Fumed Silica Market worth $1.6 billion by 2026

Fumed silica consists of microscopic droplets of amorphous silica fused into branched, chainlike, three-dimensional secondary particles, which agglomerate into tertiary particles. In industry terms, according to Brenntag North America, Inc., a US-based distributor, “Produced by flame hydrolysis of volatile silicon compounds, fumed silica serves as an additive to various solids, powders, liquids, and coatings. Also known as pyrogenic silica, amorphous silica and silicon dioxide, fumed silica consists of submicron particles that move between larger particles, creating a surface layer that acts as a lubricant.

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Consequently, fumed silica is often used as an anti-caking agent. Its ability to increase viscosity also makes fumed silica a popular choice as a thickening agent.” Factors such as huge and increasingly addressable population base and the shift in manufacturing base from North America and Europe to APAC are driving the market. However, the adverse health effects of continued exposure to fumed silica are a major restraint in the market.

MarketsandMarkets expects the global fumed silica market size to grow from USD 1.3 billion in 2021 to USD 1.6 billion by 2026, at a CAGR of 5.1% from 2021 to 2026. The market for fumed silica is segmented, based on type, into hydrophilic and hydrophobic. Hydrophilic fumed silica has been the larger market in 2021. The hydrophilic nature of fumed silica is the result of the attached hydroxyl groups on the silica atom at the particle surface, owing to which the product is capable of hydrogen bonding, helping it to disperse in water.

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Hydrophilic fumed silica helps in increasing the adhesion properties. It also absorbs water off the surface of the particle hence is best suited as an anti-caking agent. However, in 2020 with the outbreak of COVID-19 and the closure of manufacturing capacities of respective industries, the demand for fumed silica has witnessed a decline in growth. The growth is expected to boost during the forecast period at a significant CAGR with the improving market conditions and demand from various industrial applications.

Based on applications, UPR & composites segment is expected to grow at the highest CAGR from 2021 to 2026. It is witnessing high growth owing to increasing resin applications in various industry verticals, technological advancement, and their growing demand in developing regions. Building & construction, pipes & tanks, and automotive applications use UPR extensively for making fiber reinforced plastics (FRP). They find applications in fuel storage tanks, cooling tower components, beams, ladder rails, boat hulls, decks, and small automobile parts (both interior and exterior).

Based on end-use industry, building & construction is projected to be the larger segment in the fumed silica market. Increasing construction activities, coupled with rapid urbanization and industrialization in emerging economies, are leading to the rise in demand for fumed silica in the building & construction industry.

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The fumed silica market is studied for five regions, namely, North America, APAC, Europe, MEA and South America. The APAC region accounted for the largest market share in 2020, in terms of both value and volume. Furthermore, the market for fumed silica in the APAC region is projected to grow at the highest CAGR from 2021 to 2026, in terms of both value and volume.

In 2020, the fumed silica market declined amid the COVID-19 pandemic, with a marginal decline in its CAGR. The market was affected, mainly by the slow raw material production in many countries, supply chain disruptions, and hampered trade movements in 2020. In the first quarter of 2021, the market for fumed silica witnessed an increase in demand worldwide, compared to the same period in 2020.

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