The global market for graphene continues to grow with weekly technology and production breakthroughs, new investment and public listings of graphene producers. There are now over 125 companies either producing graphene or developing applications. Driven by demand from markets where advanced materials are required, graphene promises to outstrip all current nanomaterials, especially in consumer electronics and energy storage applications. Other markets graphene will impact include aerospace, automotive, coatings and paints, communications, 3D printing, filtration, sensors, solar, oil, and lubricants.
However, few graphene products have reached the market as yet and these mainly incorporate additives to enhance toughness and flexibility. Current products include smartphone touchscreens (Samsung, Wuxi), tennis rackets (Head), battery straps (Vorbeck) and oil-drilling muds (Graphene Nanochem). Numerous graphene enhanced touchscreen products will hit the market in 2015.
Currently there is an oversupply situation in the graphene market especially for low quality graphene. Demand for graphene is still relatively small. Over-supply will increase with the increased production capacities in China. Most current sales of graphene are nanoplatelets/powders for conductive inks and polymers.
A number of companies have developed graphene-based 3-D printing materials in the past 12 months, including Graphene Technologies, Grafoid, Graphene 3D Labs, AGT, Kibaran and Qingdao Unique Products. Credit Suisse forecasts that global 3D printing market revenues will reach almost $12 billion by 2020; the market was worth approximtely $2 billion in 2012.
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