The Ultrasonics Business and Markets in the U.S.

Published - Aug 2003| Analyst - Patil Balaji| Code - MFG013B
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Report Highlights

  • The U.S. ultrasonics market in 2003 stands at $3.5 billion and is projected to rise at an average annual growth rate (AAGR) of 8.5%, to reach $5.35 billion by 2008.
  • Medical ultrasonics, the largest market segment, will see the fastest growth, experiencing an AAGR of 9.8%. New companies are being formed to exploit the technology in the areas of surgical ultrasonics and the nonsurgical therapeutic segments.
  • The transducers market segment is considered very mature, although new and innovative materials and new manufacturing techniques may be expected through continuing research.
  • High-power and low-power industrial applications also are well established. Ultrasonic nondestructive testing, ultrasonic cleaning and ultrasonic welding all are major mature applications.


BCC's goal in conducting this study was to determine the current status of the ultrasonic in the United States. The study's primary goal is to give readers a clear understanding of where the various markets for ultrasonic equipment currently stand and where they are heading. Detailed market forecasts are presented and important economic trends are analyzed. The developments in ultrasound technology have been reviewed and the potential for new developments has been identified. Knowledge of both the market and technological trends that are shaping the ultrasonics market will help companies to prepare for future developments in this .


Ultrasonics is a unique technology and new applications for this technology continue to emerge. It is a fundamental phenomenon related to the properties of materials and conversion of energy from one form to another. As such, the uses of the energy are limitless but its potential will depend on the innovations that take place in the future.

Many changes are taking place in this technology and its markets. New materials and new ideas for use of ultrasonic technology continue to evolve. The ultrasonic equipment manufacturers and end users of that equipment will benefit from a comprehensive understanding of these changes. This study attempts to identify the major industry movements and trends. Its purpose is to serve as a guide for suppliers, manufacturers, and users of ultrasonic technology. Readers of this study will not only understand where the industry is now, but also where it is heading. There have been significant developments over the past decade that need to be taken into account by the market participants in order to shape their competitive strategies.

This study is one of the few reports to examine the entire range of ultrasonic applications. While other research reports may have studied individual segments of the ultrasonic market, this report gives readers the opportunity to take a unique view of the leading applications of the ultrasonic technology.


Different sectors of the ultrasonic industry will find this report beneficial in different ways. Manufacturers and suppliers of ultrasonic equipment will be able to identify those areas of the industry that are stagnant and those areas that are likely to experience strong growth. They will also be able to take advantage of new opportunities and new technologies identified in the report and alter their research, development and marketing strategies accordingly.

End users will understand how ultrasonic technology works and how the equipment is put together, since the technical fundamentals behind leading applications are discussed. The manufacturers and suppliers of ultrasonic equipment have been identified and end users can work with these companies to broaden the usefulness of the ultrasonic technology. The awareness of the technological trends will prepare end users for future applications.

Other individuals will also find this report valuable. Scientists and engineers, researchers and academia will gain an overview of ultrasonics and, potentially, may devise new ways to apply this technology. Entrepreneurs will be able to identify areas for starting new es. Venture capitalists will be able to make informed decisions about where to direct investments or fund development.


This report covers a wide range of applications for ultrasonic technology. The main market segments detailed in this report are:

  • ultrasonic transducers
  • high power industrial ultrasonics
  • low power industrial ultrasonics
  • medical ultrasonics.

Included within the high power ultrasonics segment are ultrasonic assembly (welding and joining), ultrasonic machining, sonochemistry, and other industrial uses. Low power ultrasonics encompasses nondestructive testing, flow meters and control devices, leak and emission detectors, and air sensing and control devices. Medical ultrasonics is a very competitive field with many new applications being conceived. A separate chapter is devoted to this particular application. A detailed analysis of the market size, growth prospects, and market shares is presented for each segment of the ultrasonic industry.


A careful methodology was followed to generate all the forecasts contained in this report. The methodology employed both secondary sources of information and primary interviews with a number of industry participants to arrive at market forecasts. Almost all the companies based in the United States were contacted to strengthen the validity of the gathered data.

To arrive at current market sizes, sales figures for all equipment manufacturers within a market segment were gathered and analyzed. This data was then used to estimate current market shares for all companies.

Sales forecasts for each market segment were generated by analyzing the growth of underlying industries that constitute demand for each technique. A variety of industry and government data was used to forecast growth in each end user sector through 2008. All projections in the report use current dollars. A sustained U.S. economic recovery to year 2008 is assumed, with a quick resolution of geo-political issues in early 2003.


A variety of information sources were used to compile this study. Some of the main sources include:

  • BCC surveyed more than 100 companies in the ultrasonic industry to obtain data and comments for this report. Among the companies contacted were the manufacturers of piezoelectric materials, transducers and ultrasonic equipment for different applications.

  • Product literature, technical reports, and research papers from companies, universities, research institutes, ultrasonic industry associations and government agencies.

  • Various press reports on individual companies, technologies, and trends.
  • Government publications including U.S. Industrial Outlook and other Department of Commerce studies.
  • Publicly available company data from Dun & Bradstreet, the Thomas Register, and Ward's Directory.


Balaji (Bal) V. Patil received his Bachelor of Technology degree in metallurgical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology in Mumbai, India. He came to the United States for studies at Columbia University, where he completed an M.S. degree in Mineral Engineering and a Ph.D. in Engineering Science in Chemical Metallurgy. After a brief employment period with the Cities Service Company, Dr. Patil joined Allegheny Ludlum Steel Corporation in 1976. He worked at the company's R&D Center and made significant technical contributions. Dr. Patil received five Corporate Technical Awards, has three patents and several technical publications. He also lead-authored a chapter in "The Making, Shaping and Treating of Steel Steelmaking and Refining" 11th Edition, which was published by The AISE Foundation.

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