ELMWOOD PARK, NJ - According to a just-completed study by the consulting firm Kusumgar, Nerlfi & Growney, the global consumption of radiation-cured coatings, inks and adhesives was 868 million pounds in 2012 worth $4,495 million. The largest outlet was coatings, with 78 percent of the volume and 58 percent of the value. Wood and overprints are the leading coating end uses, taking nearly three-quarters of the volume and 60 percent of the dollars. A variety of plastic applications such as vinyl flooring, consumer electronic housings, automotive headlamp lenses and housings, and CDs took 18 percent of the coating pounds and 24 percent of the dollars. Optical fibers and cables were the fourth-largest end use. The above four end uses represent 95 percent of the coating pounds and 93 percent of the dollars.

The ink industry consumed 18 percent of the radcure product volume and 35 percent of the value in 2012. If one were to combine inks with overprint coatings into a graphic arts category, it would represent 41 percent of the pounds and 48 percent of the dollars. The offset process took nearly one-half of the ink volume and 43 percent of the dollars. The fastest-growing radcure ink process is inkjet, which is forecast to more than double in volume by 2017. Inkjet was only 3 percent of the volume in 2012 but 11 percent of the value.

The adhesives industry was 4 percent of the radcure product volume in 2012 and 7 percent of the dollars. Product assembly adhesives for electronic, medical and other applications were only 13 percent of the adhesive pounds but are generally much higher in price than other end uses, and they garnered just over one-half of the dollars. Pressure sensitive, packaging laminating and DVD lamination are the large-volume adhesive applications.

The Asia-Pacific region leads in radcure product consumption with 35 percent of the global dollars in 2012. It is the fastest-growing region at 10 percent per year, and its share of the volume is projected to increase from 40 percent in 2012 to 47 percent in 2017. Europe and North America each represented 35 percent of the radcure dollars in 2012. Europe captured 31 percent of the global volume, and North America captured 26 percent. Both regions are forecast to grow at a modest 3-4 percent annual rate.

Raw material consumption for radcure products was $2.3 billion in 2012. Acrylate oligomers and monomers are the leading material, comprising about three-quarters of the material volume and dollars. A variety of other resins are employed in radcure products and were 10 percent of the pounds and 8 percent of the dollars. Photoinitiators are on average a higher-priced ingredient and were 4 percent of the pounds and 8 percent of the dollars. Other ingredients include additives, pigments and fillers.

The above information is contained in Kusumgar, Nerlfi & Growney’s just released study, “The Global Radiation-Cured Products Industry,” which is available through subscription. Interested parties are invited to contact the company by calling 201/773.0785 or by e-mail at nerlfikng@cs.com. Further information can be obtained at www.kusumgar-nerlfi-growney.com.