Fluoropolymer is a polymer based on fluorine and carbon, consisting of a backbone made up of a strong bond between carbon and fluorine atoms. This thermoset polymer achieves excellent stability due to high electro negativity of fluorine atom. Being chemically inert, coatings formulated using fluoropolymer are widely accepted for a variety of industrial applications. Fluoropolymer coating is a combination of fluoropolymer lubricants and resins. This provides protection from corrosion, chemicals, electricity, and abrasion. Furthermore, fluoropolymer coating possesses low coefficient of friction and high mechanical strength. The presence of highly electronegative fluorine atom imparts a non-sticky feature in fluoropolymer coating. In addition, fluoropolymer coating has excellent durability, high dielectric strength, flame resistance, and is light weight.
Fluoropolymer coating can be manufactured using various types of fluoropolymer such as polyvinylidene difluoride (PVDF), polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP), ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (ETF), fluoroethylene vinyl ether (FEVE), and ethylene chlorotrifluoroethylene (ECTFE). The coating also contains binder resins, solvents, pigments, and additives along with fluoropolymer. Fluoropolymer coating can be applied to ferrous and non-ferrous substrates to provide resistance from chemical and corrosion.
Fluoropolymer coating is used in numerous end-user industries such as aerospace, automotive, building & construction, food processing, and electronics. In the aerospace industry, fluoropolymer coating is used in cabin interiors, gears, wheels, and bearings to impart resistance from fire and corrosion. It has broad usage in the automotive industry to prevent automotive parts such as ball bearings and gears from friction and corrosion. Building & construction is another potential end-user of fluoropolymer coating. It is used in paints, adhesives, and sealants to provide high durability and resistance from extreme environmental conditions. Fluoropolymer coating has wide application in several cooking appliances such as non-stick cookware, mixing blades, molds, cutting blades, and extrusion dies used in the food processing industry. It is used in electronics appliances as a protective coating to provide insulation. Moreover, fluoropolymer coating is used in oil & gas, medical, chemical processing, and heavy equipment industries.
The global market for fluoropolymer coating has experienced significant growth in the past few years, with Asia Pacific being the largest market for fluoropolymer coating, followed by Europe and North America. In 2015, China was the largest consumer of fluoropolymer coating in Asia Pacific, owing to substantial demand from end-user industries. Developing countries such as Japan, South Korea, India, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia etc. generated strong demand for fluoropolymer coating in the past few years. North America also held considerable share of the global fluoropolymer coating market in 2015. However, Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest-growing market in the next few years. Significant growth of building & construction, automotive, and electronics industries is estimated to augment the demand for fluoropolymer coating in this region during the forecast period. Latin America and Middle East & Africa are also projected to be potential markets for fluoropolymer coating in the future.
Rising construction activities in developing regions of the world is likely to propel considerable demand for fluoropolymer coating over the forecast period. Economic development coupled with increasing per capita income has resulted in elevated life style and increased consumer spending in developing countries such as China, India, and Brazil. This has led to increased demand for food processing equipment which in turn has boosted the fluoropolymer coating market. However, stringent environmental regulations are anticipated to hinder the growth of the fluoropolymer coating market during the forecast period. Increased use of fluoropolymer based products leads to the emission of toxic perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) which is a potential carcinogen. However, technical innovation leading to use of environmentally sustainable materials in fluoropolymer coating is predicted to create lucrative opportunities in the market.
Key manufacturers of fluoropolymer coating include Akzo Nobel N.V., Arkema S.A., BASF SE, Daikin Industries Ltd., E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, PPG Industries, Inc., Toefco Engineered Coating Systems, Inc., TOHO KASEI Co., Ltd., The Valspar Corporation, and Whitford Corporation.
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