Why Companies Are Investing in Conductive Silicon

Why Companies Are Investing in Conductive Silicon

By Knowledge Sourcing Intelligence Blog

The Conductive Silicone Market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 6.12% over the forecast period to reach a market size of US$5.455 billion in 2026 from US$3.600 billion in 2019. Conductive silicone is a silicone-containing carbon that has excellent sensing characteristics. It allows electricity to flow through it. Furthermore, its electrical resistance varies with deformation or compression, making it an ideal material for deformation sensors or force development. This material contains advantageous properties, including flexibility, moisture resistance, heat resistance, low-temperature processability, and easy assembly. In comparison to a conventional metallic conductor, conductive silicone rubber are exceptionally flexible and corrosion-resistant. In electrical applications, conductive silicone rubber provides exceptional electromagnetic shielding as well as protection against electrostatic discharge.

conductive silicone market

The key raw materials involved in the production of conductive silicone are silicon metal and methyl chloride. Basic chemical businesses and companies offering catalysts, fillers, and other petrochemicals used in the manufacture of conductive silicone are the two primary groups that provide raw materials required for conductive silicone. They are made by curing silicone rubbers at room temperature and are made from Silicones in the form of a polymer of Silicone that contains hydrogen, carbon, oxygen, and other components. Conducting fillers are applied throughout the curing process to provide them with conductive properties. As coating agents in conductive silicone rubbers, various conductive fillers such as carbon black, carbon fibres, and copper fibres are employed.

Based on market demands, the silicone rubber manufactured may be moulded into various shapes such as strips and sheets. Conductive silicone has a broad range of applications, including coating, fastening, printing, and bonding. They have been utilised in a variety of automotive and industrial applications, including radiofrequency shielding and sealing due to their great biocompatibility, flexibility, strong chemical resistance, stability across a wide temperature range, and ease of manufacture. Electrically conductive silicone adhesives, sealants, and encapsulating products are materials that have been developed to act as electrical conductors. In the electrical and electronics industries, electrically conductive silicone rubber is used for wires, cables, EMI shielding gaskets, and ESD shielding applications. In the automobile sector, silicone rubber is utilised in vehicle engines and wire harnesses. It is also utilised in the automobile industry to identify deformation.

Conductive silicone rubbers are also used as thermal management materials in heavy industrial equipment used in the oil and gas sector. They offer thermal conductivity as well as flexible electrical encapsulation. Furthermore, conductive silicone rubber has the potential to be used in a variety of electronic consumer products and healthcare equipment. It is also utilised as electrodes in medical equipment and ceramic oscillators. Companies are employing a variety of techniques and investing heavily in R&D to achieve technological advancements in conductive silicone. Additionally, favourable regulatory policies are likely to propel the demand for the compound. In 2021, Novation Solutions, LLC (NovationSi), a materials science company specialising in high-quality silicone dispersions, developed PURmix high-consistency rubber (HCR) healthcare compounds that improved the electrical properties of silicone rubber by incorporating a revolutionary single-wall carbon nanotube ("SG101") developed by Zeon Corporation.

The Growing Awareness of Sustainable Development Will Fuel Market Expansion

Silicones are incorporated in environmentally friendly energy systems such as solar and wind power. Silicone is vital because it improves the performance and durability of many commercial and industrial goods. Silicone lends helpful properties to other materials, helping them to last longer, spread better, remain flexible or stiff, and endure high temperatures or humidity, lowering the resource and energy consumption of the goods in which silicones are employed. Dow Inc. showcased a range of products including thermally conductive silicones, silicone EMI shielding materials, and silicone foam as part of innovative solutions for sustainable mobility at the InterBattery 2021 exhibition. Human Horizons, the global provider of innovative mobility and intelligent technologies collaborated with Dow Inc., an internationally known materials science business to develop a novel silicone leather for the harsh automotive interior environment which will be used to upholster the seats on the HiPhi X, giving consumers with a more pleasant and environmentally responsible experience.

Increased Investment in Research and Development Will Drive the Market Growth

Companies are pursuing numerous growth strategies and investing heavily in Research and development to create technologically advanced, one-of-a-kind products. The rise in demand is fueling the new expansion. Silicones have aided in the advancement of technology and inventions like LED lights, electric cars, medical prosthetics, and renewable energy sources like wind turbines and solar panels. China National BlueStar (Group) Co., Ltd., for example, expanded its R&D center in Seoul to strengthen its presence in the country.

Disruption of the Supply Chain Can Restrict Growth

Due to stringent Chinese environmental regulations, several feedstock plants were compelled to close in order to fulfil air quality regulations, resulting in a supply shortfall. The primary issue is to deal with the scarcity of resources without negatively impacting the ecosystem. The need for the materials is rising, but due to the facility closures, there is a mismatch between demand and supply, producing a disturbance in the simple supply chain and limiting growth in the conductive silicone market.

Rising consumer consciousness towards the advantages of using bio-based chemicals over synthetic counterparts, in addition to the high cost of raw materials and increasing competition from alternative goods is likely to slow down the market expansion.

The Asia Pacific Region Will Be a Prominent Player

Rising demand from end-use sectors such as power generation and distribution, solar energy plants, and LED is propelling the market forward. Rapid economic growth increased electronic device manufacturing, and technical innovation is likely to offer possibilities for the silicones market in this area. The majority of the market in this region is due to the availability of cheap labour and raw materials.  Furthermore, the economic success of emerging nations such as Indonesia, Taiwan, China, and India is attracting new foreign investments, resulting in the expansion of different businesses in this area.

The Impact of the Outbreak of COVID-19 on the Conductive Silicone Market

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic had neutral on the conductive silicone industry. The usage of conductive silicone in medical devices is likely to drive market expansion in the future years. However, owing to the temporary closures of certain industries, such as automotive and consumer electronics, demand for conductive silicone materials is projected to fall, hurting market development.