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The global ruthenium market size was valued at USD 566.5 million in 2022 and is projected to grow from USD 582.4 million in 2023 to USD 819.2 million by 2030, exhibiting a CAGR of 5.0% during the forecast period.
Ruthenium (Ru) is one of the rarest metals, with atomic number 44 and is typically found in platinum ores. It is usually hard in form and high resistance to corrosion and oxidation. It is produced commercially as a byproduct of nickel and platinum refining. The demand for this metal is mainly associated with its application such as producing hard drive disks and electrical contacts, catalysts in multiple chemical reactions, and cancer agents for MRI imaging. Ruthenium holds the potential application for reaching sustainability goals as it is used in an automotive catalytic converter to mitigate emissions. The shift toward renewable energy is expected to increase consumption as it is used in producing hydrogen fuel cells and solar cells, which are important components to building a sustainable future.
Severally Impacted Automotive & Chemicals Industry Impeded the Market
COVID-19 has impacted the ruthenium market severely. The market players faced supply shortage, at least for the first half of 2020, due to trade restrictions in key industrial nations such as China and India. As a result, companies' manufacturing capacities were hampered and demand decreased drastically. Many governments imposed strict regulations for the shutdown of mining activities to reduce the spread of coronavirus, which caused a severe supply shortage of the metal. As a result, many companies either decreased their production capacity or shut down their production plants. As the supply chain returned to normal after the lifting of restrictions, the players operating in the industry sought opportunities to mitigate the impact of coronavirus on their annual performance. Governments of various countries are enacting supportive regulations, and attempts to re-establish economies will result in rising demand.
Increasing Demand from Electronics Market to Bolster the Product Consumption
Rapid innovations in the electrical industry, growing consumer preference to purchase electronics products, and rising research & development activities in electrochemical are some of the prominent factors that are increasing the product adoption in the electrical & electronic industry.
Ru is an efficient hardener for palladium and platinum. It is mainly alloyed with these metals to manufacture wear-resistant electrical contacts and thick-film resistors. The ongoing strong customer demand for electronic devices facilitates the adoption of its paste in chip resistors and other electrical components. Additionally, growth in data storage requirements further supports its adoption in hard disk applications.
Moreover, ruthenium oxide (RuO2) is widely utilized in electrode material for supercapacitors owing to its advantages of high reversibility, cyclability, compatibility with charge/discharge rates, reasonable conductivity, wide working potential window, and high theoretical capacitance value. Hence, such characteristics have increased consumption in the electrical and electronics industries and would contribute to creating opportunities for the ruthenium market growth during the forecast timeline.
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Increasing Demand in the Chemical Industry to Boost the Market Growth
The growing consumption in the chemical industry is expected to fuel market growth during the upcoming years. The characteristics of the product, such as improving wear and corrosion resistance coupled with fueling electrical surface ductility and conductivity to the substrate and enhancing the aesthetics of the underlying substrate, make it a sustainable choice in the chemical industry.
Furthermore, it has always been considered one of the most active versatile catalysts for several reactions of environmental and commercial importance. Also, with the help of RuO2, hydrogen sulfide could be split catalytically by light using an aqueous suspension of cadmium sulfide particles. The consumption of the metal is also increasing as a catalyst for acetic acid and ammonia production and as a de-NOx catalyst in the automotive industry to mitigate the emission.
Growing chemical industry expansion and rising technological advancement in chemicals to make the end-use product more effective and sustainable boost the product demand. Hence, the abovementioned factors are anticipated to aid the market growth during the forecast period.
Unavailability of Ruthenium and its Carcinogenic Nature to Restrict Market Growth
This metal is considered a rare element on Earth. Its unavailability causes a major low supply and, as a result, decreases its adoption in various end-use applications. Its high demand and low supply cause a demand-supply gap, which further affects the distribution channel. Additionally, due to its limited reserve, it is very expensive; as a result, several manufacturers are focusing on adopting substitute metals or products to further aid in cost reduction and smooth processing.
Moreover, the oxide of metal is toxic and its compounds are regarded as highly toxic and carcinogenic for humans. Direct exposure to its compounds can cause strong stains on the skin, and ingested metal is retained strongly in bones. Also, its exposure can cause severe health issues such as cancer, death, alertness, sedation, ptosis, and diarrhea.
Such factors restrict the adoption in various applications. Hence, this is anticipated to hamper the global market growth during the review period.
Dry Segment to Hold Larger Share due to Increasing Electronic Industry & Electrochemical Consumption
Based on type, the market is segmented into dry and liquid. The dry segment had the dominant market share in terms of value in 2022. The segment's growth is attributed to the increasing electronic industry & electrochemical consumption. As a result, its major consumption is increasing rapidly in chip resistors and electrical contacts. Moreover, the growing adoption of dry-form during industrial transportation fuels its consumption in many applications.
Whereas, there is growing use of liquid form in the chemical segment for coating anodes of electrochemical cells for chlorine manufacturing as it cannot be applied in the dry state. This is flourishing the growth of this segment. Also, several market players convert the product from dry to liquid forms through various processing to make it suitable for several applications.
Electrical and Electronics Segment to be Dominant owing to its Beneficial Characteristics
Based on application, the market is segmented into electrical and electronics, chemical, pharmaceutical, and others. The electrical and electronics segment had the highest market share. In this segment, Ru finds its major consumption in electrochemical and electrical applications such as supercapacitors and chip resistors. The growth is mainly attributed to its reversibility, high cyclability, wide working potential window, and high theoretical capacitance value characteristics. Due to the adoption of new technology by disc manufacturers that require ruthenium between the magnetic layers to store data, the computer hard drive industry experienced a substantial product demand.
The chemical segment is mainly driven by the catalytic converter, which plays a vital role in the automobile industry. It is used in catalytic converters due to resistance to poisoning, temperature stability, and proper functioning. The rising stringent emission standard to mitigate pollution has surged the demand. In the pharmaceutical industry, it is used to produce anti-inflammatory agents and anti-cancer drugs. The flourishing pharmaceutical industry is expected to increase the product demand.
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Asia Pacific held the largest ruthenium market share and stood at USD 264.7 million in 2022. It is consumed as a thin-film material for manufacturing magnetic read heads for Hard Disk Drives (HDDs). HDDs play a crucial role in the data storage market, and the demand for data storage is expected to surge the demand. The rising production of semiconductors in the region for the production of advanced semiconductors, such as semiconductor fabs, is strengthening the demand. It is extensively utilized in the chemical industry in the region due to its distinctive catalytic properties. In addition, Ru catalysts are utilized to produce several petrochemicals such as gasoline, ammonia, and hydrogen.
Asia Pacific Ruthenium Market Size, 2022 (USD Million)
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In North America, the high demand for the product is associated with rapid growth in the electronics industry. It is ideal for providing extreme hardness, which makes it an effective choice to be used as an alloy with other platinum group metals to make wear-resistant electrical contacts. Furthermore, there is growing consumption of Ru-based thin film microelectronics as the metals could be easily patterned.
In Europe, the demand is mainly driven by the catalytic converter, which plays a vital role in the automobile industry. It is used in catalytic converters due to resistance to poisoning, temperature stability, and proper functioning. The rising stringent emission standard to mitigate pollution has surged the demand in the region. The outbreak of war in Europe has escalated several trade constraints in the region, as Russia is one of the leading platinum-mining countries.
In Latin America, the market growth is attributed to the rising consumption of jewelry applications. The healthcare industry expansion in the Middle East & Africa will showcase significant market growth in the near future. This expansion is resulting in increased demand as an antitumor agent for cancer treatment in the healthcare industry.
Business Expansion is a Strategic Initiative Implemented by Companies
Key market players offer specific application products to cater to emerging markets. For instance, TANAKA Holdings Co., Ltd., through its innovative technologies and well-established production facility, the company is supplying products for applications such as vehicle exhaust emission control catalysts, vehicle sensors, crucibles, and fuel cell catalysts. In addition, companies such as KaiDa Technology Limited provide rare metal products and alloy products such as bars, tubes, foils, sheets, and plates. Whereas, most global players focus on sustainability, such as Anglo Americans, adhering to sustainability goals through sustainable mining plans by improving energy efficiency by 30%, reducing GHG emissions by 30%, and achieving a 50% reduction in freshwater abstraction in water-scarce areas. Companies, such as Johnson Matthey, focus on CO2 reduction in their operation and end-users through exhaustive product offerings in the form of ruthenium-based catalytic converters used in the automotive industry to mitigate the emission.
The research report provides detailed analysis and focuses on crucial aspects such as leading companies, types, applications, and products. Also, it provides quantitative data regarding volume and value, market analysis, research methodology for market data, and insights into market trends and highlights vital industry developments and competitive landscape. In addition to the abovementioned factors, the report encompasses various factors that have contributed to the market growth in recent years.
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CAGR of 5% from 2023 to 2030
Value (USD Million); Volume (Tons)
By Type, Application, and Geography
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 566.5 million in 2022, with a projected market size of USD 819.2 million by 2030.
In 2022, the market value stood at USD 566.5 million.
Growing at a CAGR of 5.0%, the market will exhibit rapid growth over the forecast period (2023-2030).
The electrical and electronics segment is expected to lead the market during the forecast period.
Increasing product demand from the chemical industry due to its characteristics is the key factor driving the market.
China held the highest share of the market in 2022.
Anglo-American, Johnson Matthey, Sibanye Stillwater, Impala Platinum, and Umicore are the leading players in the market.
Growing electrical & electronics demand is anticipated to boost the consumption of the product.
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