Hexa Research sees the global graphite electrode market reaching $5.68 billion by 2024 and future growth depends on its increasing use for steel production. According to the company’s recent report, Asia Pacific is the fastest growing market and is projected to continue dominating as a result of the presence of steel manufacturers and rigorous competition in the steel industry.
Rapid steel production and increasing spending on infrastructure in developing economies across the globe are expected to boost the demand for high-grade steel that is manufactured using electric arc furnaces (EAF). Adoption of advanced technology for steel production with the purpose of saving time and energy is expected to augment the demand for graphite electrodes.
The demand for electric arc furnace is expected to grow significantly as it offers several advantages such as production flexibility and low CO2 emission. It also saves raw material and energy due to its efficiency. The segment is likely to grow at a 4.1% CAGR over the projected period.
Graphite electrodes offer excellent thermal resistance and high current carrying capacity which makes them a suitable choice in electric arc furnaces (EAF) steel, refinement of steel and similar smelting processes. Besides EAF and LF, graphite electrodes are also used for electrolytic aluminum smelting and electrical discharge machining (EDM). The development of these non-steel applications is also anticipated to provide an opportunity for market growth over the forecast period.
Ultra-high power graphite electrode is expected to grow at the highest volume CAGR of 4.1% over the forecast period. Despite the high price of the product, the demand for these products is anticipated to be high in line with the rising demand for superior steel quality in various niche applications within the aerospace, automotive and electronics sectors.
A specially prepared flux pitch used in graphite electrodes helps to increase the durability and density of the final product. Ultra-high bending resistance, low electrical resistivity, and high-temperature resistance properties will increase the demand for UHP graphite electrode over the forecast period. In compliance with the driving factors, companies are focusing on mergers & acquisitions and capacity upgrades to expand their presence in global market. For instance, in January 2014, Kaifeng Carbon Co., Ltd.'s completed its Phase II expansion and can produce 50,000 tons of UHP graphite electrodes. For more details, browse the full research report with TOC.