The global UD tapes market size is projected to grow from USD 151 million in 2020 to USD 256 million by 2025, at a CAGR of 11.1%. The increasing use of UD tapes in primary & secondary structures of commercial aircraft and the high demand for commercial aircraft are driving the UD tapes market in the aerospace industry.
Vehicle weight reduction and increased fuel efficiency are the major factors driving the use of UD tapes in the aerospace & defense industry. The greater strength-to-weight capability of UD tapes allows for more efficient structural and aerodynamic designs. UD tapes offer high fatigue tolerance and improve the strength of structural components, thereby enabling the manufacturing of bigger passenger windows and lower cabin altitude than conventional jetliners.
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The rise in air passenger traffic across the globe has contributed to an increase in aircraft production. The demand for new aircraft is expected to gradually shift from developed to emerging markets, such as APAC, South America, and Africa. In the commercial aerospace sector, North America is expected to witness the highest commercial aircraft deliveries, followed by Europe, APAC, South America, and the Middle East.
Carbon fiber-based UD tapes are mostly preferred in aircraft due to their high strength and stiffness. Unidirectional tapes can also be silt easily without losing its strength, which is not possible in the case of woven tapes and fabrics. The major applications of UD tapes are fixed wing fuselage, drive shafts, wing spars, wing skins, cargo floor panels, fan blades, tail booms, rib stiffeners, conduit, brackets, and others. There has been a paradigm shift in aircraft design by Boeing and Airbus, with composites now being considered for primary structures of all wide-bodied aircraft. Owing to the increasing use of composites in aircraft manufacturing, the demand for UD tapes is rapidly increasing.
North America is also the fastest-growing market and is projected to register the highest CAGR during the forecast period, owing to the increasing demand from end-use industries such as aerospace & defense, automotive, and sports & leisure. The useful properties offered by UD tapes, such as high strength, stiffness, and width tolerance, and high rigidity, make it an ideal material for use as reinforcement in the mentioned end-use industries.
Leading global companies are shifting their production facilities, establishing sales offices, and expanding their distribution channel to regions, such as China, India, and Southeast Asia, to ensure sustainable demand and increase their market share. The gradual shift of manufacturing facilities to countries having high demand and lower production cost is positively influencing the market growth.
Major players operating in the UD tapes market include Toray Industries, Inc. (Japan), SABIC (Saudi Arabia), Evonik Industries (Germany), Hexcel Corporation (US), SGL Group (Germany), Teijin Limited (Japan).
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