Home > Polymers & Advanced Materials > Synthetic and Bio Thermosets Market
Synthetic and bio thermosets market share is set to witness remarkable growth over 2022-2028, driven by the escalating adoption of biodegradable thermosets polymers as an alternative to plastics to reduce the level of pollution. Several R&D activities have been conducted to explore the use of chemicals from clean and renewable resources to synthesize bio-based thermoset resins and meet the need for sustainable development, hence amplifying the adoption of thermoset bioplastics.
Thermosets are synthetic materials known for their capability to remain in a permanent state, as polymers within the material can cross-link during the curing process and form an irreversible and unbreakable bond. For example, epoxy is the most common synthetic resin used as a thermoset polymer in manufacturing glues.
Mounting adoption of polyurethane (PU) foams in the automotive industry, alongside the rapid expansion of the building & construction sector in developing economies, are the prominent factors fostering synthetic and bio thermosets market trends. Car companies highly prefer PU foams in manufacturing their seats, headrests, and armrests owing to their usage benefits such as energy conservation, protection, and comforts. Thermosets are also gaining widespread demand for the repair and rehabilitation of civil structures, bridge structures, piping, roofing, thermal insulation, and adhesives and sealants.
Considering the thermoset type, the unsaturated polyester resin (UPR) segment is anticipated to witness sizable growth by 2028, given the accelerating product usage as a vital ingredient in the advancement of industries such as construction. Nearly 2 million tons of the product are adopted in storage tanks, pipes, flat roofs, and other waterproofing linings and high-specification components for automotive, aerospace, construction, and marine industries.
On the regional front, the Asia Pacific synthetic and bio thermosets market is anticipated to hold a considerable share over the foreseeable future, on account of the rapid expansion of the automotive industry, coupled with improving economic conditions in emerging economies such as China. The automotive sector contributed over 9.6% of the overall retail sales of consumer goods in 2019 and accounted for nearly 10% of the total employment in the region.
The global synthetic and bio thermosets market will be bolstered by the presence of key players such as Sika AG, Freudenberg Performance Materials, AOC Resins, DSM, Lanxess, Dow Chemicals, Ashland, Huntsman, BASF, DuPont, and 3M, among others. Strategic M&A and innovative product launches are among the key efforts being employed by these companies to gain a competitive advantage and expand their footprint across the global industry.
For instance, Huntsman announced the acquisition of CVC Thermoset Specialties in June 2020, in an effort to expand its specialty advanced materials portfolio for the industrial composites, coatings, and adhesives markets. Meanwhile, in December 2020, Shin-Etsu Chemical Co., Ltd. announced an investment of over ¥3 billion for the mass development of its SLK Series of Low Dielectric Constant Thermosetting Resins, designed to meet its accelerating demand resulting from the high implementation of the next-gen 5G telecom standards.
The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has led to an unprecedented and devastating economic & social crisis across the globe. Apart from the direct business and economic impact, the outbreak has caused far-reaching behavioral and structural shifts including low discretionary expenditure, shifting preference towards online shopping, and high expenditure on health & wellbeing.
However, there has been increasing adoption of thermoset plastics in the medical industry, representing the new group of materials deployed in medical technology. These include advanced medical-grade polymers that comply with the regulatory standards, owing to their cost-effectiveness, versatility, safety, and ease of use in new solutions and applications. The significant relaxation of COVID-19 restrictions in several countries and emerging applications of thermosets in handheld medical devices such as surgical and orthopedic instruments are slated to aid in the gradual recovery of demand for synthetic and bio thermosets in the upcoming years.