When oil or coal is burned to generate energy, over 90% of the sulphur under normal temperature is converted into sulphur dioxide. Flue gas desulfurization is a process to remove sulphur dioxide from gas before it emits to atmosphere. This is done in thermal power plants during combustion of fossil fuels such as coal and oil. On the basis of desulfurization technique, flue gas desulfurization (FGD) can be segmented into wet sulphuric acid process, wet & spray dry scrubbing, dry sorbent injection system, and SNOX FGD. Increasing concerns over air pollution caused by release of sulphur dioxide in atmosphere is expected to be a major driving factor for FGD market over the next five years. Stringent government regulations over the emission of harmful gases in the atmosphere are anticipated to drive FGD market over the foreseeable future.
Growing electricity demand coupled with increasing dependency on coal for power generation is expected to boost the market demand over the next five years. Growing need of electricity in emerging nations coupled with rapid industrialization is anticipated to have positive impact on FGD system market in near future. Technological advancement in the field to get high efficient system is expected to open new opportunities for the market participants over the next five years. However, high maintenance and operation cost owing to disposal of waste during FGD process is expected to hamper the market in near future. In addition, alternative process to treat sulphur dioxide such as fluidized bed combustion, hydrodesulfurization, and THIOPAQ are expected to restrain the market growth over the next five years.
Based on technology, FGD systems are categorized into dry and wet systems. In dry systems, reagents such as limestone and lime are directly injected into flue gas to eliminate sulphur dioxide. While in wet systems, reagent is mixed with water to eradicate sulphur dioxide from gases. Wet FGD system is the dominant technology widely used owing to low maintenance and high efficiency.
Application segment for FGD market include reagents & replacements and FGD systems. Growing need for electricity in emerging nation such as India and China coupled with rapid industrialization is expected to boost the demand for coal fired power generation, which in turn likely to boost the market for new FGD systems over the forecast period. Reagents & replacements are primarily used in valves, nozzles, pump impellers, and filter belts. Increasing demand for reagents in this application is expected to drive the demand for reagents and replacements in near future.
Asia Pacific was the largest regional market accounting for over 50% of the total market in 2013. This trend is expected to continue over the forecast period owing to large number of thermal power plants in India and China. Furthermore, increasing concerns over air pollution caused by coal combustion is expected to complement the market growth in this region. North America and Europe together covered over 40% of the market share in 2013. Replacement of used parts in existing FGD systems is anticipated to drive the demand for FGD systems in these regions.
Low capital investment may provide opportunities to the new participant to enter into the market. Some major players operating in the global market include Babcock & Wilcox, Alstom S.A., Thermax, Siemens Energy, Hamon Research-Cottrell, Ducon Technologies Inc., Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, China Boqi, Marsulex Environmental Technologies, Chiyoda Corporation, and Lonjing Environment Technology Company Ltd.
Research Support Specialist, USA