27th April 2023
Long Fiber Thermoplastics (LFTs) are a type of composite material that consists of a thermoplastic matrix reinforced with long, continuous fibers. The fibers used in LFTs are typically glass, carbon, or aramid fibers, which provide high strength, stiffness, and impact resistance to the composite.
LFTs are different from short fiber reinforced thermoplastics, as they have longer fibers that are aligned in the direction of the applied load. This orientation of the fibers provides better mechanical properties and a more isotropic behavior than short-fiber reinforced composites.
LFTs are used in a wide range of applications, including automotive parts, sporting goods, consumer goods, and industrial equipment. They offer several advantages over traditional materials such as metals, including a higher strength-to-weight ratio, corrosion resistance, and the ability to be molded into complex shapes.
The Global Long Fiber Thermoplastics Market size by revenue was 3.85 billion USD in 2022 and it is projected to reach 8.38 billion USD by 2030 with a CAGR of 10.2% in the forecast period of 2023-2030. The long fiber thermoplastics (LFT) market is driven by several factors including:
Lightweight: Long fiber thermoplastics have high strength-to-weight ratios, making them a popular choice for lightweight in the automotive and aerospace industries. They can replace traditional materials like metals, reducing overall weight and improving fuel efficiency.
Durability: LFTs have high impact resistance, fatigue resistance, and creep resistance, making them ideal for applications where durability is crucial, such as in the automotive and construction industries.
Cost-effectiveness: LFTs can be produced in high volumes at a relatively low cost compared to traditional materials. Additionally, they can be easily processed using injection molding, reducing production time and costs.
Environmental sustainability: LFTs are recyclable and can be reused in manufacturing processes, making them an environmentally friendly alternative to traditional materials like metals.
Growing demand for composites: The demand for composites is increasing in several industries, including automotive, aerospace, and construction. Long fiber thermoplastics are a type of composite material, which is driving demand for LFTs.
The leading companies in the Long Fiber Thermoplastics Market include Celanese Corporation, SABIC, Lanxess AG, BASF SE, Mitsubishi Chemical Group Corporation, Avient Corporation, Daicel Polymer Ltd., Asahi Kasei Corporation, RTP Company, Inc., and Solvay SA.
With the help of Electronic Fluorocarbons (EFC), Solvay S.A. was able to secure exclusive distribution rights for its goods in North America in December 2022.
The Mobility & Materials Business of DuPont was acquired by Celanese Corporation in November 2022, expanding its line of thermoplastic and elastomer products.
The Long Fiber Thermoplastics Market is segmented by Resin, Fiber, and End-User
Based on the type of Resin
The sector with the most revenue share is polypropylene, and it is anticipated that it will continue to dominate the market throughout the projection period. The automotive, textile, packaging, and construction industries all make substantial use of thermoplastics based on polypropylene. Long-fiber thermoplastics made of polypropylene are significantly less expensive than those made of polyamide and polyether ether ketone. As a result, they are becoming more prevalent in the construction and automobile industries.
Based on the type of fiber
Polypropylene has the largest revenue share, and it is projected that it will continue to rule the market for the duration of the forecast period. Thermoplastics based on polypropylene are widely used in the automotive, textile, packaging, and construction industries. Compared to those produced of polyamide and polyether ether ketone, long-fiber thermoplastics made of polypropylene are much less expensive. They are consequently becoming more common in the automotive and construction sectors.
Based on End-User
The market for long glass fiber thermoplastics used in automotive applications is anticipated to grow by more than 10% during the forecasted period. The product's stiffness and robustness, which are suitable for the production of sports utility vehicles, account for its widespread use in the automotive industry. These goods are used in the aircraft sector to produce aeronautical machinery that is lighter and less bulky, facilitating transportation. Additionally, it is used to make electronic equipment.
Due to the fact that major producers of carbon and glass fibres are located in Germany, France, and the UK, Europe holds the largest proportion of the global market for long-fiber thermoplastics. The market for long-fiber thermoplastics, which are widely used in the automobile industry, is expanding rapidly in the area. Due to OEMs' increased focus on producing electric vehicles, the end-use industry for electronics, which is also among the top consumers of long-fiber thermoplastics, is experiencing substantial expansion in the European region. These elements have contributed to an increase in long-fiber thermoplastic demand in the area.
During the forecast period, Asia Pacific is expected to have the quickest CAGR. Due to its extensive supply chain and accessibility to raw materials, the region is predicted to experience the fastest growth. The need for long-fiber thermoplastics is also growing as electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing expands in the area. Electric vehicle production and supply are dominated by China. The International Energy Agency (IEA) reports that China sold the most electric vehicles (EVs) in 2021 with 3.3 million units sold.
The Long Fiber Thermoplastics (LFT) market is expected to witness significant growth in the coming years due to the rising demand for lightweight and high-performance materials in various industries such as automotive, aerospace, and consumer goods. The superior mechanical properties of LFT, such as high strength and stiffness, combined with their ease of processing and recyclability, make them an attractive option for manufacturers looking to improve their product performance while reducing costs and environmental impact.
Overall, the Long Fiber Thermoplastics market presents a promising opportunity for investors and manufacturers alike to capitalize on the growing demand for lightweight and high-performance materials. With continuous advancements in technology and increasing awareness among end-users, the LFT market is expected to witness steady growth in the years to come.