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The global carbon fibre market will be worth US$3.51 billion by 2020, and will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.1% between 2015 and 2020, according to a recent report from MarketsandMarkets.

The same report states that the global market for carbon fibre-reinforced plastics (CFRPs) will be worth $35.75 billion by 2020 and will grow at a similar (CAGR) of 9.9% between 2015 and 2020.

That this explosive growth is predicted will come as no surprise to regular readers of PMNet. MarketsandMarkets says that it will be fuelled by the increasing production capacities of Boeing and Airbus—the former of which has recently announced the first test flight of its 737 MAX.

Materials suppliers such as Hexcel have done well out of the aerospace industry’s switch from metals to composites, and are looking to capitalize on the second key driver for the CFRP industry, according to the report—the automotive industry’s need to produce more fuel efficient vehicles. Indeed, Hexcel’s prepregs are used extensively on BMW’s new 7 Series.  

The third major driver in the CFRP industry is the growing use of the material in the sporting goods, mass transportation, civil engineering, and wind energy markets.

It remains to be seen whether CFRPs can be tailored to the speed, cost, performance and manufacturing levels required for part production in huge volumes, but the future is certainly looking bright.

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