The world market for fabric filter systems and replacement elements (bags) will rise from $5.4 billion this year to over $7 billion in 2008, according to Mcilvaine Co.’s most recent online report, Fabric Filters and Elements: World Markets.
Much of the growth, according to the report, will be in Asia. Worries about the impact of a haze obscuring visibility at the new Disneyland in Hong Kong are indicative of the size of the problem in the region.
The growth in Asia is first of all a function of the growth in heavy industry. China has been the world’s leading cement producer since 1985 and currently controls 40% of the world’s cement production. Combined, the United States, India and Japan produce less than 20% of the world’s cement. China anticipates producing 660 million tons this year, 750 million tons by 2010, and 800 million tons by 2015.
While Asian markets slowly increasing production capacity, improvements in cement quality will occur more rapidly as older, less efficient facilities are closed or upgraded and newer, more modern facilities are built. Therefore, the market for fabric filters will expand not only as new facilities are constructed, but also as the older facilities are upgraded. For example, in South Korea, more stringent regulations for cement plants are resulting in a large fabric filter retrofit program.
China is also building more new coal-fired power plants than the rest of the world combined. Even though most new plants will use electrostatic precipitators, some will select fabric filters. This will result in hundreds of millions of dollars of revenues for producers of fabric filters and elements. India, South Korea, Indonesia, Japan and other Asian countries all have coal-fired projects under way.
Whereas incineration of garbage is viewed negatively in the United States, it is the preferred method of solid waste disposal in Asia. China is replacing many old, small incinerators with large new ones. Throughout Asia, fabric filters are becoming the control technology of choice for particulate emission capture from waste burning plants.
According to the report, the higher growth rate of the Asian iron and steel industry is also resulting in expanded markets for fabric filters. Foundry cupolas and basic oxygen furnaces are being fitted with expensive fabric filters capable of withstanding the high temperatures even after gases are cooled and conditioned.
The Asian market is rapidly being internationalized. European and American producers of filters, bags, roll goods, and fibers and resins are all building plants in the region.
Source: Mcilvaine Co.