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Industrial networking growth led by drives

13 March 2012

According to IMS Research, an estimated 31 million new fieldbus and Ethernet nodes were installed worldwide in 2011. This number is forecast to grow by an average of 10% a year, to just over 45 million new connected nodes in 2015.

‘The World Market for Industrial Networking – 2011 Edition, report forecasts that, in EMEA and the Americas, new connected nodes will grow fastest in servo and inverter drives. Their growth rate will be 11.8% a year, resulting in 3.5 million inverter drives and 0.8 million servo drives being connected to a network in 2015.

“These new network nodes will grow so fast because of the high growth in shipments of servo and inverter drives” explains Graham Brown, market analyst and author of the study. “Drive shipments are growing quickly in all regions, although the industry sectors creating this growth differ by drive type and region. The adoption of medium-voltage drives, for example, is growing in the oil and gas industry; growth in shipments of servo drives is in the machine-tool industry.”

IMS Research is also seeing a steady increase in the percentage of drives that are network-enabled and connected. Networked drives offer an effective means of improving overall factory efficiency - the number of new networked drives is expected to increase if such legislation is introduced. However, this is not expected to happen before 2015.

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