RO, UF, MF market growth triggered in part by semiconductor industry

Northbrook, Illinois–Suppliers of reverse osmosis (RO) systems, ultrafiltration (UF), and microfiltration (MF) are experiencing significant market growth driven by growth in the semiconductor, power, and desalinization industries, according to the McIlvaine Co., a Northbrook, Illinois market research firm, in its recently released ‘RO, UF, MF World Markets’ report. The world market for cross-flow membrane systems will reach $5 billion in 2003, the report concludes.

During the next decade, the semiconductor industry will have to expand its RO capacity 500% to meet the projected demands for ultrapure water to clean wafers. Taiwan currently is the hottest market for RO systems in the electronic industry, according to the report, although the U.S. is the biggest market for power applications of RO.

Membrane suppliers such as Dow and DuPont have the potential to individually achieve sales above $100 million, the report indicates, while system suppliers such as Ionics and Osmonics can set even higher goals. The RO pump market is large enough that a supplier with a 25% market share could “sail” past the $100 million sales level, forecasts McIlvaine Co. in the report.


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