Flow Chemistry Market Size, Share & Trend Report

Flow Chemistry Market Size, Share & Trend Analysis Report Analysis By Application (Pharmaceuticals, Chemicals, Academia & Research, Petrochemicals), By Reactor, And Segment Forecasts, 2018 - 2025

  • Published Date: Feb, 2018
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2015
  • Report ID: GVR-1-68038-711-7
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2014 - 2015
  • Number of Pages: 97

Industry Insights

The global flow chemistry market size was valued at USD 1,023.7 million in 2016, growing at a CAGR of 9.9% over the forecast period. Increasing penetration of the technology in pharmaceuticals sector is expected to be the major driving factor over the forecast period. It is considered as green technology due to its environment-friendly nature and superior properties compared to the batch production processes.

High safety level offered by the technology while performing gas-based reactions is expected to augment the demand over the forecast period. In addition, advantageous properties including low maintenance, reduced reaction steps, and controlled environment are anticipated to propel the market growth.

U.S. flow chemistry market

The technology has been used in combination with various technologies including microwave irradiation, photochemistry, inductive heating, electrochemistry, and 3D printing. This allows development of fully automated process with high efficiency and sustainability. Nowadays, 3D printing technology is utilized in order to develop reaction ware devices for flow chemistry. This leads to low production cost and high robustness of the equipment.

Continuous stirred tank reactors (CSTR) and plug flow reactors (PFR) are the most widely used reactors for flow chemistry. Low labor cost due to automatic controller and sensor in the CSTR systems lead to low operating cost for this technology. In addition, high yield through these processes results in the reduction in overall cost of production, which in turn is anticipated to propel demand over the forecast period.

The regulatory bodies including the U.S. FDA and European Commission support the use of flow chemistry for manufacturing of APIs and chemicals. This technology follows the quality by design efforts of the U.S. FDA which is expected to increase its utilization in these industries over the forecast period.

The demand for reactors has witnessed the significant increase over the past years on account of high efficiency, safety, and opportunity to scale up the chemical production process. However, the requirement of high research & development investment and capital cost is expected to pose a significant challenge for the market over the coming years.

Reactor Insights

CSTR reactors dominated the global market with a revenue share of 44.0% in 2015. Compatibility of these reactors during various reaction phases including liquid phase, gas-liquid phase, and solid-liquid phase has led to the high adoption rate over the past years. Moreover, simple construction of these reactors is expected to propel its demand over the forecast period.

Microreactors are expected to witness the fastest growth over the forecast period on account of rapidly growing use in the pharmaceutical and fine chemicals industry. These reactors require less space and low capital investment. In addition, these reactors allow safe processing conditions for highly reactive and toxic reactions. This segment accounted for 4.7% revenue share of global market in 2015.

The plug flow reactors are highly suitable for rapid reactions and large capacity processes which are expected to increase its utilization in pharmaceutical and chemical manufacturing over the forecast period. These reactors provide huge opportunities for scaling up the production process at low cost which is anticipated to have a positive impact on the market growth over the coming years.

Microwave-assisted continuous reactors have been utilized majorly for academic and laboratory applications due to size limitations. However, efforts have been made in order to scale up the production process with microwave reactors in order to use the technology in manufacturing API and chemicals on the commercial scale. Such factors are likely to augment demand over the coming years.

Application Insights

Chemicals accounted for the largest market share of 37.1% in the global market in 2015. Growing application in specialty chemicals and fine chemicals due to increasing focus towards safety, environmental regulations, and cost-effectiveness is anticipated to drive the demand over the forecast period. 

Increasing focus on scaling up the production process is expected to propel the demand from chemical industry. It allows a reduction in the number of steps and reaction rate which is likely to have a positive impact on the market growth.

Global flow chemistry market

The utilization of the technology in the pharmaceutical industry is anticipated to witness the fastest growth in conducting reactions, continuous separations, and continuous crystallization. Fierce competition in the API manufacturing industry coupled with growing need for cost reduction is expected to augment the demand for the product in pharmaceuticals over the coming years. This segment accounted for a revenue share of 24.0% of the global market in 2015.

Academia and research is an important aspect of flow chemistry in various fields especially pharmaceuticals and chemicals. Numerous companies in the pharmaceutical industry have been trying to maintain a collaboration between the industry and academic sectors. Academia & research is likely to bring in new methodologies for manufacturing of chemicals and APIs which is expected to augment the demand for reactors in this segment.

Regional Insights

North America was the largest market, accounting for a revenue share of 36.8%, in terms of revenue, in 2015. The presence of robust chemical manufacturing infrastructure coupled with technological advancement is expected to augment the demand for flow technology in the region. In addition, increasing investment in petrochemical manufacturing is expected to propel the demand over the forecast period.

Europe is one of the fastest growing regions and accounted for a revenue share of 22.1% in 2016. The region has witnessed a rapid increase in the demand for flow reactors from chemicals industry over the past few years. R&D activities on pharmaceutical manufacturing in UK, Germany, France, and Switzerland is likely to be the driving factor behind the growing demand in the region.

Growing concern regarding greener and efficient technology in numerous industries is likely to increase the adoption rate of flow reactors in Asia Pacific. The pharmaceutical market, especially in economies including Vietnam, China, Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Bangladesh, and India is expected to witness significant growth over the coming years.

The Middle East and Africa accounted for the smallest revenue share of the global flow chemistry industry in 2015. The petrochemical industry is expected to witness the fastest growth in the demand for the technology on account of the presence of numerous market players in the region. MEA is a major exporter of petrochemicals to Asia and Europe which is expected to develop new opportunities for utilization of technology in the region.

Flow Chemistry Market Share Insights

The competitive environment in the market is driven by innovation in technology for the application of flow chemistry. The companies have been investing heavily in R & D and developing instruments that not only optimize the production method but also improve the yield of the product. Growing demand for fine chemicals and specialty chemicals across the globe has facilitated manufacturers to form alliances with end-users for the application of flow chemistry technologies.

R&D and new product development are the major factors driving the flow chemistry market. Companies in the market are tying up with educational institutions along with their in-house R&D facilities to develop processes and technologies that provide them with a sustainable advantage in the future.

Report Scope



Base year for estimation


Actual estimates/Historical data

2014 - 2015

Forecast period

2016 - 2025

Market representation

Revenue in USD Million, and CAGR from 2016 to 2025

Regional scope

North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Central & South America, Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S., Germany, UK, China, Japan, India, Brazil

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue global, regional & country levels and provides an analysis on the market trends in each of the sub-markets from 2014 to 2025. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global flow chemistry market report on the basis of application, reactor, and region:

  • Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • Pharmaceuticals

    • Chemicals

    • Academia & Research

    • Petrochemicals

    • Others

  • Reactor Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • CSTR

    • Plug Flow Reactor

    • Microreactor

    • Microwave System

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2014 - 2025)

    • North America

      • U.S.

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • UK

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

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