The research study covers the present scenario and growth prospects of the global vacuum heat treatment market for 2016-2020. Based on end-user platform, the market is divided into the following segments: aerospace, automotive, industrial, and commercial.
According to Anju Ajaykumar, a lead unit operations research analyst from Technavio, “The market will be driven primarily by the rising demand for vacuum heat treatment furnaces from APAC, followed by the Americas, over the next five years. Several developing countries in APAC, including India and China, will contribute to the demand for this technology.”
Technavio’s heavy industry analysts highlight the following three factors influencing the growth of the global vacuum heat treatment market:
- Growth of copper and steel industries
- Increased demand from automobile industry in Asia and Africa
- Need for hardening dissimilar materials
Growth of the copper and steel industries
Copper and steel are in high demand globally as they find extensive use in industrial and other applications. Technavio expects the global copper industry's capacity to grow at the rate of 9% and the steel industry's at 7% during the forecast period.
The demand for copper is likely to grow considerably as a result of increasing investment in the construction industry which is a major consumer of copper. Therefore, major copper-mining countries such as Chile and Peru are making substantial investments in this sector to boost production.
“India and China are the emerging economies that are expected to contribute to the growing demand. Growth of various end-user applications will necessitate the use of vacuum heat treatment technologies that help copper achieve the required specific metallurgical properties and surface modifications,” adds Anju.
Increased demand for vacuum heat treatment from the automobile industry in Asia and Africa
In the automobile industry, vehicle manufacturing involves the use of several components such as gears, piston mills, camshaft, and flywheels that are made of metals, including steel, aluminum, iron, and other alloys. For example, in any automobile, the parts used comprise about 60% iron and steel, 13% plastic, 6% aluminum, 3% glass, and 8% other materials.
“Automobile manufacturing involves the application of various types of heat treatment and surface engineering processes to enhance the performance of the automotive components. These processes are necessary to improve the strength and hardness of materials, to increase reliability, and also the lifespan of the components,” explains Anju.
Need for hardening dissimilar materials
A broad range of industries including aerospace, automotive OEMs, die-mold machining, component manufacturers, machine tools, and healthcare industries are seeking better products that have higher durability and quality. As the overall quality of products need to improve in minimal time and at minimal cost, companies in several industries are developing products that are stronger than iron.
This objective is achieved by adding alloy materials, which are non-metallic binding materials, to the original materials, and then subjecting them to vacuum heat treatment. This process helps in rearranging the crystal structure of materials by heating them in a temperature controlled environment, resulting in hardening of dissimilar materials. It also enhances the tensile strength of the materials with minimum distortion. These attributes will drive the demand for vacuum heat treatment during the forecast period.
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