High speed rail is one of the safest and fastest modes of transport, which runs at a speed of over 200 km per hour. Coatings applied on the surface of high speed rails for interior and exterior protection from weather are called high speed rail coatings. These coatings also impart additional properties such as high yield strength for functional as well as aesthetic appeal. The global high speed rail coating market can be segmented on the basis of type into 1-K, 2-K, water-borne, and solvent-borne. They are used for various applications such as steel component coating, exterior protection, aesthetic finishes, interior aluminum coatings, and underframe coatings. High speed rail coatings are manufactured from a wide range of resins such as acrylics, epoxy, fluoropolymers, plastisols, polyester, and polyurethanes.
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Global rise in demand for mass transportation can be attributed to the surge in investments in the expansion of railway networks across both developing and developed economies. High speed rails have the ability to cover long distances in very short time. Government initiatives to develop strong high-speed rail networks in various countries and make mass transits faster, safer, and efficient have opened up opportunities for the global high speed coatings market. However, a major restraining factor of the high speed rail coatings market are the growing environmental concerns pertaining to the volatile organic compounds content in coatings. Nevertheless, development of water borne type of coatings have aided the market significantly, as they emit very limited or no volatile organic compounds. Another challenge faced by the high speed rail coating market for the production of coatings is the volatile prices of raw material.
In terms of geography, the global high speed coating market has been segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. The significant development of trade and rapidly growing economies have contributed to the expansion of mass transportation. High speed rails have the ability to cover long distances in shorter time; hence, they are majorly being used for mass transportation, thus enhancing the high speed rail coating market. High speed rail coating market is expected to rise with the increasing high speed rail needs in developing countries like China and India for mass transportation and public transportation. Asia Pacific is expected to lead the market growth followed by Europe because of the rapid growth in mass trading operations. This high consumption is driven by rapid growth in infrastructure development and need for faster transportation at relatively cheaper rates. Developed nations like the U.S are in the process of expanding their high-speed rail networks, due to the increasing demand for mass transportation. Hence the high speed rail coating market is expected to grow in North America. Many countries have developed high speed rail to connect between countries such as Austria, Germany, Spain, and France, thus augmenting the high speed rail coating market. China has 19,000 km of high speed rail as of December 2015, accounting for two-thirds of the world’s total and hence being the world’s largest consumer of high speed rail coating.
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Some of the key players in the high speed rail coating market include Akzo Nobel N.V, BASF SE, PPG Industries, Inc., The Valspar Corporation, Axalta Coating Systems, LLC, PSG Limited, GLS Coatings Ltd, Zytexx, The Sherwin-Williams Company, Fosroc, Henkel, Hollysys, and Siemens.