Radiation-Curing Report

October 1, 2006
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Global consumption of radiation-cured products in 2005 was 270,000 metric tons (MT), with a value of $2.75 billion. Included in this number are products for coatings, inks and adhesives. According to the consulting firm Kusumgar, Nerlfi & Growney, a modest 6% annual rate of growth is forecast through 2010. Europe and North America are maturing regions that together account for nearly two-thirds of the dollar value. Asia is the second-largest consuming region in volume behind Europe, and is also the runner-up in dollars behind North America. A robust 9% annual rate of growth is forecast for Asian consumption, led by the surge in China. By 2010, the Asian region is projected to be the world's leading consumer in both volume and dollars. The table summarizes radcure product consumption by region.

Coatings is the largest outlet for radiation-cured products representing about three-quarters of the worldwide volume in 2005 and over one-half of the dollars. Wood (furniture and flooring) is the leading coating outlet in volume and dollars, with Europe consuming about 40% of the total volume. Paper overprints is the second largest coating application, with North America the leading outlet taking 40% of the total tonnage. Optical fibers, CDs, PVC flooring, release and other plastic substrates are other leading coating outlets.

Inks consumed just fewer than 20% of the radcure tons but nearly 40% of total money. Offset and screen inks combined represented over 90% of the volume. Radiation-cured inkjet inks were a miniscule portion of the weight, but 3% of the total. Inkjet inks are forecast to surge in usage in the upcoming years.

Adhesives comprised 5% of the global volume and 9% of total dollars. DVD lamination made up nearly 40% of the adhesive volume and dollars. CDs and DVDs are leading consumers of radiation-cured products, with over $300 MM of coatings, adhesives and inks being used to make these products in 2005. Numerous small volume assembly adhesive applications took 8% of the adhesive weight but over one-third of the dollars.

The above information is contained in Kusumgar, Nerlfi & Growney's study "Radiation-Cured Products, 2005-2010." The 600-page study is available through subscription. For more information, call (973) 439-0030 or e-mail nerlfikng@cs.com .

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