Asahi Chemical to shut benzene plant in Japan for maintenance

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Asahi Chemical Corp. is in plans to shut a benzene plant for a maintenance turnaround, according to Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in Japan informed that the plant is expected to be taken off-stream in February 2016 and scheduled to remain off-stream until March 2016. The exact date and duration of the shutdown could not be ascertained.

Located at Mizushima, Japan, the plant has a production capacity of 150,000 mt/year.

As MRC wrote before, Asahi Kasei’s (Tokyo, Japan) Fibers division will expand production capacity for polypropylene spunbond nonwovens in Thailand at its subsidiary Asahi Kasei Spunbond (Thailand) Co. AKST will add a new production line of 20,000 metric tons per year capacity which, combined with its existing production line, will double its capacity for spunbond nonwovens to 40,000 m.t/yr. The investment for the capacity expansion is approximately USD5 billion.

Asahi Chemical Co., Ltd. manufactures fine chemicals, dyestuffs, and silicone products. It offers pharmaceutical/agricultural intermediates, information/electronics materials, plastic/resin additives, photograph/optical chemicals, sulfur, surfactants, agrochemicals, and plastics; intermediates for dyestuffs and pigments; and specialty chemicals for pharmaceuticals.

Strong demand from packaging industry fuelling demand for hot melt adhesives

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The hot melt adhesives market is expected to be valued at USD5.4 bln in 2015 and expand at a CAGR of 5.2% from 2015 to 2025, accounting for USD 8.9 bln by 2025, reported Plastemart with reference to Future Market Insights (FMI).

A hot melt adhesive is a thermoplastic glue that is thermally melted on application and attains adhesion strength upon cooling. Hot melt adhesives consist of one or more polymers as well as additives such as stabilizers, pigments and resins, which are carefully blended to exhibit different characteristics from base polymers. Hot melt adhesives are named after polymer bases. Various types of hot melt adhesives include ethylene vinyl acetate, polyolefin, polyamide, styrenic block copolymers, polyester, etc. Hot melt adhesives are used in several industries including packaging, non-woven, automotive, product assembly, textiles, tapes and labels, woodworking, paper bonding, electronics and many more.

Hot melt adhesives are 100% solid thermoplastic materials without any volatile organic compounds, which makes them safe for use in production, transportation, application and storage. They are also environment friendly and safe for use by humans. Properties such as higher setting speeds and heat resistance and easy disposal gives hot melt adhesives a competitive advantage over water and solvent based adhesives, and is a major factor driving market growth. The setting speed of hot melt adhesives range between 5 and 30 seconds, enabling speedier production lines as compared to conventional adhesives. In addition, technological advancements in polymer bases are expected to further drive this market. Development of hydrophilic and polyamide hot melt adhesives is also gaining attention in developed countries, thereby driving growth of the hot melt adhesives market.

On the basis of polymer base, the hot melt adhesives market has been segmented into ethylene vinyl acetate, polyolefin, polyamide, styrenic block copolymers and others. The ethylene vinyl acetate segment is anticipated to account for a major share in the hot melt adhesives market by 2025. The polyolefin segment accounts for the highest market share across the globe and is expected to witness the highest CAGR of 6.4% in terms of value, during the forecast period (2015-2025). The styrenic block copolymers and ethylene vinyl acetate based hot melt adhesives are anticipated to grow at a steady rate during the forecast period.

On the basis of application, the hot melt adhesives market is segmented into packaging, automotive, construction, healthcare products and others. Others include textile, electronics, paper bonding and footwear. The packaging segment is expected to dominate the market with over 35% share in the global market. Consumption of hot melt adhesives in healthcare products is expected to increase rapidly in the near future. Application in healthcare products is expected to witness a CAGR of 5.4% during the forecast period. Increasing awareness pertaining to hygiene coupled with technological advancements in polymer bases, especially for hygiene, is expected to boost demand for hot melt adhesives during the forecast period.

We remind that, as MRC wrote previously, the global ethylene market is fueled by growing demand in packaging applications, booming construction industry, and rising demand from the automotive sector. The mass production of ethylene by catalytic oxydehydrogenation is anticipated to boost its demand over the next five years. Global ethylene market (Industry) was valued at USD156 bln in 2013 and is projected to reach USD234.2 bln by 2020, expanding at a CAGR of 6% from 2014 to 2020, as per Transparency Market Report.

Global carbon fiber reinforced plastic market to be worth USD20.92 bln by 2020

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The global Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic Market is expected to reach USD20.92 bln by 2020, as per Plastemart with reference to RadiantInsights.

Growing demand for high performance, light weight materials in automotive and aerospace industries is expected to remain a key driving factor for the global carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) market. Stringent regulations pertaining to vehicular emissions and high fuel prices have prompted CFRP adoption in automotive industry particularly in the U.S. and Europe. CRFP is a light weight material and provides significant weight reduction in windmill applications; thereby it's improving energy efficiency. The market is poised for growth owing to several benefits offered by CFRP, including rigidity and high strength. High-cost of CFRP is expected to remain a key challenge for market participants over the forecast period.

Polyacrylonitrile (PAN) and petroleum pitch are the key raw materials used for manufacturing CFRP. PAN-based CFRP emerged as the leading raw material and accounted for over 90% of total market volume in 2013. PAN is also expected to witness the highest growth of 14.4% from 2014 to 2020. The growth may be attributed to superior properties offered by PAN-based CFRP. Further key findings from the study suggest:

- Thermoset was the leading product segment and accounted for 77.1% of total market volume in 2013. Thermoplastic CFRP is expected to witness the highest growth of 15.4% over the forecast period on account of high viscosity and short-process time offered by it;

- Aerospace emerged as the leading application segment and accounted for 23.5% of total market volume in 2013. The rise in demand can be attributed to its increasing adoption across the commercial aviation sector in Europe. Automotive is expected to be the fastest growing application segment at a CAGR of 19.5% from 2014 to 2020. Focus towards improving fuel efficiency by reducing overall weight of automobiles particularly in the U.S. and Europe is expected to drive CFRP demand in automotive industry;

- North America was the leading regional market and accounted for 36.8% of total market volume in 2013. Growing CFRP demand in automotive and aviation & defense sectors on account of stringent environmental regulations and need for fuel efficient vehicles is expected to drive the regional market over the forecast period. Europe is expected to witness significant growth of 16.4% from 2014 to 2020. Japan, China and Taiwan are the leading CFRP consumers in Asia Pacific and together accounts for over 90% of the regional market;

- Global carbon fiber reinforced plastic market is highly concentrated with top four companies accounting for over 60% of total market. Key market participants include Toho, Toray, Group, Mitsubishi Rayon Co. Ltd., Zoltek Cytec Industries SGL-Group. Other companies operating in the global market include Hexcel Corporation, Cytec Industries, Formosa Plastics Corporation, Hyosung, AKSACA etc.

We remind that, as MRC reported earlier and according to MarketsandMarkets, the global carbon fiber market size, in terms of value, is projected to reach US$3.51 bln by 2020, at a CAGR of 9.1% between 2015 and 2020. The global Carbon Fiber Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) Market, in terms of value, is projected to reach USD35.75 bln by 2020, at a CAGR of 9.9% between 2015 and 2020. This growth is fuelled by the increasing production capacities of Boeing and Airbus, rising demand of fuel efficient vehicle, and growing application of CFRP in other application sectors such as sporting goods, civil engineering, and wind energy globally.

Thermoplastic composites market to register CAGR of 6.5% between 2015 and 2020

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The thermoplastic composites market size of end products in terms of value is projected to reach around USD9.9 billion by 2020 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.5% between 2015 and 2020, reported Plastemart with reference to MarketsandMarkets.

Major market segments which are expected to drive this market are transportation, aerospace & defense, electrical & electronic, and consumer goods.

Agreements & partnerships and expansion of production capacity were the key strategies adopted by industry players to maintain growth in the thermoplastic composites market. The thermoplastic composites has wide industrial applications and new collaborations and agreements are paving the way for fulfilling the ever changing demand for new applications with better physical and mechanical properties. As a result of this, a diverse application base is developing for thermoplastic composites. Market players are focusing on signing new agreements with end-user companies especially in aerospace, automotive, industries that can meet the growing demand for thermoplastic composite.

The market demand for the use of thermoplastic composites is increasing across a wide spectrum of applications, and sustained growth is expected for thermoplastic composites in the electrical and electronics, transportation, and aerospace & defense industry segments over the next five years. Very fast part forming cycle time and high impact strength are boosting the penetration of thermoplastic in these applications.

The presence of emerging economies such as India and China are helping the thermoplastic composites market to grow in the Asia-Pacific region. The freeing up and privatization of the industry, and massive foreign investment combined with low costs are factors responsible for this growth. Growing environment concern and demand for high fuel efficient cars has led to an increase in demand for thermoplastic composites from the automotive Industry. China is the largest market for market automobiles activities in Asia-Pacifichelping it to secure the top position in Asia-Pacific thermoplastic composites market.

We remind that, as MRC wrote before, in May 2015, Hanwha Azdel, Inc. announced that growing demand for lightweight composites in North America and Europe has prompted the company to increase capacity for its Azdel SuperLite lightweight reinforced thermoplastic (LWRT) composite product at its Lynchburg, Va. production facility.

Polyethylene to lead global growth of composite decking & railing market from 2015 to 2020

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The composite decking market& railing market is estimated to grow from USDbln in 2015 to USD3.09 bln by 2020, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.60% from 2015 to 2020, as per Plastemart with reference to Reports and Reports.

Polyethylene (PE) composite decking & railing hold the largest market share. Polypropylene (PP) composite decking & railing is to have maximum growth during the forecast period. North America is the major market for PE based composite decking & railing.

PE composite decking & railing is more economical in comparison to PP composite decking & railing. Polyethylene resin is classified into high density polyethylene (HDPE) and low density polyethylene (LDPE).

Composite decking & railing products manufactured with HDPE has high strength and stiffness. LDPE composite decking & railing products contain additives which aid to increase its strength. HDPE resin used in decking & railing has high strength and stiffness, which is ideal for residential end use where joist 16 inch on center composite decking is used the most. These are some of the factors driving the global polyethylene composite decking & railing market. PP resin is the second-most commonly used resin for the production of composite decking & railing.

RoW is projected to be the fastest growing PP composite decking & railing market, followed by Asia-Pacific. There are certain properties of PP which makes it superior in comparison to PE. PP resin is resistant to thermal expansion and contraction, is able to maintain the structural integrity as well as long durability of decking & railing. PP has better creep resistance and is less slippery. Moreover, as polypropylene resin is stiffer compared to other resins, longer decking boards can be manufactured using PP resin. Due to these properties polypropylene composite decking & railing is expected to grow at the highest CAGR in the next five years.

As MRC wrote before, the global automotive composites market was valued at USD3062.7 mln in 2014, which is expected to increase to USD7019.7 mln by 2022 at a CAGR of 8.8%, as per Persistence Market Research.