Machine safeguarding gains

The North American market for machine automatic safeguarding products is gaining ground on Europe, according to a recent market study by Venture Development Corp. The compounded annual growth rate from 2004–2007 for Europe is projected to be 7.4%, while the CAGR for North America is projected to be 12.


The North American market for machine automatic safeguarding products is gaining ground on Europe, according to a recent market study by Venture Development Corp. The compounded annual growth rate from 2004%%MDASSML%%2007 for Europe is projected to be 7.4%, while the CAGR for North America is projected to be 12.5% for the same time period.

According to VDC, factors contributing to these expected market growth rates include:

  • Cost savings due to efficiency gains

  • Prior adoption

  • Safety buses and networking

  • Safety standards and requirements.

    • The implementation of machine automatic safeguarding allows users to operate efficient high-speed machinery and equipment without fear of personal injury or equipment damage.

      Europe's machine safeguarding standards are more universally adopted than in other regions. Consequently, much of the initial wave of adoption has passed, and the expected growth rate is more in line with growth in European manufacturing. Because of the prior adoption, the learning curve of users and vendors in Europe is less steep than in North America, according to VDC.

      The creation of safety networks and buses that are based on existing open buses and networks allows users to control and monitor their safety devices over a distributed I/O network. This reduces cost and improves performance over hard-wired devices. More complexity and diagnostics will be used to provide safer, more functional machinery.

      New standards are being created in the European Union and North America, as well as a convergence in the requirements between these two regions.

      One factor tempering growth prospects, according to VDC, is the ongoing shifting of manufacturing operations outside Europe and North America. There is often less concern about machine safeguarding of equipment bought for use in other regions of the world.

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Before the calendar turned, 2016 already had the makings of a pivotal year for manufacturing, and for the world.

There were the big events for the year, including the United States as Partner Country at Hannover Messe in April and the 2016 International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago in September. There's also the matter of the U.S. presidential elections in November, which promise to shape policy in manufacturing for years to come.

But the year started with global economic turmoil, as a slowdown in Chinese manufacturing triggered a worldwide stock hiccup that sent values plummeting. The continued plunge in world oil prices has resulted in a slowdown in exploration and, by extension, the manufacture of exploration equipment.

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