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Global Advanced Materials Industry Analysis


Advanced materials exhibit characteristics superior to traditional materials such as aluminum and steel, including improved resistance to higher temperatures, and increased strength and durability. Some advanced materials are capable of changing composition, memorizing shape and responding to environmental changes. Advanced materials are used in the manufacture of microscopic robots, known as nanobots, used for engineering and medical purposes.


The spectrum of advanced materials being manufactured includes gels, ceramics, polymers and metals. They are used in everyday consumer products, such as non-stick Teflon cookware, and in specialized products. Carbon nanotubes, known as the best material for heat-conduction, are a hundred times more resistant than steel and capable of conducting electricity. In industry, advanced materials are used in a wide array of tools and materials, including lightweight aerospace applications materials, microelectronics materials, water-resistant silicon carbide whiskers used for cutting tools and materials for engineering.


Key Market Segments


Within the advanced material industry, the worldwide market for biomaterials is forecast to exceed $37.5 billion in worth in 2011, according to Industry Experts. The market is expected to grow at a yearly rate of 14%, reaching just under $84 billion by 2017. Biomaterial categories include metal biomaterials, ceramic biomaterials and polymer biomaterials.


Profit from the US electronic component and semiconductor market increased by almost 8.5% in the second fiscal quarter of 2011, compared with the same quarter in 2010, according to business solutions firm Hoovers. There are around 15,000 electronic component wholesalers throughout the US, with grouped yearly profit of $230 billion. Around 60% of profit generated by the industry concerns 50 companies, making it a concentrated industry. Leading companies in this segment include Avnet and Arrow Electronics.  


According to Renub Research, semiconductor equipment market worth will exceed $35 billion by 2013, driven by wafer processing, which is forecast to represent more than 80% of the global market by 2013. The semiconductor material and semiconductor equipment markets are closely intertwined. Annual growth for the semiconductor material market is forecast at just under 8% for the three-year period ending 2013, when it should exceed $300 billion.


Nanotechnology touches a range of industries and, notably, the medical and manufacturing fields. The worldwide carbon nanotube grades market is expected to reach $1 billion by 2014, representing impressive yearly growth of almost 60%. The global nanotechnology products market was worth close to $16 billion in 2010 according to BCC Research. The market is expected to grow at a yearly rate of over 11% in the fiver-year period ending 2015.



Global Semiconductor Sales *In US$ Bn (2010 - 2011) 



Regional Market Share


The Chinese advanced materials market has been growing at more than 22% annually, and growth in the industry is expected to remain over 20% for the years to come. China’s advanced materials market had an estimated worth of over $20 billion in 2010, combining advanced batteries, rare earth materials, photoelectronic materials and nanomaterials. The State is focusing its efforts on generic technologies, expected to boost major advanced materials self-sufficiency by as much as 70% by 2015.



Market Outlook


Anticipating growth in the advanced materials market is far from straightforward as scientific advances mean that new materials are constantly being developed. The market is dictated in part by the evolving needs of other markets, such as healthcare, defense and aerospace. Its future growth is therefore linked with that of other industries. New materials being researched include superconductors, amphiphilic materials, advanced engineering polymers and spintronics.


Biomaterials market growth will be facilitated by changes in regulations inciting new product research and greater cost effectiveness due to advanced performance of biomaterial products. Greater collaboration between suppliers and manufacturers through mergers and acquisitions will also lead to market expansion. Government spending on healthcare should equally drive growth in this market, depending on the rate of economy recovery.



Leading Industry Associations




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