Impact of COVID-19 on the Fiberglass Market: Implications for Businesses – KSU
Global Fiberglass Market: Highlights
- Fiberglass is the fiber made in various forms using molten glass as the raw material. Several glasses are introduced into the oven to obtain fiberglass depending on the final application. These glasses include E glass, S glass, ECR glass, C glass and others.
- The fiberglass market is expected to grow at a CAGR of over 4.5% of 2019 at 2027. The growth of light vehicles associated with upcoming wind power projects in the Asia-Pacific market is expected to drive the fiberglass market in 2027.
- The different forms of fiberglass are strands, wicks, threads, mats and fabrics. The filament comes out of the ring as the first product. These filaments are combined to form strands or threads. These strands are pulled by the winders and wound into wicks which are used to make mats. Rugs are also made from strands.
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Global Fiberglass Market: Trends and Key Segments
- Fiberglass is a material with high strength, fatigue resistance and rigidity. Hence, it is used to make blades for offshore and onshore wind turbines. The consumption of fiberglass in the manufacture of wind turbine blades has increased significantly due to technological advancements. The growing demand for wind power is expected to drive the fiberglass market. Companies sign long-term agreements in order to exploit the market.
- The growing demand for fiberglass from the automotive industry provides a lucrative opportunity for manufacturers of fiberglass used in various vehicle components such as interiors, exteriors, frames and structural components. This trend is expected to continue over the forecast period.
- The availability of carbon fiber, due to its stiffness and light weight properties, is a major challenge facing the global fiberglass industry. In addition, the presence of many Chinese players supplying fiberglass at lower prices creates fierce competition in the global fiberglass industry.
- The different technologies used to process fiberglass include pultrusion, draping, compression molding, resin transfer molding, filament winding, injection molding and others. Resin draping and infusion technology has dominated the global fiberglass market by 2018 in terms of technology with a share of more than 40%. The draping process is a technique widely used for the manufacture of composites. This is the impregnation of the dry reinforcement with a low viscosity thermosetting resin with manual lamination, which can also be carried out using several other automated techniques. Resin transfer molding and vacuum resin transfer molding are easily adopted as the inexpensive methods for manufacturing fiberglass products.
- The automotive and construction sectors are the main applications which have accounted for more than 40% in 2016 due to the growing demand for light vehicles capable of reducing pollution.
Global Fiberglass Market: Regional Highlights
- The Middle East provides an attractive platform for fiberglass consumption due to the region’s growing focus on the construction industry to steer away from the diminishing revenue generation from oil production. This region is also home to fiberglass production plants of leading players such as Jushi Fiberglass, Busubait Group, Gulf Fiberglass Factory, etc.
- The expansion of the automotive industry is driving the fiberglass market in Europe. Companies such as UK-based Cristex Composite Materials and Poland-based Fiberglass Fabrics only supply fabrics to end-use industries. These companies do not have in-house fiberglass production. They rely on purchasing wicks from fiberglass manufacturers to produce fabric.
- North America accounted for more than 30% global fiberglass market share in 2018. S-glass and E-glass are the main segments of concentration in terms of glass type in North America. Owens Corning and Johns Manville are key manufacturers of fiberglass in North America.
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Key developments in the global fiberglass market
- In February 2020, Moi Composite presented the MAMBO (Motor Additive Manufacturing Boat), a fiberglass boat printed in 3D in collaboration with industrial partners: Autodesk (supplied the tools for the realization of the three-dimensional design of the hull), Catmarine (transformed the different digitally produced sections in a finished boat), Micad (complete designed structures), Owens Corning (supplied the glass reinforcing fibers), Osculati (supplied the accessories capable of adapting to the curves and design of the entire shell) and UCINA in order to overcome the limits of custom design and performance of conventional manufacturing and 3D printing for strong, light and durable composite products.
- In june 2018, Owens Corning has entered into a strategic cooperation and supply agreement with Chongqing Polycomp International Corp. (CPIC) for a joint investment in technology, as well as the construction and operation by CPIC of a new facility dedicated to manufacturing high modulus fiberglass products in China.
- In april 2018, Owens Corning has entered into technology licensing and manufacturing supply agreements with Taiwan Glass Ind. Corp., based in Taiwan.
- In december 2017, Taishan Fiberglass has announced its intention to invest US $ 76.28 million in its project which should produce 5 kilotons of ultra-fine electronic fiberglass. This is expected to bring the company’s fiberglass production capacity to 705 kilotons, helping it compete in the difficult market in China, which generates revenue by exporting products to Western countries.
Global Fiberglass Market: Competition Landscape
- Large companies that manufacture fiberglass include Owens Corning, Jushi Group Co., Ltd., Taishan Fiberglass Inc., Johns Manville, Chongqing Polycomp International Corp., Xingtai Jinniu Fiberglass Co., Ltd., Shandong Fiberglass Group Co., Ltd., Glasstex Fiberglass Materials Corp., etc. . . among others.
- The majority of the world’s fiberglass manufacturers have integrated upstream operations. Many fiberglass manufacturers are opting for strategic alliances with OEMs to enter the market.
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