Increasing oil and gas demand to meet the industrial and non industrial energy requirements has boosted drilling activities worldwide. Increased drilling activities for extracting from the hydrocarbon reserves can have direct implications on the laser drilling market. Abundance of oil and gas reserves all over the world can significantly augment demand of laser drilling. Several research laboratories around the world are currently working on examining the feasibility of laser drilling technologies for the oil and gas industry.
According to researchers, laser drilling can penetrate rocks with higher precision and at a faster rate. Use of high power lasers in both geothermal and the oil and gas industry can make it a useful option in high precision drilling activities. Use of lasers in oil and gas and geothermal applications can be helpful to drill or cut through rocks and stones by causing minimal environmental degradation. Laser drilling is currently used in printed circuit boards and aerospace related applications. Increasing demand for portable electronic devices that require a greater precision for the purpose of designing can boost the laser drilling market in near future.
Segmentation of the laser drilling market can be done on the basis of technology, application and geography. Laser drilling is generally categorized into percussion laser drilling and trepanning laser drilling. Percussion laser drilling applies bursts of pulses of varying spot sizes, beam characteristics and pulse durations. Percussion laser drilling is mostly suitable for ceramics, metals, polyimides, pyrex, composite substrates and polycarbonates. Trepanning laser drilling is generally used to remove a circular disc or a cylindrical core from a substrate.
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Unlike percussion laser drilling, this technique does not use bursts of pulses to create holes. This method utilizes optics to perform drilling operations. Ability to produce small sized holes, precise control and higher hole production rates are a few benefits that can create an increase in demand for laser drilling technologies. Laser drilling is presently used in automotive, aerospace, ceramic and electronic industries. Use of laser drilling activities in these industries has not only reduced the production times, but also helped in achieving highly accurate and consistent results.
Diverse applications such as high precision drilling in aerospace and automotive industry are some of the principal drivers for this market. Other drivers include the advantage of laser drilling techniques compared to conventional ones in terms of both speed and precision. High capital investments coupled with thermal effects due to heat production are the major restraints to the laser drilling market. Opportunities for laser drilling activities depend on the feasibility of using laser drilling in the oil and gas industry. If feasible, applications of laser drilling in oil and gas can be diverse and open up multiple avenues for utilization. Utilizing laser drilling technology is likely to significantly reduce the drilling time and result in minimal negative impact on the environment.
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Some of the key players in Laser drilling market include companies such as JK lasers, RESONETICS, Laserage Technology Corporation, EDAC Technologies Corporation, SCANTECH LASER PVT. LTD and Lenox Laser.