Health Concerns may Hinder the Cast Elastomer Market

The Global Cast Elastomer market is anticipated to increase at a Compound Annual Growth Rate of 3.01% over the predictive period. Elastomers are rubber-like polymers that can stretch far more than other substances and return to their original shape when the force is withdrawn. When elastomers are bent by external forces, they behave like a viscous liquid and resist motion. Cast polyurethanes are cost-effective and reliable elastomers that combine the durability and flexibility of rubber with the functional benefits of high-tech plastics, metals, and ceramics.

Innovations in the Market

Membrane separation technology has reported rapid advancements over the last few decades. The increasing accessibility and demand for wastewater filtration have led to an increase in market demand for membrane separation technology.

According to a press release by Covestro on 26th November 2020, the company has developed a long-lasting cast elastomer that helps the offshore industry decrease its carbon footprint and environmental effect. The polyurethane elastomers are made from cardyon® brand polyols, which include CO2 and provide comparable performance to petrochemical-based elastomers. Covestro's innovative method allows for the production of these precursors from carbon dioxide at a weight ratio of up to 20%, therefore substituting the equivalent quantity of fossil raw materials. Covestro's goal to focus all of its efforts on the Circular Economy is underscored by this breakthrough, which contributes to carbon recycling.

According to a press release by Huntsman on 21st June 2021, the company revealed the IROGRAN® A 85 P 4394 HR TPU, which is the newest addition to a long-standing family of elastomer materials. Huntsman has developed this new thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) grade for technical extrusion components and blown film applications that delivers considerable advantages in terms of durability, production efficiency, and waste reduction over previous generation technology.

Growing Environmental Concerns

Polyurethane cast elastomer is a polymer chemical combination made up of an isocyanate and a polyol in liquid form. Compounds containing the isocyanate group are known as isocyanates. Polyurethane polymers are components of polyurethane foams, thermoplastic elastomers, spandex fibers, and polyurethane paints.  They react with substances constituting alcohol (hydroxyl) groups to generate polyurethane polymers, which are elements of polyurethane foams, thermoplastic elastomers, spandex fibres, and polyurethane paints. Isocyanates can be used to produce a variety of products, including, chemicals, polyurethane foam, insulation materials, surface coatings, automobile seats, furniture, foam mattresses, under-carpet padding, packaging materials, shoes, laminated textiles, polyurethane rubber, and adhesives are just a few examples of polyurethane goods.

However, isocyanate is a dangerous substance and has adverse effects on a person’s body, if exposed to it. Irritation of the skin and mucous membranes, chest constriction, and difficulty breathing are all side effects of isocyanate exposure. Isocyanates are chemicals that have been identified as probable human carcinogens and have been shown to cause cancer in animals. Occupational asthma and other lung disorders, as well as irritation of the eyes, nose, throat, and skin, are the most common side effects of hazardous exposures.

The increasing health and environmental concerns of exposure to isocyanate may constrict the growth of the elastomer market. Moreover, stricter government regulations in regard to elastomer production may hinder the market growth, and affect the market pace in the long term.

Asia Pacific Region to lead the market

The Asia Pacific market is expected to hold the largest market share in the cast elastomer market throughout the forecast period, mainly due to the rising developments in major industries in the region. Advancements in the field of automotive, power, oil, construction, etc have helped in the growth of the cast elastomer market. Moreover, the growing population in countries such as India and China has positively influenced the automotive industry in the region.

Cast elastomers are reliable materials that combine the durability and flexibility of rubber with the functional benefits of high-tech polymers, metals, and ceramics. This is one of the reasons why cast elastomers have become increasingly popular in the end-user industry. The increasing consumer preferences in the region have led to a rise in the end-user industry, which has positively influenced the cast elastomer market. Hence, owing to these increasing market drivers, the cast elastomer market is anticipated to rise in the region.

Covid-19 Insight

The outbreak of the COVID-19 virus resulted in a global economic slowdown. Due to the government-mandated lockdown and social distance limitations, most big corporations experienced significant losses. This had a detrimental impact on the cast elastomer market. The demand for the cast elastomer market declined as a result of the closure of most major industries.

However, the pharmaceutical industry has a positive impact on the cast elastomer market. To control the growing infection cases, the pharmaceutical industry had to mass-produce medical and protective equipment such as PPE kits, hospital gowns, tubes, jackets, etc, which led to an increase in demand for the cast elastomer market. Moreover, with the reopening of most major industries and the increasing consumer demand for sectors such as automotive, energy, and end-user, the market is anticipated to rise substantially.