Polycarboxylate ethers (PCEs) are defined as polymers whose cellular structure is similar to the shape of a comb. They are made of methoxy-polyethylene glycol copolymer, a side chain which is implanted with a main chain called methacrylic acid copolymer. PCEs backbone are negatively charged allowing the adsorption on positively charged colloidal particles. This property of polycarboxylate ether helps achieve various advantages over conventional flow agents. Additionally, the PCE technology also allows target-oriented combination of different polymer structures. Polycarboxylate ethers has a very high propensity of water reduction, and it is also a very clear colored liquid. Hence, it is largely used as a pumping agent.
Polycarboxylate ether, is fundamentally a high range water reducer, polymerized by various types of organic polymers. It is a new generation admixture of concrete, which is eco-friendly and consists of a copolymer of carboxylic acid.
Rising construction activities coupled with infrastructure development is propelling the demand for polycarboxylate ethers. According to PwC, the global construction industry is estimated to expand by more than 6% in the next five years due to the rising demand for infrastructure. Growing emphasis on sustainable and stronger construction materials is also projected to boost the PCEs market, as it possesses high water reducing properties. The global concrete market is projected to register a significant growth of over 8% by 2020. Polycarboxylate ether, a major ingredient used in the manufacturing of concrete, is thereby projected to witness high demand from concrete industry. Easy availability and usage of the construction elements is accelerating its demand in the cement industry, which in turn is boosting the polycarboxylate ethers (PCEs) market. However, adverse health effects to humans is likely to hamper the market.
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Based on application, the market can be segmented into concrete, soap, and medicine. Extensive usage of soap for health and hygiene has driven the polycarboxylate ethers market. PCE has emerged as a major additive in soap that creates bubbles and repel without coalesce. Rising demand for soaps and hand washes for health and hygiene is estimated to boost demand for PCE during the forecast period. Rise in residential construction activities is anticipated to drive the need for cement and concrete. This, in turn, is expected to boost the polycarboxylate ethers market. The market is further segmented into grades; which includes 30%-40%, 40%-50%, 50%-60%, 98%, and 99%.
In terms of geography, the market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. Asia Pacific is anticipated to lead the global polycarboxylate ethers market, led by China and India. Increasing population fuels the need for commercial and residential infrastructure. PCE is used in construction material to provide longevity to buildings. Rising population in these countries is likely to positively impact growth for PCE in the region. Furthermore, the U.S. is also projected to be a major consumer of polycarboxylate ethers during the forecast period due to the increase in construction activities and rising trend of sustainable buildings in the country. The usage of ethers in construction materials is projected to be over 30% in the U.S. in the projected years, providing immense growth and expansion opportunities for polycarboxylate ethers manufacturers. In terms of production, Germany is estimated to be a prominent manufacturer of polycarboxylate ether, as the country witnesses the presence of major chemical manufacturers.
Key players operating in the polycarboxylate ether market include Sika, Ruia Chemicals, Arkema, Rossari Biotech, Kashyap Industries, Choksey Pvt Ltd., Sakshi Chem Sciences Private Ltd. and Coatex.