According to a new report published by Transparency Market Research (TMR) titled ‘Synthetic Graphite Market – Global Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends, and Forecast, 2018–2026,’ the global synthetic graphite market was valued at around US$ 4 Bn in 2017 and is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of more than 5% during the forecast period. Expansion in the global synthetic graphite market is driven by factors such as increase in demand for synthetic graphite in the metallurgy, electronics, and storage & energy transmission end-use industries. Synthetic graphite is used to manufacture graphite electrodes that are used in electric arc furnaces in order to manufacture metal products. Synthetic graphite can withstand high temperatures. It exhibits superior thermal expansion and thermal shock resistance, which makes it a favorable material for high-temperature applications. The synthetic graphite market in Asia Pacific is expanding at a significant pace due to an increase in demand for synthetic graphite in lithium-ion batteries in the region.
Rise in Demand for Synthetic Graphite in the Metallurgy Application to Drive Synthetic Graphite Market
Synthetic graphite possesses favorable electrical properties, high mechanical strength at high temperatures, high electrical and heat conductivity, low impurity content, chemical stability, and high vibrational resistance. It can withstand temperatures of up to 1,800 °C in electric arc furnaces. It exhibits superior thermal expansion and thermal shock resistance, which help in reducing the entire mass of steel. The EAF method of production of synthetic graphite has gained popularity among steel producers due to its flexibility, quick turnaround time, and lower fixed costs. In addition, regulations are being laid down by China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to encourage capacity expansions for electric arc furnaces. Steel products are widely used in the construction, automotive, infrastructure, aerospace & defense, and oil & gas industries. An increase in demand for metallurgy products from end-use industries is projected to boost the utilization rate of synthetic graphite.
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Rise in the Usage of Lithium-ion Batteries to Create New Opportunities for the Synthetic Graphite Market
Lithium-ion batteries are rechargeable batteries that are gaining popularity in electric vehicles, consumer electronics, aerospace applications, etc. Rise in the production of electric vehicles across all regions has boosted demand for lithium-ion batteries. The total demand for lithium-ion batteries is estimated to rise from about 60,000 MwH in 2015 to approximately 160,000 to 190,000 MwH in 2025. Synthetic graphite has been identified as a critical raw material worldwide for the battery industry due to the rise in use of lithium-ion batteries. There is 11 times more graphite than lithium in a typical lithium-ion battery. The current choice for battery makers is synthetic graphite due to its consistency, security of supply, and purity in synthetic material. For instance, Japan, China, and the U.S. are major producers of battery-grade synthetic graphite. Synthetic graphite accounts for 34% of the anode market. Therefore, high demand for synthetic graphite is likely to present significant opportunities in lithium-ion battery production, owing to a rise in the usage of electric vehicles across all regions.
Graphite Electrodes to Dominate the Synthetic Graphite Market
In terms of product, the global synthetic graphite market has been divided into graphite electrodes, isostatic graphite, specialty graphite, carbon fibers, and others. The graphite electrode segment is anticipated to dominate the market due to the extensive use of graphite electrodes in electric arc furnaces to manufacture metal products. The carbon fiber segment is anticipated to expand at a significant pace from 2018 to 2026.
Rise in Use of Synthetic Graphite in Developing Economies to Create Opportunities
In terms of region, the global synthetic graphite market has been categorized into Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, Middle East & Africa, and Latin America. Rapid urbanization in emerging countries such as China, India, and Mexico an increase in spending power of the citizens in these countries are boosting the demand for electronic products. This, in turn, is estimated to drive growth of the synthetic graphite market during the forecast period.
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Few Key Players Operate in the Semi-consolidated Synthetic Graphite Market
Key players covered in this report include GrafTech International, Showa Denko K.K., SGL Group, Graphite India Limited, HEG Limited, Tokai Carbon Co., Ltd., Nippon Carbon Co., Ltd., SEC Carbon, Ltd., Kaifeng Carbon Co., Ltd., and Nantong Yangzi Carbon Co., Ltd. GrafTech International, Showa Denko K.K, and Tokai Carbon Co., Ltd.. These companies operate across the globe. This helps them establish control over the complete value chain and sustain their leading position in the market.