The global 3D printing powder market is projected to reach USD 636.9 Million by 2020, at a CAGR of 24.4% from 2015 to 2020. The growth of the market is primarily driven by the expiry of key patents for powder-based additive manufacturing in 2014 and increasing investments in research & development of powder-based technology.
3D printing or additive manufacturing is majorly used in the aerospace & defense industry, which requires high precision and quality products. 3D printing powders offer high compressibility and durability to manufactured products. These products are widely used in the industrial and commercial applications, due to their extensive properties. The aerospace & defense application segment is expected to contribute to the largest share in 2015. Automotive is expected to be the second-largest segment, followed by the medical and dental segments. With the reduction in technology costs, powder-based 3D printing will become accessible to other industries as well. This will lead to growth in other applications such as printing of consumer durable goods, accessories, and ornaments.
Based on type, the market has been classified into metal, plastic, ceramic, and others. Metal powders are mostly used in heavy engineering and fabrication works. The metal powder segment is expected to account for a major share of the market in 2015. Titanium powders (metal powders), due to their rigid structure and higher resistance to corrosion, are majorly used in aerospace & defense industry for manufacturing aircraft engine components. Metal powders are also used in automotive industry in tooling applications.
North America is expected to be the largest market for 3D printing powder market in 2015. Europe is one of the global manufacturing and commercial hub for powder metallurgy manufacturers. The manufacturers in this region have made large investment in the expansion of their capacities to meet the varied needs of the 3D printing market in the near future. The market in Row is expected to witness significant growth from 2015 to 2020. The increasing investments from technology startups and government agencies are projected drive the growth of the market in the coming years.
Some of the key players operating in global 3D printing powder market are Sandvik AB (Sweden), GKN Plc (U.S.), Carpenter Technology Corporation (U.S.), LPW Technology Ltd. (U.K.), Arcam AB (Sweden), and Erasteel Kloster AB (Sweden).
Powders used in additive manufacturing need to be atomized for use in high precision engineering applications. Supply of these specialized powders still remains a concern, which may restrain the growth runoff the market. Although powder-based 3D printers can serve in the most remote location in world, servicing these printers’ remains a challenge for powder-based 3D printer manufacturers.