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February 29, 2024

2024 Forecast: Top 10 Trends in the Materials and Chemicals Industries

This article offers a captivating glimpse into the future of a rapidly evolving industry. This year, we're witnessing a revolution in materials science and chemistry, with cutting-edge trends redefining everything from environmental sustainability to high-tech manufacturing. This concise and engaging overview unveils the top ten trends set to dominate the landscape, showcasing breakthroughs that are not just changing the industry but also the world as we know it. Join us in uncovering the future of materials and chemicals, where innovation meets practicality and science fiction becomes reality. The results come through SCOUT, MAPEGY’s Future Intelligence Platform, whose capabilities meticulously discover emerging technologies and decipher its ecosystems with cutting edge AI in 3 simple steps.

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Top 10 Materials & Chemicals Emerging Trends

Sorted by Signals, here are Top Trends according to SCOUT, our Future Intelligence platform.

1. Nanomaterials

Nanomaterials are a standout trend in 2024, propelled by their expanding role across various sectors. The market, valued at USD 12.42 billion in 2023, is expected to grow at a CAGR of 14.8%, reaching USD 32.76 billion by 2030 [source]. This growth stems from diverse applications in healthcare, electronics, and aerospace, with titanium nanoparticles and gold nanomaterials gaining prominence for their unique properties. Healthcare is a significant growth driver, with nanomaterials used in cancer treatment and diagnostics, while the aerospace sector benefits from their strength and lightweight features. Regionally, Asia Pacific leads market growth, with significant R&D investments fueling advancements. Key players like Strem Chemicals, Inc., and American Elements are focusing on innovation and expansion in specific nanomaterials applications [source].

2. Thermoplastics

Thermoplastics are emerging as a key trend, driven by their versatility and growing demand across various sectors. The market is experiencing robust growth: projected to increase from $19.33 billion in 2023 to $20.7 billion in 2024, with a CAGR of 7.1% [source]. Key drivers include the industry's focus on weight reduction, particularly in the automotive and aerospace sectors, and the push for sustainability and efficient resource utilization. The electric vehicle market is a significant catalyst, as thermoplastic composites are essential for manufacturing lightweight components.  Innovations in the sector, such as the introduction of low-friction, self-lubricating thermoplastic composite bearings, are reducing wear and tear in mechanical systems. Key market players include BASF, Evonik Industries, Solvay, SABIC, and Arkema, among others. These companies are involved in various strategies to strengthen their market presence, including technological advancements and market expansions [source].

3. Recycling (Waste)

In 2024, Recycling (Waste) in Materials & Chemicals is a crucial trend, propelled by advanced recycling technologies and an increasing sustainability focus. Advanced recycling, evolving but not yet fully scaled, can produce high-value polymers for specific applications like food packaging. The global chemical recycling market, integral to this trend, is expected to grow at a CAGR of 7.2% through 2032. This growth is driven by the urgent need to address the plastic waste crisis and achieve circular economy goals. Europe leads in regulatory initiatives, promoting recycling and sustainability. Advanced recycling, including pyrolysis and gasification, complements traditional mechanical recycling, offering environmental benefits and expanding recyclable plastics range. However, it faces challenges in technology maturation, infrastructure development, and ensuring economic viability [source] [source].

4. Conductive Polymer

The conductive polymers market is valued at over USD 3.5 billion as of 2022 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of more than 8% from 2023 to 2032. This growth is driven by the increasing demand for lightweight components and the ongoing expansion of the semiconductor and electronics industries. The global market is characterized by a range of applications, including capacitors, batteries, solar cells, electroluminescence, and printed circuit boards. The market is also witnessing advancements in product types like Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene (ABS), Polycarbonates, and Inherently Conductive Polymers (ICP). Key players include 3M, Solvay, SABIC, PolyOne Corporation, and Lehmann&Voss&Co, among others. These companies are adopting various strategies such as product innovation, partnerships, and investments in cutting-edge technology to strengthen their position in the market [source] [source].

5. Fuel Cell

The fuel cell market size is projected to reach USD 8.77 billion in 2024 and further expand to USD 36.98 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 27.1% during this period. This growth is attributed to the increasing demand for unconventional energy sources and advancements in fuel cell technologies. In terms of product segments, solid oxide fuel cells (SOFC) are expected to be the fastest-growing, due to their high-temperature operation which minimizes the need for expensive catalysts. Additionally, the stack component of fuel cells, responsible for the electrochemical conversion of fuel into electricity, accounted for the largest market share in 2023. Key players in the market include Ballard Power Systems, FuelCell Energy, Mitsubishi Power, Plug Power, and Cummins, among others. These companies are adopting various strategies like new product development, mergers & acquisitions, and joint ventures to maintain and expand their market share [source] [source].

6. Graphene

In 2024, the graphene market size is expected to be USD 260.53 million, with a forecast to reach USD 2,863.17 million by 2032, exhibiting a CAGR of 34.9% during this period [source]. Key factors include its use in the electronics & telecommunication sector, where it is utilized for unbreakable touchscreens, transistors, supercharged batteries, and other applications. Graphene's high mechanical strength, electron mobility, and superior thermal conductivity make it an ideal material for these uses. Graphene is also finding increasing applications in the medical field, particularly in drug delivery and treatment of severe diseases like cancer, due to its high surface area and low cytotoxicity. The graphene market is highly competitive, with key players focusing on strategies like improving product quality, automating production methods, and developing customized solutions. Notable companies in the market include NanoXplore, The Sixth Element (Changzhou) Materials Technology, NeoGraf, and Global Graphene Group [source].

7. Solid-State Battery

The solid-state battery market, valued at approximately USD 596.50 million in 2023, is projected to grow at a CAGR of 33.6% between 2024 and 2032, reaching around USD 3,331.09 million by 2032 [source]. Solid-state batteries are gaining popularity due to their compact, lightweight, and high-performance energy storage solutions, especially for portable electronic devices and wearables. They offer higher energy density, longer-lasting power, and enhanced safety compared to traditional lithium-ion batteries. The automotive industry is also integrating these batteries into small EVs and electric scooters, owing to their efficiency and space-saving properties. Key players in the market are investing in R&D to improve the performance and scalability of solid-state batteries. Efforts are focused on developing advanced materials, new manufacturing techniques, and optimizing battery designs. The major players include Toyota Motor, STMicroelectronics International, Ganfeng LiEnergy technology, Ilika Plc, Samsung SDI, and others [source].

8. Superalloys

The global superalloys market, valued at approximately USD 6.1 billion in 2023, is expected to grow to around USD 9.8 billion by 2032, with a CAGR of 5.14% during 2024-2032 [source]. Superalloys are known for their exceptional strength, high-temperature resistance, corrosion resistance, and surface stability, making them widely used across various industries. The aerospace sector is the primary consumer, using superalloys in aircraft engine components due to their ability to withstand extreme conditions. Power generation relies on superalloys for equipment like gas turbines and heat exchangers. Automotive and oil & gas industries also utilize superalloys for high-performance engines, exhaust systems, and exploration equipment. Advancements in manufacturing techniques, including additive manufacturing and powder metallurgy, are enhancing superalloy component production. Key players like Allegheny Technologies, AMG Superalloys, and Aperam S.A. are driving market evolution through collaborations, partnerships, and innovations [source].

9. Smart Materials

The Smart Materials market is undergoing significant growth, projected to escalate from USD 70.14 billion in 2021 to USD 251.20 billion by 2030, with a CAGR of 15.5% from 2022 to 2030. This market encompasses advanced materials capable of changing properties in response to various stimuli such as temperature, pressure, or magnetic fields. Key drivers include their increasing adoption in the automotive sector for developing intelligent vehicles and in healthcare for biomedical applications. Challenges include limited availability and environmental sensitivity, impacting costs and properties. North America leads the market, driven by strong aerospace and defense industries, while the Asia Pacific region shows significant growth due to advancements in electronics and automobile industries. Key players include TDK Corporation, CTS Corporation, Channel Technologies, Cerametrics, and more, are focusing on innovation and strategic collaborations to maintain market dominance [source][source].

10. Advanced Composite Materials

The Advanced Composite Materials market is witnessing rapid growth and is expected to reach a market size of USD 31.73 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 9.2%. This expansion is driven by the increasing demand in the aerospace, defense, and sporting goods industries, where these materials are valued for their high strength and stiffness. The automotive and transportation sector is a significant contributor to this growth, utilizing advanced composites for lightweight, strong components. The Asia Pacific region leads the market, bolstered by developments in key industries across China, India, and Japan, while North America also shows considerable demand, especially in the automotive sector. Key market players like Teijin Ltd., Toray Industries, Inc., and others are focusing on innovation and partnerships to maintain their competitive edge [source].


The article highlights a future where innovation and sustainability intersect in exciting ways. Key trends like nanomaterials, thermoplastics, smart materials, and advanced composites are driving a new wave of advancements. The push towards recycling, combined with the growth in fields like conductive polymers, fuel cells, graphene, solid-state batteries, and superalloys, demonstrates an industry evolving rapidly to meet the challenges of tomorrow. These trends not only signify technological progress but also a commitment to a more sustainable and efficient world. Looking ahead, the materials and chemicals industry stands at the forefront of shaping a brighter, more innovative future.

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Integrating Technology Intelligence with Materials & Chemicals Trends

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