Microfiltration market set to grow

By Gregory Roumeliotis

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Water Filtration

The global market for microfiltration (MF) membranes used in liquid
separations is set to grow at an average annual rate of 9.4 per
cent to more than $1.2bn (€1bn) by 2010 from an estimated $792m in
2005 according to a new report, as companies seek to replace their
old equipment.

The study from market analyst BCC Research says factors driving market growth include federal regulations, industry standards, consumer demand, and the need to replace aging or outdated existing equipment.

The most important driver however is the stricter governmental regulation imposed by agencies such as the FDA, as well as purity standards required by various industries.

MF operating costs have gone down recently because of improvements in materials and modules.

As a result, several applications have emerged for MF technology; drinking water treatment, filtration of various wastewaters for reuse, RO pre-treatment, microbial stabilization of wine and beer, biotech research and bioprocessing, and chemical and water filtration in semiconductor fabrication.

What is more, sales of membrane bioreactors (MBRs) using MF modules are a rapidly growing membrane application, the report says.

Growth in the segment stems from interest in treating wastewater to high quality standards for discharge or recycling and, in industry, for reclaiming process water.

MF also demonstrates potential for producing new milk-based liquid and dry ingredients, and low-carbohydrate dairy beverages with high protein content, while the growing unpopularity of diatomaceous earth filters has created strong interest in MF technology for processing beer.

Continued demand for new drug products coupled with an enormous membrane replacement market will contribute to double-digit growth in the pharmaceutical sector, the report concludes.

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