Aerospace Composites Market size is forecast to reach around $41 billion by 2025, after growing at a CAGR of 10.5% during 2020-2025. Composites are material made up of two or more substances with different physical and chemical properties. Surging demand of composites for making aircraft parts due to its exceptional strength and heat bearing capacity is driving the growth of aerospace composites market. Whereas, growing uses of composites in military & defense sector for manufacturing of fighter jets and missiles also boosts the growth of market. However, high fabrication and assembly costs of composite materials restraints the growth of aerospace composites market.
Aerospace Composites Market Segment Analysis – By Fiber Type
Based on the fiber, carbon fiber segment held the largest share of more than 35% in the aerospace composites market in 2019. Carbon fiber is about twice as stiff as aramid and glass fibers; thus, carbon fibers are preferred for aircrafts and space shuttles. In addition, the high strength carbon fiber also reduces the weight of aircrafts thereby increases the efficiency of engine and lower the fuel consumption. According to National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), cumulative demand for carbon fiber will grow by 10% per year between 2015 and 2024, further augmenting the growth of carbon fiber-based aerospace composites market.
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Aerospace Composites Market Segment Analysis – By Matrix Material
Based on the matrix material, metal matrix segment held the largest share of more than 30% in the aerospace composites market in 2019. Metal matrix composites have lower creep rate, high strength-to-density-ratio, and better fatigue resistance. High temperature capability and fire resistance property favors the use of metal matrix composites over polymer matrices. According to Airbus Global forecast (2019-2038) air traffic will grow at 4.3% annually and the demand for new passenger and dedicated freighter aircraft increases to 39,200 over the next 20 years. Thus, increase in demand for aircrafts boosts the use of metal matrix composites, subsequently augmenting the growth of aerospace composites market.
Aerospace Composites Market Segment Analysis – By Application
Military segment holds the largest share of more than 30% in the aerospace composites market in 2019. Increase in national or international differences coupled with rise in terrorist attacks has augmented the need for fighter jets and missiles which further boosted the growth of aerospace composites market. According to the Indian Government report, Indian Air Force is in the process of acquiring around 200 aircraft to cope with the depleting aerial inventories. Thus, surging demand of aircrafts from developing nations like China and India for the strengthening of defense sector is boosting the use of aerospace composites.
Aerospace Composites Market Segment Analysis – By Geography
North America is projected to grow with a significant CAGR of 11% in the aerospace composites market during the forecast period followed by Asia Pacific and Europe. Presence of skilled labor and well-established aircraft manufacturing companies such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and United Technologies Corp. are accelerating the demand for aerospace composites in North America. Composite offer advantages including flexibility, lightweight, durability, and resistance to corrosion. According to American Composites Manufacturers Association, composites industry annually contributes $22.2 billion to the US economy and the end-product market for composites is expected to reach $113.2 billion by 2022, subsequently aiding the growth of market.
Aerospace Composites Market Drivers
Growing demand from space and aeronautics industries
Increasing space and research activities boosted the use of aerospace composites in making fuel tanks and structural body of space launching vehicles. Composite find its applications in spaceflight vehicles, satellites and payloads, and the launch vehicles that are used to get these to space. Solid rocket motors and pressure vessels for fuel and gas storage are typically reinforced with composites due to its superior strength and ability to withstand extreme temperature. Government’s spending on National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for research & space exploration increased from $ 19,519.8 in 2018 to $ 19,892.2 in 2019. Thus, huge expenditure of government and continuous enhancement by aerospace composite manufacturers such as Toray Industries, Ltd., Payload Aerospace S.L. boosts the use of aerospace composites for manufacturing of space crafts.
Growing use of composites in commercial aircrafts
Commercial aircrafts are used for transportation of passengers and air cargo. Rise in disposable income and increase in standard of living has boosted the growth of commercial aircraft sector. Air transportations are widely preferred in today’s world, where the concept of luxury time has been truncated. Composites are used in fabrication of landing gears, turbine engines, winglets, and wall panels etc. in commercial aircrafts. Whereas, the surging uses of polymer matrices composites in commercial and high-performance aerospace applications is also driving the market growth. According to Boeing, airline industry will need more than 44,000 new commercial airplanes worth $6.8 trillion by 2038 which in turn augments the growth of aerospace composites market.
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Aerospace Composites Market Challenges
High manufacturing cost and non-biodegradability of aerospace composites
Although composite materials are widely used in aerospace industries, high manufacturing cost for their production has hampered the growth of aerospace composites market. Difficulty in repairing composites compared to metallic structures is also restraining the growth of market. In addition, carbon fibers reinforced composites are non-biodegradable and won’t decompose in the landfill. Recycling the carbon fiber composites is very difficult and requires lot of energy. Thus, long lasting composite scraps badly impact the environment and act as a restraint for the growth of market.
COVID-19 impact on the global Aerospace Composite market
COVID-19 proved to be a major challenge for the aerospace composites market. Lack of manpower has led many manufacturing companies to stop their production which further hampered the growth of market. Furthermore, outbreak of COVID-19 the pandemic resulting in a decrease in the number of aircraft deliveries along with reduced demand for aerospace composites. In addition, the travel restriction imposed by various countries has reduced air travel significantly that further hit hard to aerospace industry by lowering new aircraft deliveries. According to International Air Transport Association (IATA), global airline passenger revenues drop by US$314 billion in 2020, a 55% decline compared to 2019. Thus, decrease in airline revenues has impacted the growth of aerospace composites market.
Aerospace Composites Market Landscape
Technology launches, acquisitions and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the aerospace composites market report. Major players in the aerospace composites market are Toray Industries, Ltd., SGL Carbon SE, Solvay S.A, Owens Corning, Materion Corporation, Mitsubishi Rayon Co. Ltd., Renegade Materials Corporation, Hexcel Corporation, Teijin Ltd., Huntsman Corporation, and Boston Materials Inc., Payload Aerospace S.L among others.
In March 2019, Boston Materials Inc., raised $1.75 million in seed funding to launch its Carbon Supercomposite. Carbon Supercomposite is a carbon fiber composite that uses a proprietary fiber alignment technology for enhancing the performance of existing carbon fiber materials.
In February 2019, Kordsa acquired the US-based Axiom Materials. This acquisition has paved the way for Kordsa to be the worldwide qualified manufacturer of Oxide-Oxide ceramic matrix composites.
In October 2018, PLD Space and RUAG Space signed a long-term collaboration and supply agreement regarding lightweight carbon composite structures for small launch vehicles. This agreement is related to PLD Space’s Suborbital ARION 1 and Orbital ARION 2 launch vehicles.
Increasing environmental concerns and government restrictions on the disposal of carbon and aramid fibers has hampered the growth of aerospace composites market.
China has shown significant growth in aerospace composites market, owing its use in manufacturing of aircrafts. Boeing forecasted that China’s carriers will need 8,090 new planes through 2038 further raising the demand for aerospace composites.
Increasing investment in the defense sector from developing country also drive the market growth.
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