Thermoplastic Prepreg Market is set to experience notable gains over the analysis period 2023-2032. The market demand is being largely influenced by the increasing product penetration in automotive and aerospace applications. Ongoing efforts by automakers and aircraft manufacturers to reduce weight and boost fuel performance is augmenting the product adoption worldwide.
Advancements in material science, technology, and processes will continue to fuel new developments in the thermoplastic prepreg industry. Numerous manufacturers are extensively working with automotive and aerospace OEMs to develop new applications using such products. For instance, Teijin recently announced expanding its carbon-fiber thermoplastic lineup, inclusive of prepregs made from thermoplastic. The firm claims that prepregs thus made can be molded at lower temperature for more cost-effective and faster production, making them highly suitable for applications across automobile sector.
Companies are also testing different reinforcement materials such as carbon fiber, aramid fiber, and fiberglass to achieve high strength and stiffness while keeping the weight on the lower side. Moreover, several advantages of thermoset prepreg materials such as superior impact resistance, high temperature resistance, and robust chemical resistance will supplement the thermoplastic prepreg market growth between 2023 and 2032. These advanced, high-performance composite materials are fully consolidated and fully impregnated one-layer sheets made of different reinforcement materials. They are available in a wide selection of materials tailored to the specific application.
Considering the type of composite reinforcement, the thermoplastic prepreg industry from the fiberglass segment is slated to expand profusely through 2032. Fiberglass-reinforced prepregs are preferred owing to the ease of processing and handling. They commonly find application in aircraft interiors, sandwich panels, and secondary aircraft structures. Increasing application in structural applications across the automotive sector will drive the product demand.
In terms of the resin type, the polyamide (PA) prepreg market will witness a notable expansion by 2032 end. PA prepregs are witnessing increased traction owing to their high thermal stability and easy processability. Additionally, they exhibit one of the highest glass transition temperatures among commercially available structural matrices. The product’s robust toughness, low toxicity, and excellent dielectric properties make them suitable for applications in aerospace and automotive sectors.
Asia Pacific thermoplastic prepreg industry is slated to witness commendable growth over the next ten years. The regional expansion is driven by the thriving automotive sector in developing Asia countries including India, China, Japan, and South Korea. According to the India Brand Equity Foundation estimates, the government of Indian anticipates the automobile industry to attract approximately 8 to 10 billion in foreign and local investments by 2023 end.
Besides, increasing passenger vehicle sales would add impetus to the regional market share through 2032. As per China Passenger Car Association, 1.82 million passenger cars were sold by July 2022, up by 20.4% y-o-y.
Toray Industries Inc., Teijin Limited, SABIC, Hexcel Corporation, Web Industries, Inc., C. Cramer & Co. (CCC), and Maru Hachi Corporation are some of the notable thermoplastic prepreg companies worldwide. These companies are relentlessly working on securing a prominent niche in the marketplace via being engaged in strategic initiatives including mergers, partnerships, product launches, and more.
To illustrate, in June 2022, Toray was commissioned to supply NASA HiCAM with thermoset and thermoplastic prepreg technologies for aerospace companies. The main aim was to enable an increase in airframe manufacturing rates in the United States.
Ongoing R&D initiatives and innovative developments using sustainable thermoplastic prepregs is slated to offer a potential boost to the overall market growth in the near future. For example, Diab and Lufthansa Technik lately announced developing greener composites for interior aerospace cabin components made of Aeroflax flax fiber-based prepreg. It has been reported that the material is used for reducing the carbon emissions from aerospace sector and offering 100% recyclable panels.