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Float Glass Market

Float Glass Market: Information by Raw Material (Sand, Limestone, Soda Ash and Dolomite), Type (Clear, Tinted, Patterned, and Wired), Application (Automotive), and Region — Forecast till 2030

Published At : 16 Sep, 2022
Updated At : 18 Sep, 2022
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Market Snapshot
Base Year:
2021
Study Period:
2020-2030
CAGR:
5.12 %
Fastest Growing Market:
Europe
Largest Market:
Asia Pacific

The global float glass market size was valued at USD 58,453.0 million in 2021. It is expected to reach USD 87154.46 million by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 5.12% during the forecast period (2022–2030). The process of making float glass involves floating molten glass over a bed of molten metal, preferably tin. It is a glass of outstanding quality because it has a bright appearance, chemical inertness, excellent optical clarity, and consistent thickness. Float glass has mainly replaced regular glass sheets since the former variety is lacking in most of these features. Float glass is also made straightforwardly, making it an excellent substitute for regular glass. New products like heat-reflecting and soundproof glass have been made possible by float glass manufacturing technology advancements. As a result, float glass has increased demand in industries like architecture, automobiles, and solar energy. Therefore, the worldwide float glass market's rise is driven by a confluence of all of these factors working together.

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Market Dynamics

Global Float Glass Market Drivers

Rising Demand from the Construction Industry

Solar glass is a building-integrated photovoltaic to produce energy more effectively. It is intended to take the place of common building materials in areas like roofs, skylights, facades, and windows. Solar glass is the best cover glass for photovoltaic cells because it prevents damage while promoting visible solid and near-infrared light transmission. The mirror may also be given anti-reflective coatings, allowing for even more transmitting. Compared to standard glass, or float glass, solar glass only permits a small amount of heat to pass. It is possible to implement it in a variety of different ways within a building, whether the property in question is residential real estate, commercial structures like business centers or shopping centers, or both. In addition to this, it can be utilized for the achievement of both internal and external purposes.

Use in Automotive Industry

All types of glass used in automobiles are collectively referred to as "automotive glass" in this context. It is a heated and chemically treated variety of processed float glass. This toughening process makes the glass more robust and challenging, enabling it to withstand external stress. The glass for automatic windshields is made using the float glass method. The surface of the glass is subjected to compressive force as it is immediately cooled, while the body of the glass is subjected to internal tension. Chemically and thermally speaking, this makes the glass heavier than regular glass. Float glass is stronger and more tensile stress resistant than glass of the same thickness.

Global Float Glass Market Restraints

Decline in Automotive Production

According to the European Automobile Manufacturers' Association (ACEA), the number of passenger cars registered in the European Union will decrease by 25% by 2020, from 12.8 million to just 9.6 million units. The Oxford Economics forecast predicts that the European automotive industry will continue to be weak in 2021, with vehicle production in the European Union and the United Kingdom declining by more than 10% in 2021 compared to 2019. This decline in automotive production can hamper the float glass market growth during the forecast period.

Global Float Glass Market Opportunities

Growing Applications for Interior Design and Infrastructure

Toughened glass is used for more oversized windows in residences, while float glass is used for smaller windows. Float glass is used in windows for aesthetic and practical reasons, allowing occupants to see outside while letting in light. Float glass is becoming more prevalent in the construction sector. It enables architects to create spaces that look and feel like the outside while protecting occupants from the elements on the inside (except the sun). Float glass is used in many construction projects, from commercial to infrastructure to interior design. The growing use of float glass in the building sector for windows, façades, doors, interior partitions, railings, shop fronts, and other building components presents a potential opportunity for float glass. It is likely to increase demand for float glass on a global scale.

Segmental Analysis

The global float glass market is segmented by raw material, type, and application.

By Raw Materials Analysis

Based on raw materials, the global market is bifurcated into the sand, limestone, soda ash, and dolomite.

Sand is essential for manufacturing float glass since it is the primary source of silicon dioxide (SiO2), a material needed to make glass. In order to make higher-quality float glass, the sand composition must contain a high proportion of silica (above 95%) and be highly pure chemically. The quality of the raw materials is essential in the creation of float glass since it affects the critical properties of the completed product, such as clarity, power, and durability. This results in a high sand requirement for the production of float glass.

One of the key ingredients in the production of float glass is limestone. Limestone's primary purpose is to introduce calcium oxide, which is crucial for increasing glass's chemical resistance and durability. Additionally, it serves as a stabilizing agent in float glass production. Limestone is required twice in making glass: once to manufacture sodium carbonate and once as a component of the batch that will be melted. Low iron and moisture content are features of limestone material. As a result, many producers of float glass choose limestone as one of the necessary ingredients, which tends to raise the amount of limestone used in float glass production worldwide.

By Type Analysis

Based on type, the global market is bifurcated into clear, tinted, patterned, and wired.

The clear segment is the highest contributor to the market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.77% during the forecast period. Clear float glass has superior consistency, outstanding surface finishing, flatness, uniform thickness, high optical quality, and a bright appearance compared to other float glasses. Heat processing can also temper clear float glass without affecting its properties. Glass is heated to a molten state and then passed through a tweel, a tin bath, and a lehr to create clear float glass. Gravity and surface tension work together to produce flat and smooth surfaces on both sides as the object floats through the molten tin. Clear float glass is used extensively in various products, including furniture, doors, mirrors, windows, and automobile windshields. The float process has resulted in a significant improvement in flat glass quality. In developed nations, floated glass has nearly wholly replaced sheet glass.

Metal oxides and sand are combined in a hot furnace to create tinted float glass (silicon dioxide). The market's most widely used tinted glasses are grey and bronze, but green and blue tinted glasses are also offered depending on demand. Tinted float glass is found in various products, including furniture, tabletop glass, windows, doors, and automobiles. Tinted glass is frequently used in doors and windows to block out the sun and heat because it transmits much less light and heat than transparent glass. Due to its high durability and water and scratch resistance qualities, tinted float glass is used more frequently in residential and commercial buildings, which fuels the market's expansion.

By Application Analysis

Based on application, the global market is bifurcated into building and construction, automotive, and solar glass.

The building and construction segment owns the highest market share and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.59% during the forecast period. Float glass is primarily used in windows in building and construction applications for both functional and aesthetic reasons, providing customers with clear views out of the window while also shielding them from the elements like UV rays. Other significant factors that have significantly boosted the growth of infrastructure and construction activities globally include the expanding urban population and the rise in global disposable income. The demand for float glass, which typically drives the market’s growth, is directly related to the expansion of construction and infrastructure development.

Solar panels, solar thermal collectors, and solar mirrors for concentrated solar power make up the solar energy system. Glass is used in solar panels as part of the solar energy conversion process. Depending on the type of glass, the cells are shielded from the elements, and their capacity to produce energy is improved. For example, extra-clear float glass enhances sunlight transmission to photovoltaic cells. As the number of projects increased significantly, most solar panel manufacturers restarted their production lines to meet the current demand. The production of solar energy components is anticipated to grow, increasing the demand for float glass globally. The need for solar details is expected to be driven by the growing solar energy development in developing nations to reduce carbon emissions, which could increase float glass consumption globally.

Regional Analysis

Asia-Pacific Dominates the Global Market

By region, the global float glass market is segmented into Asia-Pacific, North America, Europe, South America, and the Middle East and Africa.

Float Glass Market Regional Analysis

Regional Growth Insights Request Sample Pages

Asia-Pacific is the largest shareholder of the global float glass market and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 6.05% during the forecast period. China has the largest GDP in the Asia-Pacific region. Despite trade disruptions brought on by its trade war with the United States, the country's GDP grew by about 6.1% in 2019. China is the world's largest producer of float glass, with a market share greater than fifty percent. Many Chinese manufacturers aim to produce goods that adhere to Western production and environmental standards. The country's demand for float glass is significantly increasing, primarily due to applications in building and construction. The construction sector continued to support the country's economic growth even as the US-China trade war negatively impacted performance in other areas, such as the car industry.

Europe is expected to grow at a CAGR of 4.17% during the forecast period. The economy of Germany is the largest one in all of Europe and the fifth largest in the entire world. In 2019, the expansion rate of the German economy was 0.6%, which was the lowest rate of growth seen in the preceding six years. The construction industry dominates the country's demand for float glass. The country's construction industry has been expanding slowly due to the rise in new residential construction activities. When compared to the total completions in 2018, which were 300,000, industry experts estimate that the completion of the construction of new homes will be around 315,000 in 2019. The country's rising immigration rate has boosted the demand for new residential construction.

In North America, the world's largest and most potent economy is that of the United States. The total installed solar power capacity in the nation was predicted to rise by 47% in 2020, with nearly 20 GW of new installations anticipated by the end of the year, according to a report published by the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). By the end of the forecast period, installed solar capacity is anticipated to double, with annual installations estimated to reach 20.4 GW in 2021. This is expected to be a significant window of opportunity for the solar panel industry, which will translate into a rise in demand for float glass in the nation over the forecast period.

Brazil is the largest economy in South America and the ninth-largest economy globally in terms of GDP. As part of the housing program Minha Casa, Minha Vida, the government invested USD 19 billion in 2018 to construct more than 650,000 thousand homes throughout the nation. The building of houses is anticipated to continue in the coming years, with an increase in investment over upcoming years, which is expected to meet the country's strict housing needs. Latin America's largest automotive market is in Brazil. The country's automotive industry picked up the pace after experiencing a decline in 2016, recording growth rates of 25.2%, 5.2%, and 2.2% in 2017, 2018, and 2019, respectively. These factors are anticipated to boost the growth of the float glass market during the forecast period.

Competitive Analysis of the Global Float Glass Market

List of key global float glass market suppliers profiled

  • AGC Inc.
  • BG Float Glass Company Limited
  • Cardinal Glass Industries Inc.
  • China Glass Holdings Limited
  • China Luoyang Float Glass Group Co. Ltd
  • Guardian Glass LLC
  • KIBING Group
  • Nippon Sheet Glass (NSG) Co. Ltd
  • Phoenicia
  • Press Glass SA
  • Promat UK Limited
  • PT Mulia Industrindo Tbk
  • Saint-Gobain
  • Schott AG
  • Şişecam Group
  • Taiwan Glass Ind. Corp.
  • Xinyi Glass Holdings Limited.

Recent Developments

  • September 2022- The "AGC Sustainability Data Book 2022" was published by AGC, a leading producer of glass, chemicals, and high-tech materials worldwide.
  • August 2022- Glass-flake effects pigments from the METASHINE Aurora Series produced a beautiful, aurora-like luminosity. NSG used optical brightening materials that were specially formulated for Point Makeup Cosmetics.

Global Float Glass Market: Segmentation

By Raw Materials

  • Sand
  • Limestone
  • Soda Ash
  • Dolomite
  • Other

By Types

  • Clear
  • Tinted
  • Patterned
  • Wired
  • Extra Clear/ Low Ferrous Floated Glass

By Applications

  • Building and Construction
  • Automotive
  • Solar Glass
  • Other Applications

By Regions

  • Asia-Pacific
  • North America
  • Europe
  • South America
  • The Middle East and Africa
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