The market for powder injection molding (PIM) is expected to register a CAGR of more than 10%, during the forecast period. Major factors driving the market studied are the rise in demand for metal injection molding (MIM) from the automotive industry and the shift of focus from conventional metal forming techniques in the manufacturing of aerospace components. However, the growth of bio-based polymers is expected to hinder the market growth.
- The metal injection molding (MIM) technology segment dominated the market. It is expected to grow during the forecast period, owing to the growing industries such as aerospace, consumer electronics, etc.
- Emerging applications in the optical fiber industry are likely to act as an opportunity in the future.
- Asia-Pacific dominated the global market, with the largest consumption generated from China and Japan.
Key Market Trends
Metal Injection Molding (MIM) Technology to Dominate the Market
-The differences in the market shares of the applications for metal injection molding are quite distinct in various geographical regions. For instance, in Asia, the MIM market is dominated by consumer electronics. Similarly, in North America, the respective market is led by medical, orthodontic, and firearms applications, and in Europe, automotive and consumer products are the leading applications.
-The automotive sector is the major consumer of metal injection molded parts. High strength, high complexity parts, which are used in engines, gearboxes, turbochargers, locking mechanisms, steering systems, and electronic systems, are the major automotive applications.
-The electronics industry is one of the major users of metal injection molded parts, accounting for more than 50% of parts sales in Asia-Pacific. Lightning connectors for apple devices, fiber-optic parts, cold plates, and heat sinks, and mobile phone parts are some of the major electronic applications of metal injection molding.
-The booming international smartphone market offers huge potential for metal injection molding because this process enables the use of materials, such as stainless steel, titanium, and zirconium oxide, which requires much lower material volumes and is significantly more cost-effective than machining.
-Metal injection molding has found a number of applications in the aerospace sector, including high-performance engine components, seatbelt parts, latches and fittings, spray nozzles, and vane adjustment levers.
-However, the majority of current MIM aerospace applications are likely to inevitably remain confidential. In recent years, there has been a renewed interest from the aerospace sector in using metal injection molding, to manufacture superalloy components for use in critical aero-engine applications.
-Stainless steels (316L, 410, 420, 17-4 PH, 13-8 PH), superalloys (Hastelloy X, Inconel 625, 713C and 718, Nimonic 90, and Udimet 700), and variants are the primary MIM materials for aerospace applications. Titanium alloys, TiAl and Ti-6Al-4V, are also used, and MIM’s ability to produce complex, high volume, high-performance titanium components offers attractive possibilities to reduce aircraft weight.
-All the aforementioned factors are likely to increase the demand for the market over the forecast period.
Asia-Pacific to Dominate the Market
- With nearly 40% of the global demand, Asia-Pacific is the most promising market for PIM materials. China accounts for over 60% of the demand for PIM in the region.
- China is also one of the major global markets for powder injection molding (PIM). Sustained demand for powder injection molding (PIM) is witnessed through its robust electronics, aerospace, and defense (A&D) sectors.
- The powder injection molding market in China benefited from the electronics industry (such as the mobile phone industry), which has seen the whole industry skyrocket since 2009.
- Moreover, China has the world’s largest electronics production base and offers a tough competition to existing upstream producers, such as South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan. Electronic products, such as smartphones, OLED TVs, tablets, etc., have the highest growth in the market in the consumer electronics segment.
- Despite a decrease in the production of the automotive industry, in 2018, the significant development of the medical and electronics industries resulted in significant growth of the Chinese powder injection molding (PIM) industry.
- In addition, the growing automotive, aerospace, and consumer goods industries in the countries, like China, Japan, India, and South Korea, further augmented the demand for metal injection molding, which, in turn, created the demand for powder injection molding.
- The large market size, coupled with the huge growth of Asia-Pacific, is instrumental in the expansion of the overall powder injection molding market.
The powder injection molding (PIM) market is fragmented and highly competitive in nature, with the presence of numerous players. The major companies include ARBURG, ARC Group Worldwide, GKN PLC, MPP, and Indo-US MIM Tec Pvt. Ltd, amongst others.
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