Microcellular plastic comprises of micropores in the polymer network where the pore size is under 100 micrometer in size. This new age of plastics was imagined in Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1980s. Microcellular plastics have one of a kind properties that different them from traditional plastics. They have low remaining pressure, shorter process durations, and less material utilization. As far as appearance, microcellular plastics are incredibly difficult to recognize from ordinary plastics as the structure is in all respects firmly pressed. Microcellular plastics have improved mechanical properties when contrasted with regular plastics. These are light in weight and have a few helpful properties, for example, warm protection, particular light transmission and dissemination, sound protection, filtration, padding, vitality retention, and tissue building platforms. Key utilizations of microcellular plastics incorporate development, nourishment bundling, medicinal services, hardware, transportation, and toys.
Asphalt Additives Market: Key Highlights
The global asphalt additives market was valued at ~ US$ 3.5 Mn in 2018, and is projected to expand at a CAGR of ~ 6% from 2019 to 2027. Emerging warm mix asphalt (WMA) technology is anticipated to augment the global asphalt additives market during the forecast period.
Asia Pacific was the leading region of the global asphalt additives market in 2018. The Asia Pacific asphalt additives market is estimated to continue its dominance in the global asphalt additives market during the forecast period.
Key Drivers of the Asphalt Additives Market
The demand for asphalt in road construction is expected to be driven by increasing environmental funding, legislative pressure to improve infrastructure, and growth in non-building construction activities, particularly in the highway & street segment.
The demand for paving asphalt used in highways and streets has been rising, owing to the increase in government funding and growth in highway and street construction activities.
Shift in Focus Toward Bio-based Additives to Offer Attractive Opportunities
Bio-based additives are defined as additives made from biological sources. Increase in the need of eco-friendly additives, led by the rising trend of decreasing reliance on petroleum-based additives, has encouraged industry participants to shift toward bio-based additives.
Regulatory bodies have enacted guidelines regarding the commercialization of bio-based products. There has been a significant shift in the focus toward bio-based additives. Manufacturers are increasingly using eco-friendly products, owing to the rise in the awareness about the environment among consumers.
Availability of Alternatives for Asphalt to Hamper the Asphalt Additives Market
Bricks, pavers, cobblestone, concrete, permeable paving, gravel, and cement are some of the substitutes that are being increasingly used in place of bitumen. Concrete is a highly employed product in the construction and maintenance of roads.
The governments of several countries have been preferring the usage of concrete and cement for paving roads since the last few years. This is expected to hamper the asphalt additives market.
Asia Pacific Dominates the Asphalt Additives Market
Asia Pacific is expected to continue being a prominent market in the global asphalt additives market during the forecast period. China dominates the asphalt additives market in Asia Pacific. It is followed by India, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Indonesia in the Asia Pacific asphalt additives market.
In terms of consumption, Asia Pacific is followed by Europe and North America. Europe accounted for a moderate share of the global asphalt additives market in 2018. In terms of value and volume, the Rest of Europe accounted for significant share of the Europe asphalt additives market in 2018. The Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, and Slovakia are experiencing rapid growth in road construction activities. This is anticipated to propel the asphalt additives market in the region. The asphalt additives market in Russia & CIS is estimated to expand at a rapid pace during the forecast period.
Middle East & Africa is likely create lucrative opportunities for the global asphalt additives market. GCC constituted a prime share of the asphalt additives market in the region in 2018.
Top Three Players Accounted for Major Share in 2018
Evonik Industries, Kraton Corporation, DuPont, and The Dow Chemical Company are some of the top players in the global asphalt additives market. Global reach and focus on a wide range of end-user industries are responsible for the large share of these companies in the asphalt additives market.
Evonik Industries is a leading manufacturer of specialty chemicals. It offers an extensive range of products and solutions to different industries, such as agriculture, automotive, construction, food, pharma, and oil & gas. The company operates through three business segments: Nutrition & Care, Resource Efficiency, and Performance Materials. It markets its asphalt additive products under the brand names TEGO Addbit FS 725 A, TEGO Addbit DF, TEGO Addbit EK 50, TEGO Addbit F4 HB, and TEGO Addbit FS 725 AS 10.
DuPont focuses on expanding its product portfolio in order to meet the specific needs of its consumers. For instance, in 2015, DuPont Industrial Polymers & Packaging launched asphalt modifier grades, Elvaloy RET 5160 and 5170, to resist the effects of heavy traffic, loads, and weather. These grades can extend the durability and reliability of roads and highways, and also help in reducing road-repair costs.
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Microcellular plastics are biodegradable and have sustainable properties, but their actual commercial utilization is very low due to inferior material properties, higher material cost, and limited number of processing units. Rising demand for high performance materials in various end-user industries is expected to boost the market for microcellular plastics globally during the forecast period. Microcellular plastics are believed to be an ideal replacement for conventional plastics as they are biodegradable, but their production on a large scale has been restrained by extremely high costs. The production process of microcellular plastics is much more compatible with the environment as against conventional plastics as conventional plastics use large number of toxic chemicals during its production.
Increasing demand for plastics in food packaging and healthcare segments is likely to drive demand for microcellular plastics during the forecast period. Plastic consumption in the electronics industry has witnessed substantial growth during the past few years. This is expected to augment the market for microcellular plastics. Microcellular plastics are also used in scaffolding for construction. Scaffolding is the temporary structure created during construction to support the work crew. Hence, the rapidly growing construction market is anticipated to bolster demand for microcellular plastics during the forecast period. Transportation is projected to be another key factor driving the microcellular plastic market due to growth in the automotive industry across the globe.
North America is estimated to be the largest market for microcellular plastics, accounting for substantial share of the global demand. Growing research and development activities related to microcellular plastic production by major market players has primarily driven the market in North America. Additionally, rising demand for high-performance plastics in industries such as healthcare and transportation is anticipated to boost demand for microcellular plastics in the region. In terms of region, Europe is likely to be the second-largest market for microcellular plastics. End-user applications such as food packaging, transportation, and healthcare are expected to drive the microcellular plastic market in the region. Europe boasts of presence of major automotive OEMs. This, in turn, is estimated to drive demand for microcellular plastics in the region. The market in Asia Pacific is anticipated to witness extensive growth during the next few years due to increasing demand for microcellular plastics in applications such as construction and transportation. Furthermore, presence of growing economies such as China and India is anticipated to fuel the market due to growing industrial base in the region. Strongdemand from end-user industries in Latin America is predominantly driven by growing construction industry in the region. Hence, growth in the microcellular plastic market in Latin America is expected to be steady during the forecast period. A similar trend is anticipated in the market in the Middle East and Africa, especially in growing economies such as South Africa and countries in GCC.
Some of the major players operating in the microcellular plastics market include MicroGREEN Polymers, Inc., Horizon Plastics International Inc., Sealed Air, Lavergne Performance Compounds, and Ingenia Polymers Corp. with various medium-scale operatives operating across the market.