Global Cross-Linked Polyethylene Market: Snapshot
Cross-linked Polyethylene (XLPE) is derived from polyethylene and with a 3D molecular bond, which is formed within the plastic’s structure. This molecular helps improving the overall characteristics such as abrasion, stress and chemical resistance, and heat deformation. A majority of XLPE used in tubing or piping is obtained from high-density polyethylene. Because XLPE contains cross-linked bonds within the polymer structure, it can change a thermoplastic into a thermoset.
It is important to note here that cross-linking is achieved during or post extrusion of the tubing. Cross-linking is done to improve the elevated temperature characteristics in base polymer. The process that XLPE undergoes enables it to bend into a wide-radius turn or accommodate turns with the help of elbow joints. On back of its flexible properties, cross-linked polyethylene has become one of the leading contenders for use in residential water plumbing.
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Direct routing of pipes is possible as well using cross-linked polyethylene. XLPE has properties that enable it run across a distribution point to an outlet fixture. Splicing or cutting the pipe is not required for this. Furthermore, direct routing helps in reducing the need for costly joints. Other benefits offered by cross-linked polyethylene include easier installation, improved water pressure at fixtures, negated fire risk during installation, ability to merge XLPE with existing PVC and copper systems, improved longevity, and other environmental benefits.
However, it still has problems with yellow brass fitting. Also concerns relating to degradation from sunlight are yet to be resolved.
Global Cross-Linked Polyethylene Market: Overview
Polyethylene is a commodity plastic that is available at low cost and is easy to process. Due to its thermoplastic nature, it cannot be reprocessed repeatedly; hence crosslinking is required to retain its desirable properties, especially at high temperatures. This process changes the nature of polyethylene from thermoplastic to thermoset, making it more durable.
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The cross-linked polyethylene market can be broadly classified on the basis of type into high density polyethylene (HDPE), low density polyethylene (LDPE), ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), polyolefenic elastomer (POE), and others such as linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE). Based on application, the market may be segmented into wires and cables, automotive, plumbing, and others, including dental, groundskeeping, medical, and sports.
This report offers an in-depth analysis of market segments and the competitive landscape. The report also profiles major competitors in the global cross-linked polyethylene market based on various attributes such as company overview, SWOT analysis, product portfolio, financial overview, business strategies, and recent developments.
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Global Cross-Linked Polyethylene Market: Key Trends
On the basis of type, high density polyethylene (HDPE) is a prominent segment of the cross-linked polyethylene market. Cross-linked HDPE has high demand due to its thermosetting nature, which offers better mechanical strength and greater stress crack resistance in comparison to traditional HDPE. Besides this, cross-linked HDPE is expansively used in the production of pipes and tubings to transport gases and cold/hot water and its low cost makes it a rapidly growing segment of the cross-linked polyethylene market. Apart from this, cross-linked HDPE delivers resistance to corrosion, abrasion, cracks, and stress because of its high tensile strength due to intensive cross-linking. On the other hand, high insulation properties of low density cross-linked polyethylene make them ideal for use in cables and wires.
In terms of application, plumbing currently accounts for a major share in the market for cross-linked polyethylene. It is used in the construction of water transmission systems and sewer systems. The increasing investment in construction activities, plus several water infrastructure ventures being undertaken by emerging economies, is anticipated to drive market growth.
The automotive industry is also assisting the growth of the cross-linked polyethylene market. For transmission and power distribution channels, cross-linked polyethylene are being heavily used to manufacture battery cables and automobile parts. The demand is expected to grow further due to the increase in hybrid and electronic cars.
However, the risk of plumbing disasters and several safety issues are limiting the growth of the global cross-linked polyethylene market.
Global Cross-Linked Polyethylene Market: Regional Overview
On the basis of geography, the cross-linked polyethylene market can be segmented into North America, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East and Africa. In terms of value and volume, Asia Pacific is slated to witness impressive growth in the market for cross-linked polyethylene over the course of the forecast period. The key factor driving the growth in this region is the large amount of investments made by companies, particularly in the automotive sector. In addition, strong industrial base in the construction sector and several production facilities are being shifted to emerging economies in the region, hence augmenting its growth.
Global Cross-Linked Polyethylene Market: Key Market Players
Some of the prominent key players in the global cross-linked polyethylene market are AkzoNobel N.V., The Dow Chemical Company, ExxonMobil Chemical Company, Inc., Borealis AG, LyondellBasell Industries, PolyOne Corporation, Arkema Group, 3H Vinacom Co., Ltd, Falcone Specialities AG, and Hanwha Chemicals.