Realising the potential of polycarbonate resins
A latest study indicates that ~ 5,006 KT of polycarbonate resins were sold in 2018, and it is anticipated that the sales will rise by ~4% in 2019. The global polycarbonate resins market is highly likely to witness steady growth in the foreseeable years, which will primarily be driven by the radical increase in its applications in various industry verticals.
Rapidly expanding applications in building & construction industry, which led to ~30% of total sales of polycarbonate resins in 2018, will continue to create lucrative growth avenues for stakeholders through 2029, says the report.
Polycarbonate resin future gains
Polycarbonate resins’ applications are intensifying in a multitude of industries, ranging from electrical & electronics, and building & construction, to automotive. As per the study, bulk adoption of polycarbonate resins has been witnessed in the development of canopies, facades, security windows, shelters and skylights, tubular day lighting devices, and sloped gazing, in recent years.
Wires and cables, lighting--CFL, LED, LED panels, battery housings, telephone components, radios, CD-players, and meter covers are also leveraging polycarbonate resins, as the demand for high-functionality offerings continues to spike. Polycarbonate resins also possess excellent heat resistance and insulation properties. Moreover, its flame retarding attributes are increasingly multiplying its application areas in electrical components and hardware.
Though applications in medical industry are currently at a nascent stage, analysis indicates that polycarbonate resins are likely to discover highly lucrative application opportunities in the medical industry, with extensive usage expected in wearable medical devices. Polycarbonate resins’ exceptional properties make it a safe and durable choice of material for housing medical components.
The study indicates that the industry’s efforts on the development of advanced polycarbonate resin grades for the medical device and healthcare OEMs will gather pace, as a number of manufacturers shift their focus on squeezing margins out of untapped end-use areas. For instance, Covestro has developed polycarbonate resin medical grade for thermal wellness wearable, a bracelet type wearable device manufactured by Embr Labs.
According to the study, gains will continue to remain concentrated in the automotive industry, as the blooming trend of lightweight components is pushing the adoption of polycarbonate resins in auto manufacturing. With the industry’s move towards the fuel-efficient future, the adoption of polycarbonate resins in the manufacturing of lightweight automotive components will be on the constant rise.
Applications in automotive industry contributed to sales of ~734 KT of polycarbonate resins in 2018, which is highly likely to grow further for potential use in the manufacturing of hybrid components. The ongoing trend of hybrid speedometer will further push the development and demand for customised polycarbonate resin material. Covestro, for instance, has developed Makrofol LM Polycarbonate Resin film with a 3D surface, which offers design freedom and gives the liberty to carry out functional integration of digital and analog elements.
Polycarbonate resins opening doors to new applications
The study opines that several manufacturers have delved into technologically advanced manufacturing approaches to keep their offerings at par with the need of the cutting-edge end use products. Smart grid electric system, which has polycarbonate resins as a building block, is emerging as a mine of opportunities for manufacturers, as the demand for these systems is notably rising since the recent past. Innovation of novel systems that offer continuous monitoring and communication using smart meters is gaining traction in the electrical industry.
3D-printing, on the other hand, is a proliferating technology, and manufacturers are looking to extend the existing applications of polycarbonate resins banking on the 3D printing technology. Polycarbonate’s light weight and translucency, which are superior to other Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) 3D printing materials have enabled manufacturers to leverage this additive manufacturing technology to squeeze additional gains.
While the production and adoption of polycarbonate resins continue to pick pace at a global level, East Asia remains the promising investment pocket for stakeholders. East Asia accounted for more than half of the overall sales of polycarbonate resins, with China emerging as a gain generator for market players. For instance, Covestro has announced its plan to expand polycarbonate resin production capacity to 600 KT by 2020 in Caojing, China plant.
Moreover, several market players in East Asia are also expanding polycarbonate resins production capacity to secure maximum possible gains out of the potential rise in the demand for this highly flexibility material from various industries.
The study presents the long-term outlook of the polycarbonate resins market for 2019 to 2029. The polycarbonate resins market is envisaged to register a volume CAGR of ~4% through 2029.