Flotation in the mining industry is a very important process that is basically done to separate the minerals from ores. Flotation process is carried out by using chemicals that alter the surface properties of the minerals. This process is highly beneficial for ore benefaction as it can collect very small particles very easily, even less than 100 μm. Mining flotation chemicals are useful for floating out minerals from the rock surface during the process. The chemicals can be classified into frothers, activators, collectors, and flocculants. These chemicals help in aeration of minerals in water which serves the formation of bubbles to bind with minerals and drift them. The mining sector use these chemicals in all stages of the production process in order to improve productivity and the efficiency of the mining process such as recovery and extraction of minerals ores.
The global mining floatation chemicals market was estimated to be valued more than US$ 9.5 billion in terms of revenue in 2018 and is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 4.7% during the forecast period (2019 to 2027).
The growing construction industry as minerals such as copper and iron ore are widely used in the development of infrastructure is propelling the market growth of mining flotation chemicals. Copper and iron are mainly used as a raw material in the production of cables and wires which are used in the construction industry. According to PwC, Global Construction 2030 - which forecasts that the volume of construction output will grow by 85% to US$15.5 trillion worldwide by 2030, with three countries, China, US and India, leading the way and accounting for 57% of all global growth.
The rising focus of manufacturers to develop sustainable chemicals for replacing harmful chemicals such as xanthates is projected to offer potential growth opportunities to the market of mining flotation chemicals. For instance, in February 2020, Outotec and Neste have introduced Neste MY Renewable Isoalkane as a 100% bio-based diluent for extracting metals in hydrometallurgical processes. Hence, this is expected to propel the market growth.
A concern associated with the water and power scarcity is expected to restrict the market growth of mining flotation chemicals. Water and electricity is an important aspect of the mining industry and this is expected to pose a challenge for the market. According to the Coherent Market Insights analysis, Chile mining industry accounts for around 20% of total electricity consumption and this the requirement is expected to rise by 68% by the end of 2020 South Africa mining industry accounts for 6% of the total energy consumed by the country. Mining flotation chemicals market growth is likely to be hampered by the expected increase in energy prices in this region.
On the basis of ore type, sulphide ore dominated the global mining floatation chemicals market in 2018 with around 70% of market share in terms of revenue, followed by non-sulphide.
The growing trend of developing new collectors for the beneficiation of low-grade phosphate ores is expected to propel the market growth of mining flotation chemicals. Many manufacturers are developing anionic collectors to offer efficiency in recoveries in the flotation process of low-grade ores that contain low silica, calcium oxide, magnesium oxide ferric oxide, and aluminum oxide contaminants
The rising number of partnerships and agreements by major players to expand their market presence is expected to foster market growth over the forecast period. For instance, in September 2019, Clariant Mining Solutions and ChemQuest enter into partnership increase metallurgical efficiencies for the beneficiation of mineral wealth in Africa. The agreement concentrates on providing solution-based specialty chemicals that address challenges experienced specifically in the copper, platinum, gold, and base metal mining sector.
Key players operating in the mining floating market are BASF SE, Huntsman Corporation Air Products and Chemicals, Inc., Cytec Industries Inc., Cheminova A/S, Clariant AG, Chevron Phillips Chemical Company, Kemira Oyj, Nasaco International LLC, and Beijing Hengju Chemical Industry Co. Ltd.
Few Recent Developments
By Ore Type
By Chemical Type
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