Glass is a crucial building material without which modern luxury high-rise living would not be possible. Glass has redefined contemporary buildings and helped people to enjoy panoramic views from lofty heights. Flat glass is one such component which is used on a large scale. It is widely used in industrial as well as scientific arenas. Flat glass is used in a variety of end-products which include facades and windows for buildings, solar panels, windows, and windscreens. It is the second largest segment in the glass industry in the European Union. The key users of flat glass include the automotive industry, and building and construction industry. Flat glass plays a crucial role in mitigating the effects of climate change by aiding in energy conservation through high performance architectural glass products, and reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Due to its significance, flat glass has a large number of end-use applications including healthcare, optical, aerospace, electronics, and telecommunication.
The various types of flat glass include toughened glass, laminated glass, coated glass, extra clear glass, mirrored glass, patterned glass, and annealed glass. All these glasses mentioned above are used for specific applications in various industries. Toughened glass, which is also known as tempered glass, is a type of safety glass widely used in passenger vehicles, architectural doors, windows and tables, shower doors, bulletproof glass, driving masks, and cookware among others. Laminated glass is also a type of safety glass that stays in place even after breaking. It finds application in automobile windshields, exterior of storefronts, windows, and curtain walls among others. Patterned glass is widely used in bathroom enclosures, elevator interiors, patio furniture, and window treatments etc. Mirrored glasses are used as per need in several applications. Different types of mirrors have various applications such as rear view mirrors are used in automobiles, mouth mirrors or dental mirrors are used by dentists, solar mirrors are used for making integral components of the solar power plants. Wide applications and rising demand for flat glass in several industries has led to the growing demand for flat glass.
The key drivers for the growth of flat glass market include rising expenditure on building and construction activities, and advancements in the solar panel production. In addition, changes and advancements in the motor vehicle sector also contribute to the expansion of the flat glass market. Growth of flat glass market also depends on the rise of emerging markets which are characterized by growing population, foreign investment, rising middle class, and disposable incomes. Luxurious and changing lifestyle of people has also led to increased use of flat glass for interior designing purposes.
The key market segments for flat glass market include North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, and Rest of the World (RoW). Asia Pacific is the fastest and largest growing market globally. Japan is expected to further fuel demand for flat glass due to recovery in domestic building and construction sectors. North America and Europe are also expected to boost demand for flat glass due to the luxurious lifestyle of the people in these regions.
Key players in the lightweight materials market include Asahi Glass Company, AVIC Sanxin, AGC Flat Glass (Dalian) Co. Ltd, China Glass Holdings Ltd, China Southern Glass Holding Co. Ltd, China Yaohua Glass Group Corporation, Fu Yao Group, JYSP, Taiwan Glass Industry Corporation, Xinyi Glass Holdings Limited, Nippon Sheet Glass, Guardian Industries, and Saint-Gobain Hanglass Nanjing Co. Ltd.