Silicone price February 2024 and outlook (see chart below)

  • North America:US$6.65/KG, -1.3% down
  • Europe:US$7.66/KG, -0.9% down
  • Northeast Asia:US$4.46/KG, 0.7% up
  • Southeast Asia:US$7.01/KG, -1.5% down
The chart below summarizes Silicone price trend per region, as well as the outlook. It takes a moment to load.

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Silicone price index 

This post is a summary of the Silicone price developments since 2017. This Silicone price index developments  are calculated from multiple separate sources of data to ensure statistical accuracy.

Further information on the Silicone price chart

 

What is silicone

Silicone is a synthetic polymer made up of silicon, oxygen, carbon, and hydrogen atoms. It is a highly versatile material that can be manufactured in a range of forms, including liquids, rubbers, resins, and gels.

Silicone has a number of desirable properties that make it useful in a variety of applications. It is flexible, durable, and resistant to heat and chemicals, making it an ideal material for use in industries such as construction, automotive, and electronics.

In the construction industry, silicone is used as a sealant to prevent water leakage and to insulate buildings. In the automotive industry, it is used as a lubricant and to seal engines and other components. In the electronics industry, it is used to insulate and protect sensitive electronic components from heat and moisture.

In addition to its industrial uses, silicone is also commonly used in consumer products such as cookware, bakeware, and personal care items like shampoos and conditioners.

 

What is silicone used for

Silicone is used for a wide range of applications across various industries due to its unique combination of properties such as heat resistance, chemical resistance, and flexibility. Some common uses of silicone include:

Construction

Silicone is used in construction for sealing, bonding, and glazing applications. It is used as a sealant for windows, doors, and roofs to prevent water infiltration, and it is also used as an adhesive for bonding materials together.

Automotive

Silicone is used in the automotive industry for gaskets, seals, and hoses. It is also used for coatings and adhesives in the assembly of vehicles.

Healthcare

Silicone is used in healthcare for medical devices such as catheters, implants, and prosthetics. It is biocompatible and has a low risk of causing allergic reactions, making it ideal for use in medical applications.

Personal care

Silicone is used in personal care products such as cosmetics, hair care products, and skin care products. It is used as a conditioning agent and emollient in these products.

Electronics

Silicone is used in the electronics industry for coatings, adhesives, and sealants. It is used to protect electronic components from moisture and dust and to provide electrical insulation.

Textiles

Silicone is used in textiles for waterproofing, stain resistance, and durability. It is used as a coating for fabrics to make them water-resistant and to improve their durability.

Overall, silicone is a versatile material that is used in a wide range of applications across various industries due to its unique properties.

 

What types of silicone are there

There are several types of silicone, each with its own unique properties and characteristics. Here are some of the most common types:

Liquid silicone

Liquid silicone is a form of silicone that is liquid at room temperature. It is often used in injection molding applications to produce complex shapes and parts with high precision and accuracy.

High-temperature vulcanizing (HTV) silicone

HTV silicone is a type of silicone that is cured at high temperatures to achieve a high level of hardness and durability. It is often used in applications that require high temperature resistance.

Room-temperature vulcanizing (RTV) silicone

RTV silicone is a type of silicone that cures at room temperature. It is often used as a sealant or adhesive and is known for its flexibility and resistance to water and other chemicals.

Silicone rubber

Silicone rubber is a type of silicone that is cured to produce a rubber-like material with high elasticity and durability. It is often used in applications that require high flexibility and resistance to heat and chemicals.

Silicone resin

Silicone resin is a type of silicone that is cured to produce a hard, durable material with high temperature resistance. It is often used in applications that require high strength and resistance to heat and chemicals.

SIlicone Oil

Silicone oil is a type of silicone. It is a clear, odorless, and inert fluid made up of linear siloxane polymers (i.e., chains of alternating silicon and oxygen atoms). Silicone oil is commonly used in a wide range of industrial and consumer applications due to its unique combination of properties, including high thermal stability, low surface tension, and excellent lubricity.

In industrial settings, silicone oil is used as a lubricant, coolant, and heat transfer fluid in machinery, electronics, and other equipment. In consumer products, it is used in cosmetics, personal care items, and medical devices. It is also used as a surfactant and defoamer in various industrial processes.

Silicone oil can be produced with different viscosities, ranging from very thin and runny to very thick and viscous. This allows it to be tailored to specific applications, such as as a damping fluid in shock absorbers or a release agent in molds.

Silicone foam

Silicone foam is a type of silicone that is cured to produce a foam-like material with low density and high flexibility. It is often used in applications that require high shock absorption or vibration damping.

 

What are the properties of silicone

industrial applications. Some of the key properties of silicone that make it a popular choice in industry include:

Heat resistance

Silicone has excellent heat resistance and can withstand high temperatures without melting or degrading. This makes it ideal for use in high-temperature applications such as insulation, gaskets, and seals.

Chemical resistance

Silicone is highly resistant to chemicals, acids, and solvents. It can withstand exposure to a wide range of chemicals without deteriorating or corroding, making it suitable for use in harsh environments.

Electrical insulation

Silicone has high dielectric strength and is an excellent electrical insulator. This makes it useful in electronics and electrical applications, where it is used as a coating, adhesive, and sealant.

Durability

Silicone is a highly durable material that can withstand weathering, aging, and mechanical stress without deteriorating. This makes it ideal for use in outdoor applications such as roofing, sealants, and coatings.

Flexibility

Silicone is a flexible material that can bend and stretch without breaking. This property makes it useful in applications where flexibility is required, such as in medical devices, automotive parts, and textiles.

Overall, the unique combination of properties that silicone possesses makes it a versatile and reliable material for a wide range of industrial applications.

 

How is silicone produced

Silicone is produced through a chemical process that begins with silicon, a naturally occurring element found in sand and quartz. The process involves several steps:

Production of silicon metal

Silicon metal is produced by heating silica, a compound of silicon and oxygen, with carbon in an electric arc furnace. This produces a high-purity silicon metal that is the starting material for making silicone.

Production of silicon tetrachloride

The silicon metal is then reacted with chlorine gas to produce silicon tetrachloride. This reaction is highly exothermic and produces a lot of heat.

Production of siloxanes

The silicon tetrachloride is then reacted with water to produce siloxanes, which are the basic building blocks of silicone. The reaction produces hydrochloric acid as a byproduct, which is captured and recycled.

Polymerization

The siloxanes are then polymerized to form long chains of silicone molecules. This process can be controlled to produce different types of silicone with different properties, such as liquid or solid forms.

Cross-linking

Finally, the silicone can be cross-linked to give it even more desirable properties, such as increased strength, elasticity, or heat resistance.

The resulting silicone material can then be further processed into a variety of forms, such as liquids, rubbers, resins, and gels, depending on the desired application.

 

What drives the cost of silicone

The cost of silicone can be driven by several factors, including the cost of raw materials, production and manufacturing costs, market demand and competition, and regulatory requirements.

Raw material costs

The cost of producing silicone is influenced by the cost of its raw materials, particularly the cost of high-purity silicon metal used as a starting material. The prices of these raw materials can be affected by supply and demand fluctuations, changes in mining and production costs, and geopolitical factors.

Production and manufacturing costs

The cost of producing silicone also includes costs associated with processing, curing, and cross-linking the material into its final form. These costs can be influenced by factors such as energy costs, labor costs, and capital investments in equipment and facilities.

Market demand and competition

The demand for silicone can also impact its cost, particularly in applications where there is high competition or limited supply. Prices may increase as demand increases, and vice versa.

Regulatory requirements

The cost of producing silicone can also be influenced by regulatory requirements related to environmental, health, and safety standards. Compliance with these requirements can increase production costs, which may be passed on to the consumer in the form of higher prices.

Overall, the cost of silicone can be influenced by a range of factors, and is subject to fluctuations in the global economy, supply and demand dynamics, and regulatory changes.

 

How big is the global silicone market

The global silicone market is quite large and has been growing steadily over the years. According to a report by MarketsandMarkets, the global silicone market size was valued at USD 14.0 billion in 2020, and is expected to reach USD 23.3 billion by 2025, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10.7% during the forecast period.

The demand for silicone is being driven by a wide range of applications across various industries such as automotive, construction, healthcare, personal care, and electronics. Silicone is used in these industries due to its unique combination of properties such as flexibility, durability, chemical and temperature resistance, and high dielectric strength.

Asia-Pacific is currently the largest market for silicone, accounting for the majority of global demand. This is due to the presence of large manufacturing industries in countries like China, India, Japan, and South Korea, where silicone is used in a variety of applications.

Overall, the global silicone market is expected to continue growing in the coming years, driven by the increasing demand for high-performance materials in various end-use industries.

According to https://oec.world/ :

Silicones, primary forms are the world’s 442nd most traded product.

In 2020, the top exporters of Silicones, primary forms were Germany ($1.55B), United States ($1.1B), China ($763M), Japan ($752M), and United Kingdom ($393M).

In 2020, the top importers of Silicones, primary forms were China ($826M), United States ($545M), South Korea ($407M), Germany ($326M), and Belgium ($315M).

 

Which countries produce the most silicone

The production of silicone is a global industry, with many countries around the world producing and exporting silicone materials. However, some of the largest producers of silicone are:

China

China is the largest producer of silicone, accounting for over 60% of global production. The country has a large number of silicon metal and silicone manufacturers, and the production is driven by the country’s large manufacturing sector.

United States

The US is the second-largest producer of silicone, with a significant amount of production taking place in the state of Michigan. The country is a major exporter of silicone materials, and the demand is driven by various industries such as construction, automotive, and healthcare.

Japan

Japan is another major producer of silicone, with a large number of manufacturers producing a range of silicone products. The country’s automotive and electronics industries are significant consumers of silicone materials.

Germany

Germany is a major producer of silicone materials, with a strong focus on the automotive and construction industries. The country has a large number of manufacturers of silicone sealants, adhesives, and coatings.

South Korea

South Korea is a significant producer of silicone, with many companies manufacturing a range of silicone products such as silicone rubber, sealants, and adhesives. The country’s electronics and automotive industries are major consumers of silicone materials.

Other countries such as India, Brazil, and Russia also have a growing silicone industry, driven by the demand from various end-use industries.

 

Further information

 

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