The global hydrogen fluoride gas detection market is projected to reach USD 704 million by 2026 from an estimated USD 543 million in 2021, at a CAGR of 5.3% from 2021 to 2026. Major factors driving the growth of the market include increasing accidents due to hydrogen fluoride gas leakage in oil & gas refineries and chemical plants are driving demand for hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices and stringent regulation for human and environmental safety.
Key Market Players
Honeywell International Inc. (US), Teledyne Technologies Incorporated (US), Drägerwerk AG & Co. KGaA (Germany), MSA Safety Incorporated (US), GfG Instrumentation, Inc. (US), Sensidyne, LP (US), Crowcon Detection Instruments Ltd. (UK), Analytical Technology, Inc. (ATI) (US), RKI Instruments, Inc. (US), and R.C. Systems, Inc. (US).
COVID-19 Impact on the Global Hydrogen Fluoride Gas Detection Market
The outbreak and the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic had a negative impact on the hydrogen fluoride gas detection market in 2020, resulting in decreased shipments of hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices. This resulted in declined revenues leading to low growth trends of the market during the first half of 2020. This trend continued to prevail till the first quarter of 2021.
Post COVID-19, the global hydrogen fluoride gas detection market is expected to witness steady growth due to the stringent government regulations and increase in demand for hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices in the chemical, semiconductor, and pharmaceutical industries.
Driver: Stringent regulations for human and environmental safety
Government regulations play a significant role in the growth of the hydrogen fluoride gas detection market. As hydrogen fluoride is highly toxic and corrosive, it has adverse effects on human health and the environment. To safeguard human lives and the environment, different governing bodies, including the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), have laid down certain guidelines that regulate the manufacturing and application of hydrogen fluoride and its detection devices. OSHA is responsible for the promulgation and enforcement activities. As per their directives, the permissible exposure limit (PEL) for hydrogen fluoride is 3.0 ppm as an 8-hour time-weighted average (TWA). NIOSH is responsible for recommending health and safety standards. As per their directives, the recommended exposure limit (REL) for hydrogen fluoride is 3.0 ppm as an 8-hour TWA and 6.0 ppm as a 15-minute short-term exposure limit (STEL). EPA is an independent executive agency of the US federal government tasked with environmental protection matters. The agency prepares guidelines pertaining to acute exposure guideline levels (AEGL) of workers to hydrogen fluoride. As per their guidelines, the AGEL-1 for hydrogen fluoride is 1.0 ppm as an 8-hour TWA, AGEL-2 for hydrogen fluoride is 12.0 ppm as an 8-hour TWA, and AGEL-3 for hydrogen fluoride is 22.0 ppm as an 8-hour TWA. All the manufacturers and end-user industries need to follow the regulations laid by these authorities. Also, several end-user industries such as chemical, refineries and pharmaceutical industries require to submit data related to safety practices adopted by them, measures to handle any hazardous conditions occurring due to hydrogen fluoride gas leakage, the amount of gas leaked in the plant, etc., to EPA. Thus, the imposition of these regulations increases the demand for hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices in different end-user industries.
Restraint: High price of hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices
Hydrogen fluoride gas is extremely hazardous for human health and the environment and therefore needs to be monitored constantly. However, hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices are extremely costly compared with other gas detection devices. For instance, an NDIR technology-based carbon dioxide gas sensor offered by Honeywell International, Inc. would cost USD 276.34 per unit, while an electrochemical technology-based hydrogen fluoride gas detection sensor offered by Honeywell International, Inc. costs USD 720 per unit. Moreover, the product development process is also time-consuming; hence, very limited product launches or developments by the manufacturers are observed between 2019–2021. Moreover, as hydrogen fluoride is corrosive, specific raw materials, such as high-grade corrosion resistant 316 stainless steel, are required to manufacture the detection devices that would not get affected when exposed to hydrogen fluoride gas. These raw materials are costly, which in turn increases the manufacturing cost of the devices. Thus, factors such as device development cost, R&D cost, and raw material cost contribute to the high price of hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices.
Opportunity: Increased adoption of IoT by end-user industries
Industry 4.0 fully automates manufacturing processes with very little to negligible human interference. It works on the Internet of Things (IoT), cyber-physical systems, Cloud robotics, Cloud computing, and Big Data. Thus, IoT has gained the attention of technology vendors, organizations, business decision-makers, and consumers in recent years. Industry players are focusing on adopting IoT due to continuous technological advancements, increased cellular connectivity and data transfer rates, and Cloud infrastructure development. IoT can be implemented using various smart and connected devices integrated into various smart appliances, smart homes, and connected cars. Additionally, the rising penetration of IoT in the industrial process has led to an upsurge in demand for portable and lightweight wireless and battery-powered hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices used for ubiquitous sensing as well as secured data storage and data transmission.
Various end-user industries such as chemicals, pharmaceuticals, semiconductor, mining and metallurgical, automotive, consumer electronics, and oil & gas have started implementing Industry 4.0 concepts in their manufacturing processes to harness their advantages, including increased productivity, flexibility, and safety, better quality, reduced need for consumables, and reduced production costs. This has led to the automation of different processes by manufacturing companies as well as the digitalization of their products and processes. The automation and digitalization of manufacturing companies are carried out using interconnected sensors and different detection and control devices and made available to human operators through IoT. These IoT devices are required to be robust, efficient, and cost-effective and are expected to increase the demand for wireless, portable, and IO-link compatible hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices during the forecast period.
Challenge: Hydrogen fluoride gas sensor calibration is difficult
Hydrogen fluoride is a highly toxic, colorless gas, which is lighter than air and widely used in different end-user industries and industrial processes. It is highly soluble in water, where it forms hydrofluoric acid, which is extremely corrosive and causes irritation to the skin and mucous membranes, resulting in blindness by rapid destruction of the corneas and requiring immediate medical attention upon exposure. Thus, various gas detection devices such as sensors, transmitters, detectors, monitors, and analyzers are used to detect, measure, and monitor hydrogen fluoride gas concentrations. However, calibration of these devices is difficult due to the harmful effects of the gas, the time required for device calibration, and the response to different interfering gases while detecting hydrogen fluoride gas.
The hydrogen fluoride gas sensor takes a little longer to reach a final stable reading than other common electrochemical sensors such as carbon monoxide (CO) and hydrogen sulfide (H2S) gases. For instance, the hydrogen fluoride gas sensor response time at 20°C to 50% of its final stable reading (t50) is approximately 30 seconds, and 90% of its final stable reading (t90) is approximately 90 seconds. The hydrogen fluoride gas sensor is significantly affected by sudden shifts in humidity, causing a transient response, i.e., a momentary shift to zero response. The sensor response is positive when changing to drier air and negative when changing to more humid air. However, the sensor rapidly recovers as soon as conditions stabilize, and it requires time to stabilize if it is placed into an area with different relative humidity. Moreover, the hydrogen fluoride gas sensor responds to a number of acid gases with similar chemistry.
The portable devices segment is projected to grow at a higher CAGR during the forecast period
Portable devices, including detectors and handheld gas monitors, provide a relatively affordable option to end users compared with fixed monitors and offer ease in locating the hydrogen fluoride gas. For instance, in the case of large manufacturing plants, wireless gas detectors can be used to detect exact locations or the exact points of hydrogen fluoride gas leaks. These devices are user-friendly, reduce installation costs, are battery-operated, and offer accurate and fast hydrogen fluoride gas monitoring. Due to these benefits, portable devices are expected to grow at a higher CAGR during the forecast period.
The chemicals segment is projected to grow at the highest CAGR from 2021 to 2026
Hydrogen fluoride is a corrosive gas majorly found in chemical industries. It is used for manufacturing groups of chemicals especially refrigerants that can be used in refrigerators and air conditioners. Also, it can be used as a catalyst in the manufacture of alkanes from smaller alkenes. Highly accurate hydrogen fluoride gas monitoring and detecting devices are required in this industry to avoid any hazardous accident on the field. Therefore, the chemical industry generates a huge demand for highly accurate, sensitive, and reliable hydrogen fluoride gas detection devices. Thus, the hydrogen fluoride gas detection market for the chemical industry is projected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period.
In 2026, the APAC is projected to hold the largest share of the overall hydrogen fluoride gas detection market
In 2026, the APAC is projected to hold the largest share of the overall hydrogen fluoride gas detection market. The market in the APAC is expected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The APAC is a manufacturing hub for automotive, consumer electronic devices and components. The growth of the hydrogen fluoride gas detection market in the APAC can be attributed to the large-scale production of electronic components in the region.
Countries such as China, Japan, India, and South Korea are major contributors to the growth of the hydrogen fluoride gas detection market in APAC. Factors such as the acceptance of innovative technologies and the increased popularity of advanced consumer electronics are driving the growth of the hydrogen fluoride gas detection market in this region.