Silica gel is a nebulous form of silicon dioxide; and synthetically produced in the form of firm uneven granules with appearance of crystals or hard regular beads. Silica Gel is one of the popular desiccant and adsorbent used for a wide number of industrial and consumer applications. Silica has become the part of daily life and consumers can find its application in everyday life.
Silica Gel is a highly activated adsorbent, and it is furnished in a wide range of mesh sizes to suit various industrial applications. It is non-toxic, non-corrosive, odorless, chemically inert and tasteless. Silica gel is a highly porous form of silica, with an extremely large internal surface area. The silica gel does not undergo any chemical reaction during adsorption and hence, does not form any by products. Furthermore, it is non-deliquescent and would not change its size or shape even after adsorbing high moisture. Additionally, when the silica gel is water saturated, it remains dry and free-flowing.
Silica gel has applications in various industry, for instance in shipping industry as an adsorbent. The cargo travels in closed compartment by sea routes for days at stretch. Therefore, small packets of silica gel are used for protecting cargo from moistures. Furthermore, silica gel is used in food and beverage industry. Moisture content in food reduces the shelf life of food products, and high moisture content lead to growth of fungus and mold. Silica gels are desiccants and maintain the shelf life of food products. Additionally, silica gels are chemically stable and are non toxic, hence are widely used in food and beverage industry. Silica gel is also used in controlling odor. Silica gel absorbs odor and foul smell from the immediate vicinity; mainly they are used in deep freezer compartments, sleeping bags, shoes, foot lockers, automobiles and others. Other industry includes, personal care, chromatography, petrochemicals; industry catalyst support aid, films, non films color dispersion aid, inks and printing industry, and paints and coatings, in steel refinery industry and oxygen plants, it can be used to remove ethane from oxygen, desiccant in gas industry, dehydration and purification in oxygen, hydrogen and chlorine. The market of silica gel can be segmented according to its application, as its demand varies according to its applications. The market can be segmented appropriately and growth in any industry would directly boost the demand for silica gel.
In large ware house to small storage facility, silica gels are used to avoid the negative impact of moisture in the stored items. Furthermore, silica gel can be regenerated by heating; and heating process removes the moisture content of silica gel and hence can be reused.
Growth in any industry would directly lead to growth in demand of silica gel due to its number of qualities associated with it. Silica gel is the most preferred desiccant used in all industry.
Asia Pacific is growing at a faster pace due to the improving economy and rising consumers demand in countries such as, India and China. Other countries with high demand of silica gel include Japan and Australia in their various industries in Asia Pacific region. North America, and Europe accounted for maximum market share, however the market is projected to increase at normal pace due to matured market.
The key industry players include, Fuji Silysia Chemical Ltd., Kalpataru Pvt.Ltd., Garg Chemical Company, Natland International Corporation, GeeJay Chemicals Ltd., SG Desiccants and International Silica Gel Co., Ltd.
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