The technical ceramics market was estimated at about USD 56 billion in 2015. The rising demand for technical ceramics can be attributed to the growing use of electronic devices in Asia Pacific, particularly in China and India. The growing popularity of technical ceramics can be attributed to its superior properties, such as low thermal expansion, durability, and high thermal resistance, facilitating its use in the electrical & electronics and automotive industries.
Various product types, including zirconia, silicon carbide, alumina nitride, and titania-based materials, are used as high-performance substitutes for traditional materials, such as plastics, glass, and metals, owing to the low costs associated. Technical ceramics are expected to replace the aforementioned traditional materials during the forecast period.
These materials exhibit superior resistance to corrosion from gases and liquids, as compared to metals such as aluminium and steel. This has resulted in increased end-use scope in fields such as aerospace, electronics, energy, power, and military, which is expected to fuel the product demand during the forecast period.
The products are of lightweight nature and have low conductivity, as a result of which, their use in the medical sector for manufacturing of implants is expected to boost the demand over the forecast period. The major players in this industry are investing heavily in R&D to improve the quality, while also reducing the cost of the product.
The electronics segment dominated the overall market with revenues of over USD 30 billion in 2015. The properties of the product, including thermal resistance, make it ideal for electronics industry applications, which include circuit carriers and ceramic substrates.
The demand from the medical segment accounted for a share of nearly 11% in 2015. The use of bio-ceramics for dental implants and orthopaedic replacements is expected to propel the overall product demand during the forecast period.
In terms of material, the market was primarily dominated by the alumina segment, which accounted for nearly 35% of the overall revenues in 2015. The alumina segment is used in various machinery and automotive components owing to its high weathering and corrosion resistance properties. The growth of the automotive and electronics segment is expected to fuel the product demand during the forecast period.
The monolithic ceramics segment was valued at over 45 billion in 2015. This product offers high thermal shock and abrasion resistance, thereby facilitating its use in insulation and lining applications.
The overall market was dominated by the ceramics matrix composites segment in 2015. This dominance is expected to continue over the forecast period on account of its rising demand aerospace, energy & power, automotive, defense, and industrial applications, owing to its greater flexibility, shock resistance, and resistance from radiations.
The growing demand from the medical segment for various applications, including orthopaedic replacements and medical devices, is expected to propel the industry growth during the forecast period. Bio-ceramics are used in hip replacement and knee replacement surgeries, in addition to lithotripters, dental products, and ultrasonic cleaners.
Technical ceramics have high stress and temperature resistance, which make them ideal for use in the energy & power industry. The products are used in systems for solar energy, photovoltaic cells, turbines, power plant engines, water treatment plants, and wind energy.
The North American region accounted for the largest share of the overall industry revenues in 2015, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of nearly 10% during the forecast period. The fast growth of the product market in this region can be attributed to the stringent laws and regulations enforced towards controlling emissions.
The European region is also expected to witness rapid growth on account of the stringent environmental norms put forth by the European Commission, thereby creating new opportunities for the product in the region.
The global industry is fragmented and highly competitive due to the presence of a large number of players worldwide. The key players are investing heavily in developing improved products at lower costs. For instance, in November 2015, Oerlikon Metco acquired Laser Cladding Services in order to enhance their ceramics business.
The presence of small regional players is a key threat to major participants of this industry. Some of these players include Saint-Gobain Ceramic Materials, Kyocera Corporation, McDanel Advanced Ceramic Technologies, Morgan Advanced Materials, and CeramTec GmbH.
Technical Ceramics Material Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)
• Alumina ceramics
• Titanate ceramics
• Zirconate ceramics
• Ferrite ceramics
• Aluminum nitride
• Silicon carbide
• Silicon nitride
Technical Ceramics Product Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)
• Monolithic ceramics
• Ceramic coatings
• Ceramic matrix composites
Technical Ceramics Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)
• Electrical equipment
• Catalyst supports
• Electronic devices
• Wear parts
• Engine parts
Technical Ceramics End-use Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)
• Electrical & electronics
Technical Ceramics Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2013 - 2024)
• North America
• Asia Pacific
• Latin America
• Saudi Arabia
Research Support Specialist, USA