Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Product (Medical Grade & Prosthetics, Fibers), By Application (Additives, Filtration), And Segment Forecasts, 2020 - 2027

  • Published Date: Dec, 2020
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2019
  • Report ID: 978-1-68038-506-9
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2016 - 2018
  • Number of Pages: 120

Report Overview

The global Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene market size was valued at USD 1.76 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.4% from 2020 to 2027. Increasing demand from various applications, such as batteries, medical-grade & prosthetics, additives, fibers, filtration, and membranes, are significantly driving market growth. The product’s superior physical properties as compared to other polymers are anticipated to augment the demand over the forecast period. In addition, Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMWPE) is gaining increasing acceptance in defense applications owing to its properties, such as resistance to chemicals, moisture, corrosion, and dirt, which will support market growth.

The U.S. Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene market size, by product, 2016 - 2027 (USD Million)

Its advantage over conventional metals and polymers, such as low weight, low friction coefficient, higher impact strength, tremendous energy absorption capacity, wide service temperature range, and wear resistance, drive its demand further. The use of UHMWPE results in lower weight, diminished noise & vibrations, reduced production costs, and negligible maintenance. It is also used for Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and vehicle armor owing to its high impact strength.

Several governments worldwide have taken initiatives to provide better protective gear for their military and law enforcement personnel, thereby boosting the product demand. Joint replacement surgeries for knees and hips have witnessed a rapid uptrend over the last five years. Technological advancements have resulted in better prosthetics, longer lifespan, and more comfort for patients. The increasing geriatric population in several countries, such as the U.S., Canada, Germany, and Japan, is expected to drive medical-grade UHMWPE demand over the forecast period.

However, the higher cost of UHMWPE than other polymers, such as polypropylene, polyethylene, and engineering thermoplastics, is expected to hamper the market growth in the coming years. Also, the recent outbreak of Covid-19 across the globe has negatively affected the product demand in several applications due to stalled industrial output and restriction in supply and transport due.

Product Insights

The medical-grade & prosthetics product segment led the market and accounted for more than 32% of the global revenue in 2019. UHMWPE has been one of the most preferred materials to use within the production of medical implant applications. It has been relied upon because of its high resistance to wear and abrasion coupled with its excellent durable properties. UHMWPE is a material with long chains with extremely pliable and good impact strength. Moreover, they are lightweight as compared to metal materials. These properties have increased the product demand in medical applications in the past few years and the trend is projected to continue over the forecast period.

The use of UHMWPE in joint replacement surgeries on account of its versatility and effectiveness is further projected to fuel the product demand over the forecast period. The rising aging population, lack of fitness, and changing lifestyle are the key factors contributing to the increasing number of joint replacement surgeries across the globe, which, in turn, is projected to boost product demand.

UHMWPE sheets are extensively used to solve wear, friction, and material flow challenges in various application industries, such as packaging, food & beverage, general conveyor technology, and chemicals, owing to their outstanding sliding properties, high impact strength, extreme wear resistance, and high chemical resistance.

Application Insights

The medical-grade & prosthetics application segment led the market and accounted for 32.8% of the global revenue share in 2019. The growing geriatric population, especially in North America and Europe, is presumed to play a critical role in shaping the medical-grade & prosthetics market over the forecast period. Technological advancements related to UHMWPE usage as prosthetics are crucial factors that are expected to impact the global market positively.

UHMWPE is a durable polymer that is ideally used as a stable porous medium for general and fluid-based environments. Higher product prices make it affordable mostly in developed regions, such as North America and Europe. Reliability and favorable regulations are expected to benefit the overall product demand in the filtration industry. UHMWPE has gained popularity in lead-acid battery separators in the past few years.

Global Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene market share, by application, 2019 (%)

Its higher molecular weight, compared to conventional HDPE, PVC, glass fiber, and cellulose separators, is expected to drive the demand for UHMWPE. The product is used as additives in the engineering plastics and rubber industry. Also, product properties, such as good impact strength, wear & abrasion resistance, and low friction compared to conventional polymers, are further projected to propel its demand in additives application.

Regional Insights

North America led the market and accounted for over 40% share of global revenue in 2019. The U.S. dominated the regional market in 2019 and is projected to maintain its dominance over the forecast period. UHMWPE in protective armor application is witnessing significant growth in the region. Increasing military & defense budgets in the U.S. and growth in reported cases of joint surgeries, such as that of hips and knees, are expected to drive product demand in North America.

The government military programs, such as the Soldier Protection System, which comprise a series of lighter weight ballistic plates, more lightweight combat helmets, bulletproof vests, and other protective armor, to aid soldier mobility, are expected to create a massive opportunity for the UHMWPE market over the forecast period.

Furthermore, increasing demand for seafood is positively influencing the growth of the country’s fishing industry, which, in turn, is propelling the product demand in fibers application. However, growing cases of Covid-19 and limited cross border trade are negatively affecting the product demand, thereby hindering the market growth.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

The market is fragmented in nature with the presence of various key players. Major players, in particular, compete on the basis of production capacity expansions, product portfolio developments, and methods to implement new technologies in the manufacturing of UHMWPE.

The raw materials used along with their affiliated costs play a significant role in determining the price of the final product. As a result, the prices of raw materials, such as ethylene and polyethylene terephthalate, are expected to play a vital role in the market over the forecast period. Many established and emerging players are engaged in the capacity expansion to consolidate their fixed costs by catering to increased demand from end-use applications.

For instance, on 23rd October 2020, Celanese Corp. announced to add a new production line of its GUR UHMW-PE at its Bishop, Texas manufacturing facility. This new production line is expected to add approximately 15 kilotons per annum to GUR product capacity and the production is slated to begin by 2022. Some prominent players in the global Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene market include:

  • Celanese Corp.

  • LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V.

  • Koninklijke DSM N.V.

  • Mitsubishi Chemical Advanced Materials Group

  • China Petrochemical Corp.

  • LianLe Chemical Corp.

  • Crown Plastics, Inc.

  • Braskem

  • Asahi Kasei Corp.

  • Dotmar Engineering Plastics

  • Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.

  • Garland Manufacturing Company

  • TSE Industries, Inc.

Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2020

USD 1.84 billion

Revenue forecast in 2027

USD 3.91 billion

Growth Rate

CAGR of 11.4% from 2020 to 2027

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2016 - 2018

Forecast period

2020 - 2027

Quantitative units

Volume in kilotons, revenue in USD million/billion, and CAGR from 2020 to 2027

Report coverage

Volume forecast, revenue forecast, competitive landscape, growth factors and trends

Segments covered

Product, application, and region

Regional scope

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

Country Scope

U.S.; Germany; U.K.; Italy; China; India; Japan; Brazil; Saudi Arabia

Key companies profiled

Celanese Corp.; LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V.; Koninklijke DSM N.V.; Mitsubishi Chemical Advanced Materials Group; China Petrochemical Corp.; LianLe Chemical Corp.; Crown Plastics, Inc.; Braskem; Asahi Kasei Corp.; Dotmar Engineering Plastics; Mitsui Chemicals, Inc.; Garland Manufacturing Company; TSE Industries, Inc.

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2027. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global Ultra-High Molecular Weight Polyethylene market report on the basis of product, application, region:

  • Product Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • Medical Grade & Prosthetics

    • Fibers

    • Sheets

    • Rods

    • Others

  • Application Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • Medical Grade & Prosthetics

    • Filtration

    • Batteries

    • Fibers

    • Additives

    • Membranes

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilotons; Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • North America

      • The U.S.

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • The U.K.

      • Italy

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Japan

    • Central & South America

      • Brazil

    • Middle East & Africa

      • Saudi Arabia

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