Nonwovens filter players are hitting a home run in the filtration arena with innovative technology and cost efficiencies
If you think the filtration market is still one of the best kept secrets of nonwovens producers, think again. Healthy annual growth rates and high margins have attracted attention and enticed a growing number of newcomers to enter the fray.As nonwovens continue to replace paper, wovens, glass and other types of media, the market is requiring better engineered, more innovative nonwovens, which allows nonwovens producers to get a better return on their investment.
While jumping into the filtration market may sound like a no brainer, grabbing a piece of the pie requires breakthrough innovation as well as the development of cutting-edge technology while maintaining cost efficiency.
The defensive nature of filtration has protected this market from the economic crisis, and newcomers and longstanding players alike are elbowing each other to develop new technology and applications that will enable them to meet customers¡¯ changing and complex needs.
While figures for all filtration sectors are hard to come by, INDA¡¯s inaugural report of the air filtration market predicts healthy growth.The report estimates the size of the North American (U.S. and Canada) air filtration market at the filter manufacturer"s level at $3.1 billion in 2007 with average annual growth of 2.4£¥ per year projected over a five-year period. INDA estimates the market will reach $3.5 billion in 2012.The filter segments that are expected to have the most rapid growth are industrial dust filtration"s bag house filter and cartridge filters, consumer/residential HVAC filters, HEPA/ULPA, disposable face masks and in-cabin automotive air filters. Including cellulosic media, the air filtration industry consumed 108,735 tons of filter media in 2007 with a value of $643 million. The demand for air filtration media will increase almost 14£¥ over the five year period through 2012, to 120,314 tons, equivalent to $754 million.
The transportation and heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) segments are the largest air filtration markets accounting for almost 80£¥ of the total air filtration volume of 108,735 tons in 2007.
One of the fastest growing significant markets is the consumer/residential HVAC market. While the total consumer/residential market is growing less than 1£¥ per year, the higher efficiency and higher profit margin filters are forecast to increase almost 8£¥ per year through 2012, according to INDA.
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