Smart polymers market size was estimated at USD 4.48 Billion in 2021 and is projected to register a CAGR of 11.9% during the forecast period (2022-2030), to reach around USD 12.32 Billion by 2030.
Smart polymers also called functional polymers or stimuli-responsive polymers that respond according to the environment they are in. These polymers are tough but flexible, easy to process, resilient and biocompatible that find numerous applications. They are responsive to several environmental factors like temperature, pH, humidity, the wavelength of light, magnetic field, and electric field.
The increased demand for Smart Polymers for different applications in sectors like automotive, textile biomedical, and biotechnology are anticipated to positively drive the industry growth. They find numerous applications in tissue engineering scaffolds, cell culture supports and drug delivery systems owing to factors such as their ability to change shape and become permeable to water. Additionally, in the automotive industry, they are used for manufacturing various smart-material-based actuators, sensors, and other exterior and interior components. Smart polymers have properties like excellent tensile strength, toughness, and stiffness due to which they are estimated to grow their demand in the automotive industry. In recent years, Europe held a substantial share of the global smart polymers market owing to the factors like early acceptance of high-edge technologies. Increasing investment coupled with the government encouraging the growth of the biomedical and healthcare sector is also a driving factor for the market in this region.
Smart polymers are capable of enduring environmental conditions that are used to manufacture environment-adaptive fabric serving as the major key driver for the industry. In the biomedical sector, they find numerous applications such as drug delivery systems, cell culture supports, and others owing to their ability to adapt to different pH. In addition, they are also used in self-adaptive wound dressing where they automatically generate moisture balance in and around the wound. Thus, boosting the market growth in the healthcare sector. Furthermore, their vast variety of applications in the automotive industry owing to recent advancements in technology is fueling the market trend.
The high costs of smart polymers compared to conventional polymers restrict market growth owing to the fluctuations in the prices of raw materials. Additionally, difficulty in processing coupled with high-costing in technology hinders market growth. Additionally, limited knowledge regarding smart polymers among consumers hampers the market growth.
In automotive applications, smart polymers are expected to provide new opportunities for vehicle variable features. The novel materials improve vehicle performance at a lower cost while adding new high-tech features. Also, these materials make design flexibility better. With relatively little mechanical complexity, designers can use these materials to simplify products, add features, increase performance, or increase reliability.
The smart polymers market has been significantly impacted due to the COVID-19 pandemic in multiple regions around the world. Smart polymers are used in biomedical industries to manufacture many biomedical devices such as ventilators, artificial bones and teeth, pacemakers, dental implants, and many more. The requirement for these biomedical devices during the pandemic increased resulting in the steady growth of the smart polymers market. Additionally, they were also used in manufacturing of the N-95 face masks which increased the demand for smart polymers in the market. For instance, the production of N-95 masks jumped from 21.0 million per day to 150 million during the pandemic. On the other hand, sectors like automotive, and textile were affected negatively during the pandemic owing to factors such as transportation restrictions, decreased demand, limited availability of raw materials, and economic slowdown. Shipments were impacted during the initial lockdown due to a labor shortage and the closure of a manufacturing facility which led to the decline, especially in the smart polymer market
Smart Polymers Report Coverage:
|Report Attributes||Report Details|
|Market Size in 2030 (USD Billion)||12.32 Billion|
|By Type||Shape Memory Polymers, Electroactive Polymers, Self-Healing Polymers, and Others|
|By Material||Physical Stimuli-Responsive, Chemical Stimuli-Responsive, Biological Stimuli-Responsive|
|By Application||Biomedical& Biotechnology, Textile, Electrical and Electronics, Automotive, and others|
|By Region||North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, Middle East, and Africa|
|Key Players||BASF SE, Nippon Shokubai, Advanced Polymer Materials Inc., FMC Corporation, Autonomic Materials Inc., Nexgenia Corporation, Covestro AG, Lubrizol Corporation, Sigma-Aldrich Corporation, Acros Organics|
The type segment is divided into shape memory polymers, electroactive polymers, self-healing polymers, and others. The shape memory segment is expected to contribute the largest market share during the forecast period. Shape memory polymers are used in a wide variety of applications such as surgical fixation telecommunication, medical clothing, robotics, and automation which are estimated to support the growth of this segment during the projected period. Furthermore, the electroactive polymers segment is also projected to register the fastest CAGR growth during the forecast period. Due to their ability to deliver drugs precisely and in the required quantities, they are potential materials for drug delivery systems in the biomedical field. Additionally, they are useful in the production of lightweight prosthetic parts that have the potential to alter the lives of many people.
The blending segment is divided into physical stimuli-responsive, chemical stimuli-responsive, and biological stimuli-responsive. The physical stimuli-responsive is expected to contribute the largest revenue share to the industry growth. The factors such as the ability to respond to environmental stimuli and change the microstructural features are projected to support the growth of this segment. They find wide variety of applications in the biomedical & biotechnology and automotive sectors. Furthermore, the physical stimuli are sub-segmented into photo-responsive polymers, thermos-responsive polymers, electroactive polymers, and pressure-responsive polymers. Thermos-responsive sub-segment is widely used because they make it possible to make cell sheets, deliver drugs in-situ, and 3D-print under normal conditions, which result in driving the market in the biomedical field.
The application segment is separated into biomedical& biotechnology, textile, electrical and electronics, automotive, and others. The biomedical& biotechnology segment is estimated to contribute the largest share to the industry growth during the forecast period. From 2020 to 2028, the healthcare industry is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 5.5 percent in the United States, according to the journal Health Affairs. These factors are anticipated to drive the biomedical and healthcare industries, which in turn are anticipated to increase smart polymer consumption in the coming years. Additionally, the smart polymers market has a significant application in the textile industry. In 2015, this industry contributed 18.1% of revenue, and it is anticipated to positively influence market dynamics shortly.
The regional segment comprises Asia Pacific, North America, Europe, Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa. North America is anticipated to contribute the largest share during the projected period. The factors such as the established biomedical & biotechnology and textile industry coupled with favorable expenditures from major market players in terms of research and development of innovative polymers are estimated to fuel the growth of the Smart Polymers industry in the North American region.
U.S. is also expected to account for the fastest CAGR growth during the forecast period owing to the factor that the global healthcare market is dominated by the United States. Hence, resulting in the nation’s rapidly expanding medical sector is anticipated to increase demand for smart polymers.
Smart Polymers Market Competitive Landscape:
The market competitive landscape and detailed company profiles have been analyzed in the report to provide an evaluation of the major players operating in the industry. Additionally, technological advancements, emphasis on business expansions through multiple business strategies, and surging expenditures on Research and Development (R&D) have accelerated the growth of the concerned market in the case of the main firms present in the market. The key players functioning in the market include-
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