Silicon Metal Market - Snapshot

Silicon metal is a grey metallically lustrous semi-conductive metal that is used in the manufacturing of steel, aluminum alloys, solar panels, and microchips. Silicon metal is commonly produced by smelting quartz and coke in a submerged in an energy-intensive, electric arc furnace. Further processing of the material into different product grades allows its use in various industrial applications. Silicon metal is necessary in the production of aluminum and chemical products, as it provides them with essential properties. A wide range of current technologies depend on silicon material. Silicon metal is an essential material in electronics and solar industries. Use of silicon metal in battery applications to increase energy storage capacity and battery life is rising. Silicon metal acts as a raw material for a large number of industrial and consumer products such as sealants, adhesives, lubricants, coatings, and polishes & cosmetics. 

global silicon meta market

Increasing Application of Aluminum Alloys in Automotive to Drive the Market

Silicon-based aluminum alloys are being increasing employed in automotive applications due to the need to reduce weight to decrease fuel consumption. Silicon and aluminum are alloyed together to form silumin. Depending on silicon content, the aluminum-silicon alloys are classified into different grades. In terms of volume, silicon content in silicon metal alloys varies from 3% to 50%. Addition of silicon metal to aluminum creates favorable properties such as high thermal conductivity, good castability, high corrosion resistance, and machinability. Silicon-based aluminum alloys are increasingly employed to replace heavy cast iron and steel components in the automotive industry. Increase in silicon content in aluminum silicon alloys improves wear-resistance in mild wear conditions. Silicon-based aluminum alloys have sufficient strength for structural durability, stability, and dent and crash resistance. Formability for bending, stretching, and deep drawing operations is increases.  

Moreover, growth of the automotive sector is projected to drive the silicon metal market during the forecast period. The automotive industry is a major consumers of silicon-based aluminum alloys. This, in turn, boosts the demand for silicon metal and aluminum in the automotive sector. Thus, increasing demand for automobiles and growing automotive sector are likely to augment the silicon metal market in the near future. 

High Production Cost of Silicon Metal to Restrain Market

The production cost of silicon metal depends on key variables such as cost of power, raw materials, labor, and transportation. The silicon metal producing industry requires long-term supply of stable power, as the production process consists ignition of an electric arc which is necessary for the reduction of quartz in silicon metal. The requirement of high temperature and high power makes the production process energy intensive, this significantly increases the overall production costs. Charcoal, quartzite, and wood chips are raw materials employed in the production of silicon metal and hence, silicon metal manufacturers prefer physiographic regions with significant deposits of quartz and charcoal. Thus, high production cost and market volatility are projected to hamper the silicon metal market. 

High Demand for Solar Panels to Create Opportunities in Silicon Metal Market

Demand for renewable energy is increasing in the market due to the depletion of natural resources such as crude oil, coal, and natural gas, and adverse effects of fossil resources on the environment. Solar energy is considered to be renewable source of energy due to the abundant availability of solar power. This, in turn, has increased the demand for solar panels on a large scale. These panels are manufactured using high-purity polycrystalline silicon/polysilicon, a derivative of silicon metal. Polysilicon acts as a primary building block in the manufacture of silicon-based photovoltaic panels/modules. Governments of countries across the globe have started raising awareness about the benefits and some have started providing subsidies on the implementation of the solar panels. Recent innovations in the industry have led to the introduction of fluidized bed reactor (FBR) in the manufacturing process. The application of FBR reduces energy requirements for purification but yields significant amount of by-products such as silicon tetrachloride and hydrogen. These gases are highly combustible and require expensive transportation and disposal procedures. Silicor materials, which are used to produce solar silicon, do not generate toxic materials and harmful by-products that require further treatment. Additionally, the process yields sizeable and saleable aluminum-based products used in aerospace, automotive, and building materials. Hence, recent innovations in production processes are expected to reduce capital investment by decreasing power requirements and creating monetary benefits. 

Asia Pacific Accounted Market Share of Around 42% in 2018

Based on region, the global silicon metal market has been divided into North America, Latin America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific dominated the global market in 2018, as the region is an automotive and industrial hub. Moreover, the market in Asia Pacific is anticipated to expand at a significant pace during the forecast period due to the rise in demand for automobiles, portable electronics, and solar panels in the region, especially in developing countries such as China and India. 

Few Large Players Dominate Global Silicon Metal Market

Key players operating in the global silicon metal market include The Dow Chemical Company, Elkem ASA, RUSAL, Ferroglobe, Wacker Chemie AG, RIMA Group, Simcoa Operations Pty Ltd, RW Silicium GmbH, MINASLIGAS, and Wynca Group.

Silicon Metal Market - Overview

Silicon metal is a grey, lustrous semi-conductive metals that is used in the manufacturing of aluminum alloys, steel, solar cells, and microchips. The silicon metal acts as a raw material for a large number of industrial and consumer products such as sealants, adhesives, lubricants, coatings, and polishes. Increasing demand for automobiles, portable electronics, and solar panels is expected to be a major driver of the silicon metal market during the forecast period.

This report analyzes and forecasts the silicon metal market at global and regional levels. The market has been forecast based on volume (Kilo Tons) and value (US$ Mn) from 2019 to 2027, considering 2018 as the base year. The study includes drivers and restraints of the global silicon metal market. It also covers anticipated impact of these drivers and restraints on the demand for silicon metal during the forecast period. The report also highlights opportunities for the silicon metal market at the global and regional levels.

The report includes detailed value chain analysis, which provides a comprehensive view of the global silicon metal market. Porter’s Five Forces model for the silicon metal market has also been included to help understand the competition landscape of the market. The study encompasses market attractiveness analysis, wherein application segments have been benchmarked based on their market size, growth rate, and general attractiveness.

The study provides a decisive view of the global silicon metal market by segmenting it in terms of application. In terms of application, the market has been classified into aluminum alloys, semiconductors, silicones & silanes, solar panels and others. The application segments have been analyzed based on the present and future trends. Regional segmentation includes the current and future demand for silicon metal in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa.

The report provides size (in terms of value and volume) of the global silicon metal market for the base year 2018 and the forecast between 2019 and 2027. Market volume has been defined in kilo tons, while the market value has been defined in US$ Mn. Market numbers have been estimated based on the application segment of the silicon metal market. Market size of the global, regional, and country-level market has also been provided.

The report comprises profiles of major companies operating in the global silicon metal market. Key players operating in the global silicon metal market include The Dow Chemical Company, Elkem ASA, RUSAL, Ferroglobe, Wacker Chemie AG, RIMA Group, Simcoa Operations Pty Ltd, China National Bluestar (Group) Co, Ltd., RW Silicium GmbH, MINASLIGAS, and Wynca Group. Market players have been profiled in terms of attributes such as company overview, financial overview, business strategies, regional presence, and recent developments. 

The global silicon metal market has been segmented as follows: 

Global Silicon Metal Market, by Application

  • Aluminum Alloys
  • Semiconductors
  • Silicones & Silanes
  • Solar Panels
  • Others (including Reducing Agents and  Alloying Elements) 

Global Silicon Metal Market, by Region

  • North America
    • U.S.
    • Canada
  • Europe
    • Germany
    • U.K.
    • France
    • Italy
    • Spain
    • Rest of Europe
  • Asia Pacific
    • China
    • Japan
    • ASEAN
    • Rest of Asia Pacific
  • Latin America
    • Brazil
    • Mexico
    • Rest of Latin America
  • Middle East & Africa (MEA)
    • GCC
    • South Africa
    • Rest of Middle East & Africa 

Key Takeaways 

  • Extensive analysis of the global silicon metal market trends and shares from 2018 to 2027 to identify growth opportunities and analyze market developments
  • List of key developments made by major players in the precast construction market
  • List of key factors useful for building a roadmap of upcoming opportunities for the silicon metal market at global, regional, and country levels
  • Insights into growth opportunities for various stakeholders in the value chain of the market and detailed competition landscape of key players operating in the market to help understand the market competition levels
  • Porter’s Five Forces analysis that highlights the potency of buyers and suppliers and enables stakeholders to make profit-oriented business decisions
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