The report presents a comprehensive research of the global aerogel market by application (oil and gas; construction; automotive, marine, and aerospace; daylighting and LVHS; performance coatings) and by type (silica aerogel, polymer aerogel, and carbon aerogel). The report also determines the geographic breakdown of the market in terms of detailed analysis and impact, which includes key geographies such as North America, Europe, APAC, and ROW.
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Market driver: growing demand as light-weight and thinner substitute
Countries such as the US, South Korea, and Germany are working toward minimizing their energy consumption. In Europe, there are stringent regulations on building insulation standards. The demand for insulation materials is expected to increase due to the adoption of various energy consumption and insulation standards globally.
Traditional insulation materials such as PU foam, mineral wool, rock wool, and stone wool have certain drawbacks. For example, when subjected to new construction, the thick layers of these materials are required to meet the desired R-value, which results in the loss of valuable floor space. In old buildings, installing insulation as extra layers is even tougher and leads to changes in the aesthetic appearance of the building complex.
According to a senior analyst at Technavio for plastics, polymers, and elastomers research, “Aerogels are used as ideal replacements for traditional insulation materials to fulfill energy standards set by various regulatory bodies and to avoid structural compromises in new constructions due to their low thermal conductivity and less space occupying composition.”
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Market trend: growing use in apparels for colder provinces
In the colder regions, aerogel is gradually gaining prominence in the apparel market due to its exceptional physical properties. For example, a 3 mm layer of aerogel can protect human body at a severe temperature of - 50°C. This would enable much lighter clothing in cold regions than those available at present. Aerogel will also benefit mountaineers who usually carry heavy luggage to protect themselves from adverse conditions. Properties such as fire and water resistance, thermal resistance, and flexibility make aerogel ideal for the winter clothing application. Apart from apparels, it is also used in footwear, jackets, tents, and other outdoor gears used in extreme climate insulation from cold.
Market challenge: formation of dust during the manufacturing process
Silica aerogel blankets are manufactured by casting a silica aerogel coating onto fibrous inorganic (such as fiberglass) battings. During the process, the aerogel is rolled up, cut, and then placed into critical dryers. The rolling up of aerogel that is a solid structure creates micro-fragments held by fiber in the gel. These micro-fragments are released from fibers forming nano aerogel particles, after the supercritical drying process. These nanoparticles are termed as dust. The dust can cause difficulty in handling the product for applications.
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