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Some recovery for flame retardants, study says

U.S. demand for flame retardants is expected to reverse its decline and is forecast to expand 2.7% per year to 950 million lb, valued at $900 million in 2013, according to a new report from The Freedonia Group. Flame retardants will see the most growth in key markets such as insulated wire and cable, and construction, with growth fueled by more stringent fire codes and flammability requirements.    

As the industry moves away from halogenated flame retardants, alumina trihydrate will continue to be the most widely used flame retardant type, accounting for 43% of total demand in 20133 due to its low cost, excellent performance, and widespread applications. The best growth is expected for phosphorus-based flame retardants, which are projected to increase 3.7% to 168 million lb, according to the report. Growth will be driven by non-halogenated phosphorous grades, which have a more benign environmental footprint than heavily regulated brominated compounds, the slowest-growing flame retardant type.
Construction products accounted for one-third of total flame retardant demand and will grow at an average pace to 313 million lb in 2013, driven by insulation and cushioning opportunities for flame retardants in foamed PU and PS. With automotive manufacturing recovering production levels, elevated temperatures in underhood applications, and increased use of lighter weight plastic materials in search of improved fuel efficiency, increased demand for flame retardants in the automotive market is expected. [email protected]

TAGS: Materials
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