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Manufacturing Activities in End Markets Witness Slowdown during Coronavirus Outbreak

Since the coronavirus pandemic is still prevalent in many parts of the world including Europe and India, business activities in the air bearing market and its related industries such as automotive and semiconductor are taking place in a staggered manner. Stakeholders are increasing their focus in essential industries including medical, wastewater management, and defense to keep economies running during the pandemic.

Companies in the air bearing market are abiding with COVID-19 guidelines in their manufacturing facilities to ensure and protect the health and safety of all employees. As such, manufacturing activities in all end markets are witnessing a slowdown due to the pandemic. Mass inoculation of vaccines is anticipated to fuel business activities and the demand for high-precision machines that make use of air bearings.

air bearing market segmentation

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Improving Individual Designs in Bearings Help Overcome Limitations of High-loading Situations

The air bearing market is estimated to surpass the valuation of US$ 13.7 Bn by 2031. However, the transition toward air bearings is challenged with their load capacity and ability for damping. Hence, component manufacturers in the air bearing market are improving individual designs in air bearings to accommodate high-loading situations and provide more damping. They are increasing the availability for modern gas bearing systems by offering custom-made components that meet exact specifications of clients.

In-house designing and machining of air bearings are being preferred by customers in end-use industries such as diamond turning and grinding applications that use ultra-high precision equipment. Co-ordinate measuring machines are also fueling the demand for modern air bearings.

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Flexible Web Segment Fuels Demand for Air Bearings to Avoid Contamination in Products

No friction, high precision fly height, and zero wear are popular advantages of air bearings that are grabbing the attention of end users in the flexible web segment. Flexible web applications are growing prominent in packaging, electronics, and adhesives applications. A broad range of products in the flexible web segment belongs to different materials that require stringent precision and robust manufacturing technologies to avoid contamination and damage to the products. Such specifications are translating into revenue opportunities for manufacturers in the air bearing market.

Products used in the flexible web segment are manufactured from different substrates that require air bearings in machines that are capable of operating across a variety of environments right from high-temperature conditions to cleanroom settings. Pennsylvania-based New Way Air Bearings is gaining recognition for providing gas-bearing systems that overcome unique challenges in the flexible web segment.

Ultra-precision Air Bearings Enabling Reliable, Maintenance-free Operations across Industries

Innovations in air bearing spindles, rotary tables, and other complimentary equipment are contributing to the growth of the flexible web segment. ABTech Inc. - a global ultra-precision air-bearing design and manufacturing business, is enabling reliable and maintenance-free operations in the oil & gas, marine, and wastewater management applications. Industries highly dependent on sub-micron accuracies and real-time measurements such as the nanotechnology industry, photonics, optics, and life sciences are triggering the demand for air bearings used in precision material tools and high-speed machines.

Control Software Help Achieve Highest Levels of Operator Productivity

Superior position accuracy, no slip-stick phenomena, and excellent repeatability of air bearings are benefitting stakeholders in different markets such as the near-earth atmosphere, lasers, and semiconductor, among others. Companies in the air bearing market are benefitting from innovations in measurement systems such as ultra-precision air bearing-based roundness gages that are designed and manufactured in-house to deploy highest accuracy, repeatability, and reliability in operations.

In order to boost their credibility credentials and gain a competitive edge over other companies in the air bearing market, companies are providing control software and user interfaces that help to maximize ease of use for air bearings fitted in high-speed and high precision machines. These software help to simplify training for operators and allow them to achieve the highest levels of operator productivity and flexibility, thus lowering the cost of various end operations.

Air Caster Transport Facilitates Smart, Frictionless Positioning of High-tech Equipment

The air caster transport industry holds lucrative growth opportunities for stakeholders in the air bearing market. Aerofilm Systems are gaining popularity for gaining proficiency in air caster transport in order to simplify and make internal transport of heavy-duty machinery smart. Air caster transport is allowing smart transport of high-tech equipment by enabling it to float and make transport frictionless. This helps to avoid issues of floor damage, owing to high point loads of high-tech equipment. Companies in the air bearing market are capitalizing on business opportunities in air caster transport to facilitate simple, vibration-free, and precise positioning of objects in factories.

Air Bearings Enable Maintenance-free, Complete Positioning Solutions in Cleanrooms

The burgeoning growth in optical alignment, parts inspection, and torque measurement applications are grabbing the attention of stakeholders in the air bearing market. Physik Instrumente - a specialist in precision motion and positioning is boosting its production capabilities in air bearings and its various accessories to establish supply chains in parts inspection, metrology, and calibration measurement applications. Manufacturers are producing non-motorized passive rotary air bearings designed for high stiffness, precision, and accuracy in complete positioning solutions. Machines using these bearings are being preferred in cleanrooms, since they are eliminating the need for maintenance or lubrication and have an unlimited lifetime.

Specialized Machinery, Methods Help Develop Air Bearings as Per Sub-micron Accuracy

Custom configurations are gaining prominence in air bearings. As such, aerostatic bearings are anticipated to hold a higher revenue share as compared to aerodynamic bearings in the air bearing market during the assessment period. However, manufacturing challenges of air bearings such as accuracy requirement and striking the right balance between bearing and mating surface geometry needs to be addressed. In order to overcome these challenges, manufacturers are making use of specialized machinery and methods to develop robust air bearings. This helps to develop air bearings as per sub-micron accuracy and make them suitable for high repeatability applications.

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Analysts’ Viewpoint

The slow recovery of the automotive industry has compelled manufacturers to focus on essential industries such as medical, oil & gas, and wastewater management to keep economies running during the COVID-19 outbreak. The air bearing market is projected to advance at a favorable CAGR of ~6% during the forecast period. However, due to the manufacturing process of porous surface in aerostatic bearings, these bearings are not quite suitable in cleanroom environments including in semiconductor wafer fabrication, since bearings may emit very small particles during operations. Hence, manufacturers should offer non-motorized passive rotary air bearings in cleanroom settings, as they eliminate the need for maintenance or lubrication and have an unlimited lifetime. Apart from high-speed machines, air cushion transport systems are fueling the demand for air bearings that help make internal transport of heavy machinery smart and frictionless.

Air Bearing Market: Overview

  • According to Transparency Market Research’s latest research report on the global air bearing market for the historical period of 20172019 and the forecast period of 20212031, increase in installation of air bearings in a wide range of end-use industries where frictionless property, high speed and accurate positioning, etc. is required, are factors expected to boost the global air bearing market during the forecast period
  • In terms of revenue, the global air bearing market is estimated to exceed the value of US$ 13.7 Bn by 2031, expanding at a CAGR of ~6% during the forecast period

Rise in Usage of Air Bearings in Various End-use Industries to Drive Global Market

  • The usage of air bearings in optical lenses is rising rapidly. Currently, air bearings are required in the production of precision grinders, which have relatively small surfaces and require compact size of air bearings. Precise & high geometrical alignments providing ultra-precise motion are preferred by the optical industry and thus, the need for air bearings is growing in the optical industry. Production of a broad range of air bearings in a clean environment is expected to boost consumer comfort.
  • Weightless air bearings are used extensively in the aerospace industry, which helps in reducing the weight of several operating systems in aircraft. Additionally, air bearings are fuel-efficient and do not require any lubricants, and result in comparatively less wear & tear. This is leading to high demand for air bearings in the automotive industry. Increasing awareness about energy efficiency solutions in turbo generators and multi-gensets is encouraging manufacturers to focus on high efficiency product development. These factors are likely to create demand for air bearings in the near future.

Advancements in Technology to Generate Growth Opportunities for Air Bearing Manufacturers & Distributors

  • Many companies are replacing their existing elements with air bearings due to their efficiency, repeatability, and high load taking characteristics. Air bearing is preferred over mechanical bearing, as it compensates for small-scale errors for more accurate motion.
  • Growing businesses in developing regions, increasing medical facilities, rising sales of automobiles, need for vehicle wind tunnels for testing high speed against wind, and rapid expansion of the robotic segment are likely to create exceptional opportunities for the air bearing market
  • Manufacturing companies are investing in high-speed air bearing spindles for micro machining applications. Additionally, several companies are using the position sensor technology in air bearings for determining the position of brushless motors, which use air bearing machinery parts & components. These sensors used in air bearings are typically small, accurate, and cost-effective, which provides position change information.
  • Improved end user comfort, greater energy efficiency, greener solutions, and regulatory compliances are projected to drive the air bearing market during the forecast period

Air Bearing Market: Competition Landscape

  • Detailed profiles of manufacturers of air bearings have been provided in the report to evaluate their financials, key product offerings, recent developments, and strategies
  • Key players operating in the global air bearing market are
    • Celera Motion
    • SKF
    • Professional Instruments Co.
    • Air Bearings Ltd.
    • Hovair Systems Inc.
    • IBS Precision Engineering
    • Seagull Solutions Inc.
    • Mohawk Innovative Technology Inc.
    • ABTech Inc.
    • Specialty Components Inc.
    • PI Nelson Air Corp
    • OAV Air Bearings
    • Leuven Air Bearings NV

Air Bearing Market: Key Developments

  • Key providers of air bearings such as Celera Motion, SKF, Professional Instruments Co., Air Bearings Ltd., Hovair Systems Inc., IBS Precision Engineering, and Mohawk Innovative Technology Inc. are focusing on research & development and expansion of product portfolio to attract more customers. Some other key developments in the global air bearing market are highlighted below:
    • In March 2021, Celera Motion launched pre-engineered, high torque density, low cogging direct drive motors for medical and industrial applications. This air bearing is offered in a range of axial lengths and winding options. Thus, the company has developed a product which is well-suited for different motor series & continues to cater to the increased demand of customers for smooth motion, lower power dissipation, and decreased temperature rise. This increased the number of customers for the company.
    • In March 2021, SKF spent US$ 43 Mn for a new facility in Airasca, Italy. The new facility will expand business in the area. The investment is likely to create new opportunities for super-precision bearings (SuPBs) for industrial applications for the company. The company will improve performance of products through automated manufacturing and quality control processes in the new facility.
    • In 2020, Mohawk Innovative Technology Inc. partnered with Fuel Cell Energy, a fuel cell power company in the U.S. The new partnership enabled the company to develop a new product - high temperature anode recycle blowers using air bearings. This product lowered the cost incurred by the company and has increased speed using compliant foil air bearing, and eliminated the need for external water supply.
  • In the global air bearing market report, we have discussed individual strategies, followed by company profiles of providers of air bearings. The ‘Competition Landscape’ section has been included in the report to provide readers with a dashboard view and company market share analysis of key players operating in the global air bearing market.

Air Bearing Market – Scope of the Report

A new study on the global air bearing market has been published by Transparency Market Research (TMR). It presents a wealth of information on key market dynamics, including drivers, market trends, and challenges as well as the structure of the global air bearing market across the globe. TMR’s study offers valuable information about the global air bearing market to illustrate how the market would grow during the forecast period of 2021–2031.

Key indicators of market growth, which include value chain as well as supply chain analyses, and Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) are elucidated in TMR’s study in a comprehensive manner. This data can help readers interpret quantitative growth aspects of the global air bearing market during the forecast period.

An extensive analysis of business strategies of leading market players is also featured in TMR’s study on the global air bearing market. This can help readers understand principal factors to foresee growth in the global air bearing market. In this study, readers can also find specific data on the qualitative and quantitative growth avenues for the global air bearing market, which is expected to guide market players in making apt decisions in the future.

Key Questions Answered in TMR’s Air Bearing Market Study

  • What are the key factors influencing the air bearing market in each region?
  • What will be the CAGR of the global air bearing market between 2021 and 2031?
  • What is the future scope and current trends in terms of type and speed capacity of the global air bearing market?
  • What is the revenue of the global air bearing market based on the respective segments?
  • Which are the key strategies used by top players of the global air bearing market?
  • Which are the leading companies in the global air bearing market?

Research Methodology – Air Bearing Market

A unique research methodology has been utilized by TMR to conduct comprehensive research on the growth of the global air bearing market and arrive at conclusions on the future growth prospects of the market. This research methodology is a combination of primary and secondary research, which helps analysts warrant the accuracy and reliability of the drawn conclusions.

Secondary sources referred to by analysts during the production of the global air bearing market report include statistics from company annual reports, SEC filings, company websites, World Bank database, investor presentations, regulatory databases, government publications, and industry white papers. Analysts have also interviewed senior managers, product portfolio managers, CEOs, VPs, and market intelligence managers who contributed to the production of TMR’s study on the air bearing market as a primary source.

These primary and secondary sources provided exclusive information during interviews, which serves as a validation from air bearing industry leaders. Access to an extensive internal repository and external proprietary databases allows this report to address specific details and questions about the global air bearing market with accuracy. The study also uses the top-down approach to assess the numbers for each segment and the bottom-up approach to counter-validate them. This has helped in making TMR’s estimates on the future prospects of the global air bearing market more reliable and accurate.

Air Bearing Market – Segmentation

TMR’s study on the global air bearing market includes information categorized into six sections - type, speed capacity, application, end user, distribution channel, and region. Changing industry trends and other crucial market dynamics associated with these sections of the air bearing market are discussed in detail.

  • Aerostatic Bearings
  • Aerodynamic Bearings
Speed Capacity
  • Below 1000 Rpm
  • 1000-60000 Rpm
  • Above 60000 Rpm
  • Precision Material Tools
  • Coordinate Measuring Machine
  • High Speed Machines
  • Others (Digital Printers, Lithography, etc.)
End User
  • Aviation/Space
  • Medical
  • Automotive
  • Semiconductor
  • Wastewater Management
  • Others (Marine, Defense, etc.)
Distribution Channel
  • Direct Sales
  • Indirect Sales
  • North America
    • U.S.
    • Canada
    • Rest of North America
  • Europe
    • U.K.
    • Germany
    • France
    • Rest of Europe
  • Asia Pacific
    • China
    • India
    • Japan
    • Rest of Asia Pacific
  • Middle East & Africa
    • GCC Countries
    • South Africa
    • Rest of Middle East & Africa
  • South America
    • Brazil
    • Rest of South America

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Air Bearings Market

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