Optical Ceramics Market: Innumerable Properties of Sapphire Contribute to Its Wide Use in Ceramics

The market size of optical ceramics is estimated at USD 148 million in 2018 and is projected to reach USD 297 million by 2023, at a CAGR of 15%, between 2018 and 2023. The global optical ceramics market is driven by the increasing defense expenditure on advanced materials and technologies. Optical ceramics are used as a substitute for glass, metals, and plastics, which is boosting the market.

Optical ceramics are defined as transparent or translucent polycrystalline ceramics that are used in optical applications. They derive their effectiveness from their reaction to infrared, optical, and ultraviolet light. The use of optical ceramics, as an essential material in the production of optical components, in optoelectronics, and aerospace and defense & security industries is increasing significantly.

The key players in the optical ceramics market include Surmet Corporation (US), CeramTec (Germany), II-VI Optical Systems (US), Schott AG (Germany), CeraNova (US), CoorsTek (US), Kyocera (Japan), Saint- Gobain (France), Konoshima Chemicals (Japan), and Murata Manufacturing (Japan). The optical ceramics market report analyzes the key growth strategies adopted by the leading market players between 2013 and 2019, which include expansion, new product launch, and merger & acquisition.

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Surmet Corporation is a provider of advanced material solutions and emphasizes on next-generation machines, systems, and applications. The company is a major supplier of transparent armor and optical ceramic components to the defense & aerospace industry. The transparent ceramics manufactured by the company are used across various applications such as missile domes, reconnaissance windows, and laser windows. The company has managed to gain a niche in the advanced ceramics market by providing various transparent ceramic materials. Surmet Corporation was awarded Corporate Technical Achievement Award (CTAA) by The American Ceramic Society’s (ACerS) for the development and commercialization of ALON Transparent Optical Ceramics in June 2013. The company successfully demonstrated that large, transparent, and non-oxide polycrystalline ceramics could be produced for high-performance multi-functional applications.

CeramTec is a portfolio company of Cinven, a European private equity firm since 2013. It is a manufacturer and supplier of a wide range of ceramics. It has an extensive portfolio of over 10,000 different products of engineered ceramic materials. The advanced ceramic products offered by the company are used across industries such as automotive, electronics, mechanical, and medical. The company aims at expanding into lucrative market segments, such as lighting technology, sensor technology, and mobility, in addition to its presence in the medical application segment. CeramTec makes extensive use of its R&D activities to innovate safe and cost-effective methods of manufacturing advanced ceramics. The company has a strong presence in the European region and is increasing its presence in APAC. It has adopted organic as well as inorganic growth strategies to maintain its foothold in the global optical ceramics market. For instance, in 2017, CeramTec agreed on the acquisition of the UK Electro-Ceramics business, including two of its manufacturing sites at Ruabon and Southampton, from Morgan Advanced Materials plc (UK). This acquisition helped the company explore new markets, new application areas, and new developments in optical ceramics.

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