Industry Outlook in interaction with Shibu M S, Manager – Marketing, Radiant Design. Starting as an Associate - Design Engineer, he has held various positions at Radiant Design. He has years of experience in Product Design and Development and has worked with customers of various sectors across the globe.
The global electrical enclosures market is expected to reach USD 9.49 billion by 2026. How do you anticipate the growth of the electrical enclosure industry in India? What can be the factors that will drive the growth?
The Electrical & Electronics industry is one of the booming industries in India and the need for enclosures is also growing with that. The electrical enclosure market growth is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.27 percent in 2021-2023. There will be steady growth in the coming years because of the upturn in the need for electronics, IoT growth, Industrial automation, etc.
The acceptance of Industrial and home automation, booming of Indian start-up companies, rapid urbanization, improved power structures, needs for alternate energy sources aid the market growth of electrical enclosures. The two major reasons which drive the growth are,
IoT adoption in India:
The Indian internet of things (IoT) market is expected to expand at a CAGR of 13.2 perent from 2020 to 2025. The pandemic also triggered changes in enterprise behaviour that lead to IoT adoption in India. Many Start-ups have come forward with innovations to tackle the pandemic and Verticals such as banking, education, healthcare, manufacturing, retail, etc. have started moving their on-premise applications to cloud-based platforms to optimize reach and performance. IoT has gained the most popularity in home automation in recent times due to people's interest in smart homes. IoT-enabled automation, analytics, data collection is giving a major push to the industry 4.0 movement which optimizes workflow and analytics.
Schemes by Government of India:
The Indian Government initiatives like Make in India, Promotion of Manufacturing of Electronic Components and Semiconductors (SPECS), Production Linked Incentive Scheme (PLI), Electronics Manufacturing Clusters (EMC) have boosted Indian Electronics Manufacturing.
The Design phase in enclosure manufacturing is a crucial part of the entire process. It gives the blueprint to the final product. However, problems like assumption, mismanagement of dependencies, and a lot more often hamper the total output. What should be the approach of the manufacturers in the designing stage? How the problems can be overcome?
For a product to be commercially successful there are two core points, design, and functional characteristics. Design is what attracts the customers to buy a product and to design a product is not that easy as the manufacturing feasibility has a key role in it. Most players in the market suffer because of this as the most aesthetic design may lead to incalculable issues. As a design and manufacturing company, we work in two ways. Customers prefer us for the design and manufacturing or they'll have the design developed at their end or done by someone else. Most designs that we received from the client had potential DFM issues or they were expensive to manufacture. The reason is that most of them
know how to design and don't know how to design for manufacturing.
When getting started with a project we get to know the complete details of the device like application, usage, target customers, environment, etc. We send out an input sheet which will request all the details including the finish of the product which is a potential thing for the manufacturing. Our phase starts with ideation where we share different product aesthetics in the form of hand sketches. This will give an idea to the customer of what the product will look like. This will save time and can capture the customer's expectations. Once the shape is finalized then the CAD design will be done. This is where the DFM will also be considered.
Having a tool room in-house is an advantage for us at Radiant Design, where the DFM will be done in the design stage itself. Our expert designers have ideas of what can be done and what cannot be done.
With Industry 4.0, the need arises for IIoT sensor technology to be housed within enclosures robust enough to meet the challenging demands of the modern smart factory. How do you propose to meet this requirement?
Industry 4.0 is a key game changer for the Indian manufacturing sector. It breaks the gap between the virtual and the real world and also optimizes the workflow, supply chain management, and many other activities. Power management, employee safety can also be ensured through IoT things. Industrial 'things' cannot be deployed with just electronics and programs; it needs a perfect casing that can withstand the environment. A most hazardous environment like oil and gas, chemical industries, mining needs specialized cases for the electronics to sustain.
The casing design will differ with each industry. While designing enclosures for Industries having dust explosions, the casing should be sealed enough to protect the electronics. A few casings may be installed over or into the machines that will be prone to vibrations and shocks. The casing should be robust enough to handle these. The specification and standards will also differ with the environment it's going to be deployed.
Problems like, heat and moisture had always been a major challenge for enclosure manufacturers. Additionally, with recent complicated designs and waterproofing needs, this problem has escalated even more. How can this issue be dealt with in context to recent needs?
The truth is that modern technology has made these easy. The innovations in materials and new technologies have eased out the job of water and fireproofing. The modern world is focusing on creating materials that have an equivalent property to metal but are lighter than them. The challenge as a designer will be in choosing the right components and right materials for the application. As a manufacturer, the accuracy has to be maintained as even a slight difference can end in the admittance of external bodies.
We have had many customers coming to us stating their device fails not because of Waterproofing but because of the Accumulation of Moisture inside the enclosure due to pressure difference between inside and outside the enclosure. We usually suggest using Breathable Membranes to compensate for the pressure difference.
As the need for smaller and lighter items grow, manufacturers are having problems developing an enclosure that allows them to assemble everything in one place. How is this bringing in challenges for the enclosure manufacturers? How can this be overcome?
The only solution to overcome this is by getting all the solutions and sourcing under a single roof. All the post-processing services including ultrasonic welding, logo engraving/printing, assembly, etc. can be carried out at the same place to ensure safety, longevity and avoid excess cost for handling.
We offer service from end to end including engraving/printing, assembly, and packaging so that customers don't depend on multiple suppliers for multiple processes.
How do you see the future of the enclosure manufacturing segment in India?
The world was seeking more trusted sources for electronics manufacturing post the outbreak of covid-19 and India has all the essential elements in place to seize the opportunity. The increasing demand for electronic goods made India one of the preferred investment destinations for global and local players. The nation which once had only two mobile phone companies is now the second-largest mobile phone manufacturing hub. The rapid urbanization and government initiatives will take the Indian electronics and enclosure market to a new high level. India's Top players like TATA are now investing in the electronics industry which is a major positive to the market.