The global proppants market size was valued at USD 7.90 billion in 2020 and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.6% during the forecast period. Proppants are used in hydraulic fracturing and are pumped into the oil well with fracturing fluid. They are used in the process of oil extraction to form channels or fissures to enable the easy flow of hydrocarbons. They are available in varied densities, sizes, shapes, and qualities to enhance the final permeability of fissures. Proppants, in combination with improved drilling techniques, improve the production capacity of wells. The type of proppants to be used varies according to sound conditions.
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Growth in hydraulic fracturing and increasing application of resin-coated proppants for improved productivity has increased the utilization of ceramic proppants. Integration of IoT, artificial intelligence, and microchips in proppants is expected to offer growth opportunities during the forecast period. However, high costs associated with ceramic proppants and price unreliability in the oil and gas sector limit the growth of the market.
The COVID-19 outbreak has negatively impacted the proppants industry due to supply chain disruption, operational challenges, transportation delays, and travel restrictions. The oil and gas sector has been severely affected by the pandemic and has postponed exploration activities.
Manufacturing activities have also been halted due to various government regulations across the globe. Reduced oil demand, economic decline, and drop in oil prices have impacted the growth of the market. Oversupply of oil at the beginning of the pandemic and differences between Saudi Arabia and Russia regarding oil prices have restricted the growth of the proppants industry during the pandemic.
The different types of proppants available in the market include ceramic proppant, resin-coated proppant, and frac sand. Frac sand contains high-purity quartz sand with durable, round grains to offer strength and crush resistance. It is obtained from high purity sandstone. This sand is processed to screen and eliminate microscopic particles. Resin-coated sand involves coating sand with a resin for a smooth surface, uniform shape, and higher strength. Ceramic proppants require controlled manufacturing to acquire their extremely high strength and most uniform shape, which provides greater oil and gas extraction output.
The global industry is fuelled by the economic growth in developing countries, rising industrialization, and growing shale gas production activities. Rising requirements for proppants per well and increasing demand for natural gas to meet energy demands drive the growth of the market. Technological advancements in drilling and fracturing technologies and significant investments in research and development encourage market players to develop new products.
The market is primarily segmented on the basis of type, application, and region.
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On the basis of type, the market is segmented into ceramic proppant, frac sand, and resin-coated proppant. The frac sand segment dominated the global market in 2020. Frac sand is used to extract oil and natural gas from tight shale formations. Frac sand is high-purity quartz sand containing durable and round grains. It offers crush resistance and is used in the hydraulic fracturing process to produce oil, natural gas, and natural gas liquids. Growth in oil and gas exploration and integration of advanced technologies is expected to drive the growth of this segment.
On the basis of application, the market is segmented into tight gas, shale gas, coal-bed methane, LNG, and others. The shale gas segment dominated the global market in 2020. Increasing demand for extraction of shale gas owing to application in diverse sectors to meet energy requirements, and the presence of large unexplored shale gas reserves support the market growth. Growth in industrialization and technological advancements are some factors expected to fuel the growth of this segment.
North America dominated the global proppants market in 2020. Rising oil and gas exploration, growing demand for mineral exploration, and rising development of shale gas reserves support the growth of proppants market in the region. Industrial growth, growth in hydraulic fracking, and increasing demand for oil recovery result in greater demand for proppants. Growing investments in research and development activities, expansion of international players in this region, and technological advancements are some factors attributed to the growth of proppants in this region.
The leading players in the market include Atlas Sand Company, Badger Mining Corporation, Carbo Ceramics Inc., Compagnie de Saint-Gobain S.A., Covia Holdings LLC, Fores Engineering, Hexion Inc., Hi-Crush Inc., JSC Borovichi Refractories Plant, Mineração Curimbaba Ltda, Momentive Performance Materials, Preferred Proppants, LLC, Schlumberger Limited, U.S. Silica Holdings, Inc., Unimin Corporation LLC, Xinmi Wanli Industry Development Co., Ltd, and Yixing Orient Petroleum Proppant Co. Ltd.
These players are expanding their presence across various geographies and entering new markets in developing regions to expand their customer base and strengthen their presence in the market. The companies are also introducing new innovative products in the market to cater to the growing consumer demands.
Market size value in 2020
USD 7.90 billion
Revenue forecast in 2028
USD 13.23 billion
8.6% from 2021 - 2028
2016 - 2019
2021 - 2028
Revenue in USD billion and CAGR from 2021 to 2028
By Type, By Application, By Region
North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, Middle East & Africa
Atlas Sand Company, Badger Mining Corporation, Carbo Ceramics Inc., Compagnie de Saint-Gobain S.A., Covia Holdings LLC, Fores Engineering, Hexion Inc., Hi-Crush Inc., JSC Borovichi Refractories Plant, Mineração Curimbaba Ltda, Momentive Performance Materials, Preferred Proppants, LLC, Schlumberger Limited, U.S. Silica Holdings, Inc., Unimin Corporation LLC, Xinmi Wanli Industry Development Co., Ltd, and Yixing Orient Petroleum Proppant Co. Ltd.