Nanocrystalline cellulose is one of the most emerging renewable nanomaterial which is expected to make huge impact on various end-user industries. Nanocrystalline cellulose (NCC) or cellulose nanocrystal is extracted from wood biomass and is treated into gel, liquid and solid forms. Raw materials used in the manufacture of nanocrystalline cellulose include pulp, bacteria, wood, potato and sugar beet among others. Acid treatment is the prominent method to used to manufacture nanocrystalline cellulose. However, acetylation and esterification are an alternatives method to achieve the production Cellulose nanocrystal has diameter of approximately 3-5 nm and length of 100-600 nm. Crystallinity in nanocrystalline cellulose is up to or greater than 90%. Nanocrystalline cellulose possesses unique properties such as high aspect ratio, controlled release, good water uptake and up-hold, film formation, strong fiber networks, rheology modifier and biodegradable among others. Moreover, nanocrystalline cellulose has unique electrical optical and magnetic properties. NCC has higher reinforcement potential and has higher tensile strength than glass, aramid and Kevlar.
The market for nanocrystalline cellulose is expected to be mainly driven by end-user industries such as automotive, drilling fluids, paper processing and paints & coatings among others. In automotive industry, nanocrystalline cellulose based composites can be used in the production of accessories such as cushions, headliners and headlamps. Paper processing is another major outlet for nanocrystalline cellulose. Nanocrystalline cellulose is expected to enhance the fiber bond strength with higher reinforcement on paper materials. Moreover, nanocrystalline cellulose will add higher filler content and better optical properties. In oil & gas industry, nanocrystalline cellulose can be used as viscosifier, rheloogy modifier and thickener in drilling muds. In paints & coatings industry, nanocrystalline cellulose can be used as functional additives to alter rheological properties as well as emulsifier. It can be also used as a stabilizer and thickener in industries such as cosmetics, food and pharmaceutical among others. Due to higher tensile strength nanocrystalline, cellulose can be used in the manufacture of strong and lightweight composites, which can be used in construction, packaging and aerospace industry. In electronic industry, NCC can be used in electronic displays, panels and security papers. In spite of so many applications, threat from substitutes such as microcrystalline cellulose and cellulose ethers coupled with environmental regulations is likely to hinder the market growth over the next few years.
North America and Europe are expected to dominate the demand for nanocrystalline cellulose over the forecast period. The U.S. is leading the demand for nanocrystalline cellulose in North America. However, Canada with its forest reserves can have major impact on the nanocrystalline cellulose market in North America. Western Europe is likely to dominate the demand for NCC in Europe owing to demand from paper processing and plastic industry. Northern Europe is expected to be the major producer of NCC in Europe with Finland as the major manufacturing country. Asia Pacific is anticipated to be the major market for nanocrystalline cellulose in upcoming years. China and Japan are projected to drive the demand and production trends in Asia Pacific region. However, India and other Oceanic countries are proposed to show potential opportunities for NCC in near future. Rest of the World is expected to show stable demand for nanocrystalline cellulose. South Africa and South American countries such as Brazil and Argentina are likely to be major producers in RoW region.
Some of the key manufacturers in the nanocrystalline cellulose market are Asahi Kasei Corporation, Borregaard Chemcel, Kemira Oyj, CelluForce Inc. and Daicel Corporation among others.
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- Asia Pacific
- Middle East and Africa
- Latin America
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