricing is based on the contractual purchase and on one-time orders. The contract period is approximately lies between 24-26 weeks for fixed-price contract and 2-5 years for variable-price contract. On the other hand, impactful cost components include raw materials 15-20 percent, design and labor 15-20 percent, and switchgear components around 40 percent.
The key market suppliers include global businesses with following market share – ABB 15 percent, Siemens 10.5 percent, Schneider Electric 8 percent, General Electric 7.5 percent, Hyundai 5 percent, and other fragmented suppliers approximately 55 percent.
- Emerging economies are taking initiatives to upgrade existing substations and convert those into modern intelligent substations or better performance. In addition, price volatility can be quite an important factor as materials such as copper, aluminum, and steel will impact the switchgear costs due to being raw material intensive in nature. The disruptions in the local and global markets will also occur as local players will give tough competition to the multinational companies in terms of price setting.
- The demand for medium voltage and low voltage switchgears in increasing as safety on lower levels is also going to be a priority I the power distribution equipment industry. This is also because of the rapid infrastructural development and urbanization. In addition, holding 55 percent market share, APAC has showed high demand and emerged as a sector holding the largest demand for automated switchgears and similar electrical solutions. Emerging economies such as India, Indonesia, China, and Vietnam are going through fast industrial and infrastructural development.
Some of the market constraints include fluctuations in the prices of raw materials such as steel, copper, and crude oil may restrain the global growth, manufacturers’ and profit margin which has pushed them to shift their production facilities to maintain lower cost of manufacturing.
Automated switchgears have become a modern day requirement and majority of developed and developing countries. Similarly, lack of substantial product differentiation has caused the price to become a significant area for contracts.