The North American market for advanced and specialty glasses reached $2.3 billion in 2002.
This market is expected to grow at an average annual growth rate (AAGR) of 7.8% per year to reach $3.3 billion by 2007.
The global market was estimated at $8.5 billion in 2002, and is expected to grow at an AAGR of 8.3% to $12.6 billion in 2007.
The largest market is in electronics displays that in North America, was valued at $1.3 billion in 2002 and is expected to reach almost $2 billion by 2007.
Optical fibers and other applications make up the second largest market.
Advanced and specialty glasses play important roles in several industries. In the last several years, these materials have continued to find new applications in the areas of telecommunications, electronics and biomedical. Glass compositions and processing techniques continue to evolve to meet the increasing number of applications. Some of the glass compositions have distinctive properties that make them the most preferred materials for certain applications such as optical fibers, electronic displays, biocompatible implants, dental posterior materials and high-performance composites.
A number of ceramic processes successfully have been applied in glass processing to make advanced glasses. These include sintering of premelted and pulverized or chemically treated glasses, sol-gel technology and vapor phase deposition. Glass-ceramics with complicated shapes can be produced by the sintering of glass powders similar to a ceramic sintering process and then applying additional heat treating to form ceramic crystals. Novel processes continue to be developed.
The emergence of these advanced glasses has significantly changed several major industries, including telecommunications where fiber-optic cables revolutionized the technology of transmitting information. Other areas where advanced and specialty glasses and glass ceramics find increasing use are electronics in applications such as displays, substrates for packaging and data storage, and photoblanks for lithography.
High-performance glass and glass-ceramics also are being used as reinforcements or matrices for advanced composites for structural and aerospace materials. Because some advanced glasses and glass ceramics are biocompatible they can be used as implants and dental posterior materials. Glass beads also are being used in radiation therapy to treat certain kinds of cancer. Another important application is glass substrates for DNA analysis.
In 1996, BCC conducted a study with the same title. This updated report report_highlightss the many new developments that since have taken place. A number of the market segments have matured, while others are growing at various rates, while some others are declining. Also in recent years, the telecommunications industry has shrunk due to overcapacity and a slow economy. These technological and developments created a need to update the technological and issues, trends in manufacturing, markets and foreign competition.
This updated report:
- Provides an overview of advanced and specialty glass materials, their production technologies and applications
- Identifies the technological and issues related to the commercial production of advanced and specialty glasses
- Determines current size and future growth of North American markets for advanced and specialty glasses
- Identifies and profiles all North American producers and suppliers of advanced and specialty glasses as well as foreign producers and their competition.
Information for this report was collected by contacting persons active in the development, production and use of advanced glass materials, including government and academic sources active in research and development (R&D), and by referring to the technical literature. Key companies were interviewed by phone or e-mail.
Secondary data were obtained from trade publications and journals, such as the American Ceramic Society Bulletin and Journal, Glass International, and others. Government statistics from the Department of Commerce (Bureau of Census) were also used, as well as other market data and information from various Web sites.
Company profiles of the major producers and users are provided in Appendix I. Overseas companies also are identified for each market segment. In addition, a list of recent patents, as well as contact information for other overseas research organizations, is included in the appendices.