SmarTech Analysis, the leading provider of additive manufacturing market data and market analysis, has released a new market tracking and forecast report and database for ceramics additive manufacturing (AM) opportunities. The new Ceramics AM dataset and report focuses on the rapidly diversifying technical and traditional ceramics materials, confirming previous forecasts that see ceramics AM materials grow from a $20 million revenue opportunity in 2020, and growing to over $450 million by 2029, thus driving a $3.8 billion overall ceramics AM market segment within 10 years.
This will result in the overall ceramics AM industry – stemming from materials to include ceramics-specific AM hardware and applications – generating nearly $200 million in 2020, with a new inflection point expected in 2025 as this family of materials gain more widespread adoption in certain specific ceramic markets.
This latest report is part of a series of quick-access reports and databases released by SmarTech Analysis to provide periodically updated information on strategic and rapidly evolving AM segments. SmarTech has also recently issued similar reports on specific metals, such as aluminum steels, copper, nickel, and titanium, in additive manufacturing.
In this outlook and database, SmarTech provides and expanded analysis of ceramic materials, including the latest hardware and new technologies. The rapid evolution of production-ready are seen as a key driver for ceramics, which are ideal end-use materials.
Ceramics include an impressively wide and complex family of materials which show ideal features for additive manufacturing as well as significant processing challenges. Technical ceramics in particular feature advanced mechanical properties including very high strength as well as high temperature and chemical resistance. They are light materials which are already used in several sectors of advanced manufacturing, from aerospace to electronics, many of which are among the first adopters of AM technologies. Traditional ceramic materials such as sand and, newly included in this edition of the report, cement and glass are extremely versatile as well as affordable end-use materials, ideal for a wide range of consumer products as well as industrial molds and foundry cores.
In SmarTech’s currently forecasted timeline, ceramics AM adoption will experience an inflection point after 2025 as all major AM technologies that support ceramics production come to maturity and enjoy a sufficient presence in the market to support actual serial production. SmarTech is currently forecasting that this shift will be driven in part by the adoption of CIM- (ceramics injection molding) based additive manufacturing processes.
At this time, SmarTech sees ceramics as a long tail market, where companies can realize significant profits by selling low volumes of hard-to-find items to many customers, instead of only selling large volumes of a reduced number of popular items. AM can be instrumental.
Final parts value for both technical and traditional ceramic parts are expected to drive demand for hardware and materials for the medium to long term future. This trend indicates that in ceramics AM more than in any other material family, additively manufacturing a ceramic part increases the value of the material used to produce it by several orders of magnitude. This is true for both technical and traditional ceramic materials, although it is more evident in the technical ceramic segment and advanced ceramic applications.
The biggest challenge to address today remains the creation of market demand. Many companies that produce ceramic components, especially advanced ceramic components, could be benefiting significantly from subassemblies and DfAM (Design for Additive Manufacturing) ceramic parts but they still need to imagine, envision, design and develop the parts that will make ceramic AM processes and materials truly valuable.