On a value basis, conductive plastics have an estimated value of $700 million in 2005, while ICP’s amount to under $60 million. However, ICPs could reach close to $150 million by 2011, while conductive plastics should top the one billion dollar plateau.
All electroactive polymers are driven by the ever-increasing demands of electronic devices and the explosive growth of relatively new products such as cellular phones and digital cameras.
Organic transistors made from polymers rather than silicon, and the potential movement of light emitting diodes into large displays are the main drivers for ICPs and low dielectric polymers.
Electroactive polymers are at the forefront of several new, important and far-reaching technologies. They require a detailed and up-to-date assessment of their impact on the technology-driven electronics industry.
Electroactive polymers comprise several groups of materials namely a) conductive plastics, which are made from traditional thermoplastics containing fillers that render them conductive, b) inherently conductive polymers (ICPs), which conduct electricity on their own, after being “doped”, c) inherently dissipative polymer (IDPs), which have been modified to become conductive, and d) other polymers with low dielectric constants that have potential in microelectronic applications.
Although conductive plastics mimic the conductivity of metals, there are generally compromises that have to be made in terms of the ability to process them, their performance or the economics of producing them. This has driven the search for alternative “conductive plastics” such as ICPs and IDPs. Low dielectric polymer development is still in its infancy and is primarily targeted for flexible electronics.
This timely report analyzes the market for electroactive polymers, and develops a reasonable scenario for applying these materials, most of which are still in the early stages of their development. The study will be invaluable therefore to executives in the plastics industry and to those industries looking to utilize these materials in their own product development.
SCOPE OF STUDY
The study encompasses:
- Industry trends, R&D and patent activity
- ICPs, IDPs, and conductively filled polymers
- Other low dielectric polymer-based materials
- Applications, technologies, types, developments
- Market estimates and forecasts
- Company profiles.
Several procedures were used to gather information and included the following:
- A complete literature review on products and technology;
- A patent search;
- Contacts with key personnel, including producers, suppliers and end users; and
- Detailed analyses.