Kapton tape is an electrically insulating heat resistant tape manufactured by condensation reaction of pyromellitic dianhydride and 4,4′-oxydiphenylamine. Also known as polyimide tape, it is compatible with a wide temperature ranges (from as low as -269°C to as high as 260°C). Kapton tape is extensively employed in various industries such as aerospace, spacecraft, medical, electronic, and 3D printing. It is widely used in flexible printed circuit boards and thermal blankets, which are typically used in satellites, spacecraft, etc. Kapton tape has become a material of choice in cryogenics applications, as it possess excellent dielectric and thermal insulation properties at low thermal gradient. It is also used in ultra-high vacuum operations as an insulator due to its low outgassing rate. Kapton tape is employed in X-ray detectors, as it possesses high mechanical & thermal stability and high transmittance to X-rays. It is used to protect electrical components during soldering. It is also used as a wire and cable wrap.
The Kapton tape market can be segmented based on product type and application. In terms of product type, the market can be bifurcated into silicon based and acrylic based. Silicon based Kapton tape is the most commonly available tape in the market. However, rise in customer needs for silicon free formulation based tapes with high adhesion at mid-level temperatures is boosting the demand for acrylic based Kapton tape. Acrylic based Kapton tape has higher adhesion at mid-range temperatures (0°C to 100°C); however, silicone adhesives have higher adhesion at lower temperatures (under 0°C) and higher temperatures (above 100°C). Acrylic based tapes are further sub-divided into pure and modified acrylic based Kapton tapes. Pure acrylics have low tack and provide less adhesion to hard-to bond plastics such as LDPE and HDPE. Modified acrylics almost share the same characteristics as pure acrylic; however, they have superior adhesion to hard-to-bond plastics and are more expensive than pure acrylics. Based on application, the market can be split into aerospace & defense, automotive, industrial, electronic, packaging, and others (such as mining & drilling and medical). Rise in demand for circuit board masking tape during electronic manufacturing process is boosting the demand for Kapton tapes. Increase in demand for powder coating, typically in automotive and transformer manufacturing industries, is also propelling the demand for Kapton tapes.
Rise in demand for films with excellent di-electric insulation properties, high temperature stability, and high chemical & solvent resistance for various end-use applications is driving the Kapton tape market. However, these tapes are susceptible to moisture attack and mechanical tear. This is expected to restrain market growth. However, rise in research activities in order to enhance its properties is likely to boost the sales of Kapton tape during the forecast period. Increase in demand for anti-static versions of adhesives in Kapton tape with no residue after removal of adhesive is acting as an opportunity for Kapton tape manufacturers.
North America is the leading consumer of Kapton tape, led by the significant growth in electronic and automotive industries. Increase in research activities in the U.S. toward the development of various adhesives such as natural and synthetic rubber for Kapton tape formulation is also boosting the Kapton tape market. Asia Pacific, followed by the Europe, is the next leading consumer of Kapton tape. Emergence of middle class with high disposable income in China, India, and ASEAN coupled with high FDI investment in electronic and automotive sectors, typically in Germany, France, and the U.K., is also boosting the Kapton tape market in Asia Pacific and Europe region The Kapton tape market in Latin America and Middle East & Africa is less developed due to low product awareness. However, expansion in the automotive industry in South Africa, GCC, Brazil, and Mexico is anticipated to augment the Kapton tape market in these regions.
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Key players operating in the global Kapton tape market include E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company, 3M Company, Nitto Denko Corporation, Botron Company Inc., Polyonics, Inc., and Can-Do National Tape.