Sulphone Polymers Market size is forecast to reach $1.72 Billion by 2025, after growing at a CAGR of 6.48% during 2020-2025. Demand in automotive and aerospace sectors for sulfone polymers is growing significantly. These polymers are very tough, have a great stability and meet the requirements of a “work plastic” at high temperatures. These materials are made to consume more highly in automotive use by their thermal stability, high strength, oxidation resistance and excellent flame retardation. Most sulfone polymer types in exchange can withstand elevated temperatures for a prolonged period of time and other components, such as polyphenylsulfone, are particularly durable and have a direct effect on traditional polycarbonates. These factors will positively influence the Sulphone Polymers Market over the forecast timeframe.
Product Type – Segment Analysis
Polyethersulfone (PESU) segment holds the largest share in Sulphone Polymers Market in 2019. Polyethersulfone segment is estimated to be the fastest growing over the entire forecast timeframe. In numerous applications such as electrical & telecommunications, aeronautic, automotive and medical applications, the superior properties of polyethersulfone, such as low smoke emission, light weight, high impact tolerance, dimensionally stable and chemical tolerance are useful to further increase the sulfone polymers industry. The polysulfone products are widely used in medical applications, as well as for the manufacture of membranes that are widely used in water treatment, food processing and gas separation. Due to its sustainable characteristics, it can be consumed in different end-user industries, and the demand for this product will increase over a projected timeframe.
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Application – Segment Analysis
Medical sector holds the largest share in Sulphone Polymers Market in 2019, by growing at a CAGR of 7.56% during forecast period 2020-2025. PES withstands cold sterilants, disinfectants and germicides. It offers very high resistance to gamma and electron beam radiation over the entire range of service temperature. However, when exposed to high-energy radiation, it suffers a noticeable decrease in tensile strength at yield and a significant decrease in ultimate elongation. PES parts can be repeatedly sterilized in superheated steam. After more than 100 sterilization cycle, it remains transparent and largely retain its high level of mechanical properties. PES is widely used in medical applications such as membranes for dialyzers; instruments; parts for instruments; surgical theater luminaries; sterilizing boxes; infusion equipment; secretion bottles and reusable syringes.
Geography – Segment Analysis
North America dominated the Sulfone Polymers share with more than 36.40% in 2019, followed by APAC and Europe. North America is growing owing to increasing medical devices manufacturing and automotive production in the region. United States is the fastest growing country in this region owing to high automotive and aircraft production in the region. Furthermore, due to shift in usage of high-performance plastics in various industries will augment growth of Sulphone Polymers Market in the region. For instance, in October 2016, Solvay, one of the global supplier of specialty polymers, announced that it expects to increase global production capacity for its high-performance sulfone polymers by more than 35% over the next five years through significant investments and process optimizations at facilities in the U.S. Growing investments in north American region will propel the market growth over forecast period.
Drivers – Sulphone Polymers Market
Unique Properties of the Material to Boost Growth of the Market
Sulfone polymers are rigid plastic transparent materials. It remains transparent in high temperature up to 204°C. Rigid transparent plastic materials are sulfone polymers. At high temperatures up to 204°C it remains transparent. It offers a high resistance to heat, oxidation and thermal stability to a variety of electrical and electronic products including aircraft radomes, printed circuit boards and connector blocks. Features including hydrolytic resilience and heat absorption render it suitable for medical and food use. The substance is also known for its durability, creep power and low shrinking properties. These properties are propelling adoption of sulfone polymers which is likely to fuel growth of the Sulphone Polymers Market.
The demand of high-grade, durable plastic, which can be sustained at high temperatures, is substantially increased from the end-use industries such as automotive and aero generation. Many kinds of commercial materials, for example polyphenylsulfone, have increased demand in these end-use industries as the material is highly tough and impact friendly. Such trends have a significant growth on business development.
PESU High Heat Resistance Performance for Electrical/Electronic Applications
High stiffness, strength and dimensional stability permit use of polyethersulfone in electrical/ electronic application. PESU is used in various electrical components such as coil formers; plug-and-socket connectors; injection-molded printed circuit boards, parts for power circuit breakers, parts for power contactors and relays, transparent covers for signal lamps and switchboards, lamp holders and lampshades, heat shields, sensors, chip carriers, chip trays, battery seals, TV components, hairdryer parts, oven, fan heater and projector components. In the electrical/ electronic field, Polyethersulfone and polysulfone membrane are subject to growing competition from other less expensive amorphous high temperature radel plastic due to rising cost pressure. These factors will positively influence the market over the forecast timeframe.
Membranes Made from Polyethersulfone
Polyethersulfone (PES) is a very common polymer used in commercial membrane fabrication. The strong, microporous film asymmetric membranes are created from high-temperature polyethersulfone polymer. These membranes efficiently remove particulates from solutions during general filtration. Additionally, the low protein and drug binding characteristics maximize recovery of critical drugs used in I.V. therapy, chemotherapy and open-heart surgery. Recently thin film composite membranes were successfully made using sulfonated polyethersulfone as a substrate material. These sulfonated polymers were found to match the performance of unmodified polyethersulfone (PES) polymer in RO applications. SPES is a modified PES in that there are sulfonic acid group located orthogonally to the ether on the aryl groups. These factors will positively influence the market over the forecast timeframe.
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Challenges – Sulphone Polymers Market
Very high cost and applicable for highly demanding applications
Being amorphous in nature, PES furthermore suffers from a low stress crack resistance, especially during exposure to organic solvents. As it is, very high sales price is also among the major drawbacks of PES as compared to engineering thermoplastics like polyamides, polyesters and polycarbonates. For this reason, the applications are rather limited and restricted to highly sophisticate small volume areas in the electronics, aerospace and medical industries.
Technology launches, acquisitions and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the Sulphone Polymers Market. In 2019, the market of Sulfone Polymers has been consolidated by the top ten seven players accounting for XX% of the share. Major players in the Sulphone Polymers Market are Specialty Polymers USA, LLC, Sumitomo Corporation, PolyOne Corporation, BASF SE, Sino Polymer, Jiangmen Youju New Materials Co., Ltd., SABIC, Evonik Industries AG, GEHR GmbH., Ovation Polymers, Inc., and Infinity LTL Engineered Compounds, and among other.
The development of low-weight materials mainly in the aerospace industry is rising demand, which is expected to boost demand throughout the projected timeframe. The global sulfone polymer market is projected to grow further this trend.
Factors like the high cost of maintenance and production also limit market growth. However, increased R&D investment is expected to provide lucrative growth opportunities over the forecast period for product improvements.
Key players in the industry invest extensively in research and development and its manufacturing facilities to increase its regional reach and gain a strategic edge in the sector. To order to satisfy the increasing demand for goods to the immediate future, Solvay SA is expanding its manufacturing plant in India for example. In order to increase their output ability to counter the fluctuating prices of the primary products, major players often invest in the sulfone markets.
PES filter is hydrophilic and constructed from Polyethersulfone polymer membrane. It is designed to remove particulates during general filtration, and its low protein and drug binding characteristics make it ideally suited for life science application.
The global COVID-19 pandemic resulted in a sudden halt to manufacturing operations worldwide which affected the demand for and development of plastics. Automotive & transport, household products, heavy machinery and manufacturing are the most significantly impacted end usage categories of the plastics market.
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