Some of the key players in the global lightweight materials market include Cytec Industries, ExxonMobil, DuPont, Evonik Industries, Aleris International Inc, Bayer AG, Titanium Metals Corporation (TIMET) and Allegheny Technologies Incorporated (ATI). Value chain of the lightweight materials industry is interconnected with players in each segment. These players collaborate to develop final products. Companies such as Allegheny Technologies Incorporated and Titanium Metals Corporation operate across the value chain, from producing raw materials to manufacturing vital components for end-user industries. These companies are now focusing on the development of new products for the aerospace industry due to high demand from the sector.
The global market for lightweight materials is estimated to rise at a steady CAGR of 5.80% during the forecast period of 2014 to 2020, reaching a valuation of US$186.3 bn by the end of 2020.
Aluminum Remains Most In-Demand Product Segment
The global market for lightweight materials is segmented on the basis of product, application, and region. By product, the market is divided into aluminum, titanium, high strength steel, magnesium, polymer and composites, and others including ceramic composites, carbon fiber composites, and hybrid materials. Out of these, aluminum is one of the major lightweight material, and is expected to remain the most prominent product segment in the global lightweight materials market during the forecast period. The composites product segment, which includes metal matrix composites, glass fiber reinforced plastics, carbon fiber reinforced plastics, ceramic composites, and other hybrid materials, is expected to exhibit an increase in demand over the forecast period, owing to their functional benefits in comparison with other lightweight materials. However, composites come at a premium cost which will hamper the share of the segment to some extent. Titanium, another important lightweight materials, will witness significant demand during the forecast period, primarily from the aviation industry.
By application, the market is segmented into defense, energy, transportation, and others including medical applications. Geographically, the market is divided into the regions of North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Rest of the World. Currently, Asia Pacific serves most of the demand in the global lightweight materials market.
Construction Industry Extending Demand
The demand in the global lightweight materials market is driven by various end-use industries, such as transportation, aviation, automobile, and railways. However, transportation sector remains the most prominent demand candidate due to widespread usability and the increasing need for fuel efficiency. Lightweight materials such as titanium are now extensively used in aviation industry. The industries such as medical, energy, defense, consumer goods, construction, and electronics are now also extending their practical use for lightweight material, which is another factor that will augment the demand in the market during the forecast period. Construction industry, particularly in the region of Asia Pacific, is thriving. Lightweight construction materials have lower density than water, despite a higher strength-to-weight ratio than that of aluminum and steel. However, the only restraint over the market is that these lightweight materials come at a premium price.
According to the author of the report, “structural advantages offered by lightweight materials, along with expected price reduction of composites during the forecast period, will further escalate the demand. Consequently, the players in the market must also keep an eye on on research and development to find new composites, which can help them gain ground over their competitors.”
The information presented in this review is based on a Transparency Market Research report, titled, “Lightweight Materials Market for Defense, Energy, Transportation and Other Applications - Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2014-2020.”
Key Segments of the Global Lightweight Materials Market
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