A recently released report by the Freedonia Group shows that advanced ceramics will continue to penetrate applications such as capacitors, cutting tools, orthopedic joint implants and membranes, where they are valued for their favorable performance characteristics. Demand is estimated to be lower for body armor, as the Obama administration’s goal is to significantly reduce military involvement in Iraq.
The use of advanced ceramics is highly dependent on the health of the electronic components and electrical equipment industries, which combined accounted for 43% of total demand in 2007. The U.S. electronic components industry is projected to remain sluggish, limiting further advanced ceramics demand.
The medical product market will post the most rapid gains, benefiting from the increasing utilization of ceramics in joint implants and dental procedures.
Other markets set to post above-average gains include chemicals and plastics, environmental, industrial machinery and transportation equipment.
In the environmental market, pollution control is the largest application, but interest in reducing the country’s dependence on foreign oil will also provide opportunities. Emerging applications include the use of ceramic bearings in wind turbines and ceramic materials in photovoltaic modules.
The full report can be viewed at ceramicindustry.com.