Global inorganic base market is expected to grow due to its increasing demand in chemical, industrial, and laboratory applications. These base are derived from inorganic or mineral compounds and play an essential role in chemical reactions for laboratory experiments. Also known as salts post neutralization reaction; these are widely used by chemists, most commonly in the form of calcium carbonate, sodium carbonate and calcium hydroxide. These products generally have characteristics contrasting inorganic acids, such as high pH levels (above 7), slimy & soapy texture, bitter taste and others.
Inorganic base generally react with acids to create salt and water, elevating the hydroxide concentration in aqueous solutions, and can be found in several common consumer products such as bleaches, toothpastes and laundry detergents. Increasing applications in chemical industry which include pigments, additives, salts, oxidizing agents, halogens, catalysts as well as other industrial applications such as surfactants, coatings, fuel and others are expected to drive global demand. Inorganic base are also increasingly being applied in the fields of medicine and agriculture (fertilizers). Outstanding product properties such as heat & light stability, migration, and weather resistance are expected to further strengthen its demand in construction materials. Along with the above mentioned factors, increasing scope in electroplating, alcohol distillation, dye & precision casting, and papermaking applications is expected to provide growth opportunities to the global industry.
Inorganic base can be classified on the basis of product characteristics into soluble or insoluble (strong or weak). Strong base such as ammonium hydroxide, a solution of ammonia in water, are used in various household, industrial and laboratory applications. This product was traditionally used to darken and stain wooden furniture, by reacting tannic acid and iron salts in wood. Ammonium hydroxide is gaining acceptance as an acidity regulator or leavening agent in foods. It is recognized by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as a generally recognized as safe (GRAS) product. Enhanced pH control also allows this product to be utilized as an antimicrobial agent, leading to higher application in the tobacco industry.
Aqueous ammonia solution can also serve as a complexant and base, since it gives a deep blue color on reaction with copper solution. The solution has the ability to dissolve silver oxide residues. Other compounds such as calcium hydroxide are gaining importance in niche applications. These include roles as a major ingredient in whitewash, plaster and mortar, filler for root canals in endodontic surgeries and for road construction to improve the quality of plastic substrate soils. The product is also used as an additive to sea water to reduce atmospheric carbon-dioxide and mitigate greenhouse effects.
Regionally, highest inorganic base demand arises from Asia Pacific, mostly owing to increasing industrial applications in countries such as India, Japan and Southeast Asia. China is the largest producer and consumer for inorganic base in this region. Asia Pacific is followed by Europe in terms of market demand volume and revenue. North America stands third in overall global inorganic base demand, with majority of consumption driven by the U.S. Middle East & Africa offers untapped market potential, which is urging companies to expand into this region. Central & South America presents opportunities for growth, with increasing consumption in Brazil. Rapid industrialization and increasing population in the region is expected to drive inorganic base demand in various consumable products such as toothpastes, bleaches and detergents along with industrial applications.
Global inorganic base industry is moderately consolidated with top five companies accounting for over 60% of the market share. Major inorganic base manufacturers and suppliers operating in the global industry include Basic Chemical Solutions LLC., Azko Nobel N.V., PVS Chemicals Inc., Sigma Aldrich, CDH Fine Chemicals, Loba Chemie and General Chemicals.
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