Table of Contents
Silicones presents historical demand data (2005, 2010 and 2015) plus forecasts (2020 and 2025) by product, market, and application. The study also considers key market environment factors, details the industry structure, evaluates company market share and profiles industry players.
Growth in US demand for silicones will moderate from the performance of the 2010-2015 period, which saw strong gains as a result of a broad economic recovery from the 2007-2009 recession. According to Silicones, a new study from The Freedonia Group, ongoing technological developments and continued product innovation will promote gains, as such improvements will further enhance the performance of silicones in a variety of applications. However, opportunities will be limited by market maturity and the increasing tendency among users to regard silicones more as commodities than as specialty materials. Nonetheless, suppliers continue to counter this market view via the development of value-added products and by making inroads into applications that have traditionally used other materials.
Elastomers & fluids account for over 85 percent of market value
Elastomers and fluids are the two leading silicone product types, together accounting for over 85 percent of market value in 2015. Advances for elastomers going forward will be propelled by fast-growing and expanding opportunities in the medical field as well as continued strong and widespread use in the construction sector. Demand will further benefit from the increasing utilization of liquid silicone rubber in electronics, machinery, and medical markets due to its ease of processing, flexibility, and ability to form high precision parts. Silicone resins will achieve healthy gains in the rebounding construction industry, where they are primarily employed in paints and coatings. Opportunities for silicone gels will stem from their use as protective encapsulants in high growth applications such as solar cells and light emitting diodes (LEDs).
Industrial market to benefit from silicones used in motor vehicles
The industrial market is the leading outlet for silicones, due largely to the growing quantities of silicone used in motor vehicles. While growth in the motor vehicle market will decelerate substantially, silicones will continue to find opportunities as producers use them in higher quantities per vehicle to improve vehicle safety and fuel efficiency, as well as to meet consumer preferences for quieter cabins.
Medical market to see fastest gains
Among other outlets, the medical market is forecast to achieve the most rapid gains through 2020, expanding at a pace even faster than that of the 2010-2015 period. Growth will be driven by the superior heat resistance and chemical stability of silicones over competitive materials, and by the ongoing development of new products that will expand the range of medical applications for silicones. The construction market is also forecast to achieve rapid gains, outpacing those of the 2010-2015 period, as the turnaround in building construction activity continues and silicones find greater use in high-performance adhesives, sealants, and coatings.
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