The global CF & CFRP market size is projected to grow from USD 17.5 billion in 2020 to USD 31.5 billion by 2025, at a CAGR of 12.4% during the forecast period. The market is growing due to the increase in the demand for high-performance materials, with low weight, high strength-to-weight ratio, good tensile strength, and electrical conductivity.
The main raw materials used for the production of carbon fiber composites are polymeric resins and carbon fibers. The cost of carbon fibers is directly proportional to the cost of precursor raw materials from which they are obtained. Carbon fibers are currently obtained from polyacrylonitrile (PAN), whose cost in aerospace applications is approximately USD 90 per kilogram. The development of low-cost and high-yield precursors for making aerospace grade carbon fibers would significantly reduce the cost of carbon fibers. These low-cost precursors for carbon fibers would bring down the cost of aerospace-grade carbon fibers. The reduction in the cost of carbon fibers would reduce the cost of carbon fiber CF & CFRP, thereby driving the market.
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Virgin carbon fiber accounted for the largest share in the global Carbon Fiber market in terms of value and volume.
Virgin carbon fiber accounted for dominating share in the global carbon fiber market. Virgin carbon fiber is made from precursors such as PAN and pitch. These fibers find applications in various aerospace & defense, wind energy, sporting goods, and other industries. Virgin carbon fiber offers better thermal and mechanical properties than recycled carbon fiber. They are preferred over recycled carbon fiber in high performance applications.
These materials find applications in the structural components and interior components in various end-use industries. With the outbreak of COVID-19, there is a reduced demand for carbon fiber materials in the composite industry. This has forced the carbon fiber manufacturers to operate at partial or reduced capacities.
Thermosetting resin accounted for the largest share in the global CFRP market in terms of value and volume.
Thermosetting resins hold the largest share in the global CFRP market. This dominance is attributed to its unique properties, such as excellent resistance to solvents & corrosives, fatigue strength, tailored elasticity, excellent adhesion, and finishing. Also, thermosetting resins offer easier processing than thermoplastic resins as they are in a liquid form at room temperature, allowing convenient impregnation of the reinforcing fiber. The reduced demand for new commercial and business aircraft from the aviation industry due to the COVID-19 slowdown has resulted in a decline in the need for thermosetting CFRP materials.
Europe is expected to account for the largest share in the CFRP market
Europe accounted for the largest market share in the CFRP market due to high demand from aerospace & defense and wind energy end-use industries. Moreover, it is home to many key aerospace composite manufacturers, such as SGL Carbon, Solvay, and TenCate. Increased deliveries of Airbus aircraft primarily drives the composites material demand in Europe. Apart from this, the region develops military aircraft and helicopters. The Europen region is a leader in offshore wind energy installations. The European region is one of the worst affected by the COVID-19, resulting in decreased industrial and economic activities across all major countries such as Germany, France, the UK, Italy, and France.
The major manufacturers profiled in this report include Solvay (Belgium), Toray Industries, Inc. (Japan), Mitsubishi Chemical Holdings (Japan), Hexcel Corporation (US), Teijin Limited (Japan), SGL Group (Germany), and Hyosung (South Korea). These companies are involved in adopting various inorganic and organic strategies to increase their foothold in the CF & CFRP market.
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