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Publish Date: Mar 2015,   Pages: 200,   Report Code: MT-102
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SOFT MAGNETIC MATERIALS – TECHNOLOGIES, MATERIALS, DEVICES, new developments, industry structure and global markets



Magnets are important and highly sophisticated engineering materials that play a fundamental role in many of the electrical and electronic systems that serve modern society.


Magnets might be divided into two classes – permanent and soft magnetic materials.  Permanent magnetic materials are those which are constantly magnetized, while soft magnetic materials exhibit magnetic properties only when subjected to a magnetic field. Soft magnetic materials play a key role in power distribution, make possible the conversion between electrical and mechanical energy, underlie microwave communication, and provide both the transducers and the active storage material for data storage in information systems.


Soft magnetic materials exhibit magnetic properties only when they are subject to a magnetizing force such as the magnetic field created when current is passed through the wire surrounding a soft magnetic core. Soft ferromagnetic materials are generally associated with electrical circuits where they are used to amplify the flux generated by the electric currents.  These materials can be used in alternating current (AC) as well as direct current (DC) electrical circuits.



study goals and objectives


Today, energy loss (in the magnetic cores) in transmission and electrical appliances such as motors and transformers accounts for 3.4% of overall electricity consumption in the world. Magnetic iron-silicon steels are mostly used for such applications; 96% are used in motors and transformers. However, they are already nearing saturation in terms of magnetic performance, and they will be replaced in critical applications where size and thermal performance are critical. Worldwide consumption of electrical energy might be able to be reduced significantly by the application of superior soft magnetic materials, such as innovative high-Fe soft magnetic materials with a self-organizing nanoheteromorphous structure, in electrical transport and various electrical appliances.


This iRAP report has been prepared to highlight the many new developments in the soft magnetic materials industry. Many of the market segments are mature, while others are growing at faster rates. Developing economies such as China and India are also emerging as growth engines for many industries that use soft magnetic materials. These developments have created a need for a formal analysis of the technological and business issues, trends in manufacturing, markets, and competition between countries and regions in this market. Therefore, we have updated technology and market trends in this new study.


This report has been prepared to:


·         provide an overview of the various soft magnetic materials, their production technologies and applications;


·         identify the technological and business issues related to the commercial production of soft magnetic materials;


·         understand the inter-material competition among the various soft magnetic materials;


·         analyze competition among companies within each of the soft magnetic materials market segments;


·         determine the current size and future growth of the global markets for soft magnetic materials; and


·         identify and profile all global producers and suppliers of soft magnetic materials.




Contributions of the study


iRAP’’s technical and economic study covers technology and industry overviews, materials, current and emerging production methods, new developments in materials and processing techniques, business and technology issues, current and emerging applications, and an extensive market analysis. Current size and future growth of global markets are estimated for 2014 and 2019.





This report reviews the technology of soft magnetic materials, the types of soft magnetic materials, their applications, and current and anticipated demand for specific materials. For each material segment, the report provides an analysis of material and product types in the category, processing technologies, properties, applications, new developments and patents, the industry structure, global markets and competition.


The qualitative and quantitative judgments in this report contribute to the current knowledge of soft magnetic materials, their manufacturing technologies, applications, and markets. New efficiency standards in most countries for transformers and motors have resulted in fast adoption of amorphous steel in the last five years. This study has carved out all these new developments and new market opportunities.


The report further provides profiles of companies producing and supplying electrical steels, cold rolled motor lamination steels, amorphous steels and profiles of those producing and supplying soft ferrites, nickel iron alloys, powder iron, and other materials (silicon iron, cobalt iron and solenoid quality stainless steels).





This report is directed to the various strata of companies interested in developments in this field, including:


·         steel manufacturers;


·         companies involved in the development, manufacturing, and supplying of advanced materials;


·         manufacturers and suppliers of soft magnetic materials;


·         manufacturers of powder metallurgy products;


·         manufacturers and suppliers of systems and subsystems which incorporate soft magnets;


·         manufacturers of transformers, generators, motors, relays, solenoids, magnetic shielding, computer memories, recording heads, and similar devices;


·         manufacturers and suppliers of raw materials for soft ferrites;


·         importers and suppliers of soft magnetic materials; and


·         users of electrical steel, cold rolled lamination steel, amorphous steel, soft ferrites, nickel-iron alloys, iron-cobalt alloys, solenoid-quality stainless steel, etc.





Soft magnetic materials play a fundamental role in many of the electrical and electronic systems that characterize modern society. These materials are used in applications such as electrical power generation and transmission, electric motors, receipt of radio signals and microwaves, relays, solenoids, magnetic shielding and electromagnets. The properties of the materials used are being continuously improved.


The global soft magnetic material industry is a mature industry. However, a new energy paradigm, consisting of greater reliance on renewable energy sources and increased concern for energy efficiency in the total energy life-cycle, has accelerated research into energy-related technologies. New improved materials with higher energy efficiency have been demonstrated for amorphous and nanocrystalline soft magnetic materials. While amorphous steel has been used extensively as the core material for transformers and motors, the emerging nanocrystalline core material has even higher efficiency and will see much higher growth in the future.



Major findings of this report are:


  • According to the new study, the 2014 global market for soft magnetic materials stood at about $45.4 billion, and it is estimated to reach $66.6 billion by 2019. The compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) is expected to be 7.9% from 2014 to 2019.


  • The steel segment, which consists of electrical steel, cold-rolled lamination steel, and amorphous steel, has the largest market share.


  • In terms of dollar value, amorphous steel is expected to have the fastest growth rate followed by soft ferrites and other steels.


  • In terms of regional demand, Asia's demand for electrical steel has increased astronomically. It is the only region in the world that increased consumption of electrical steel from 2008 and will see growth to 2019.


  • Electrical steel is of great importance in China and India due to increasing energy consumption, concomitant with their strong economic growth. Not only are China and India putting new transformers into use, they are also replacing older transformers to improve grid reliability. Both are seeking higher efficiency, grain-oriented steels to reduce energy losses.


  • In terms of industry structure, China now is the largest soft magnetic materials producer in the world due to its low cost, highly trained labor force and vast raw materials.





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Published: March 2014

Report ID: MT-102

Pages: 200


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