Vanadium metal exists in elements like carnotite, magnetite, and patronite among others. It is extracted from the vanadium ore using the heating and cruising processes. This metal has beneficial properties like malleability, corrosion resistance and sturdiness, which make it popular in manufacturing industry applications. Mainly used as a steel additive, vanadium alloys are tough, making them shock and vibration resistant. Such qualities make them favorable for making armor plates, crankshafts, piston rods, and other tools in construction.
Furthermore, due to its low neutron-absorbing properties, vanadium is frequently used in nuclear reactors, and as a pigment for ceramics and glass. With a market that stands at US$ 46.2 billion in 2023, the vanadium market is expected to maintain its steady growth. The reason behind its soaring market share lies, in part, in the following vanadium market trends:
Increase in Demand for Vanadium in Energy Storage Applications
Vanadium is becoming increasingly important in energy storage, especially in grid-scale batteries. The growth of vanadium redox flow batteries (VRFB) can be linked to their notable advantages over other batteries, which include:
- Their almost unlimited capacity
- They can be recharged through electrolytes
- They can discharge power for long periods
- Emphasis on renewable energy and the need for efficient energy storage solutions are major drivers for vanadium demand. In addition, government policies supporting renewable energy storage are expected to boost the vanadium market further.
Huge Demand in the Medical Industry
Vanadium demand in the medical industry has led manufacturers to explore the market by introducing vanadium in medical formulas for low blood sugar, pre-diabetes or diabetes, heart disease, and athletic performance.
Its Use in the Automobile Sector
Ferrovanadium, an alloy of vanadium that increases fuel efficiency and reduces weight, is largely responsible for the meteoric rise of vanadium demand in the automobile sector.
As vehicle manufacturers continue to research materials that weigh less but improve the structural integrity of their products, ferrovanadium becomes a critical resource that many producers are switching to in efforts to future-proof their offerings.
Demand in the Steel Industry
An increase in the manufacture of vanadium alloys due to their known qualities such as durability, high tensile strength, and corrosion resistance has created numerous beneficial opportunities for market growth.
Production of Artificial Vanadium
This is a trend most investors are pushing for due to the rise in demand for vanadium, t. Artificial Vanadium can be used in the automobile and steel sectors as well as in the aerospace industry.
Its Recognition in the Food Industry
Traces of vanadium can be naturally found in plants, and is known to have properties that can potentially manage diabetes and obesity. Another health benefit is that it is shown to help with the metabolism of carbohydrates and lipids. Vanadium is commonly used in the food industry as a food additive which improves the nutritional value of certain foods and acts as a preservative for processed foods; it extends the shelf life. It has several antioxidant properties that enhance the protection of the human body cells from oxidative damage.
There are traces of vanadium in the human daily dietary intake. Nevertheless, the trace amounts vary based on factors like the food source and geographical area. It is important to note that the research on the safest intake amounts on the daily diet and the potential side effects is still underway. You should exercise caution and consult a health expert before you use it for any food purposes.
A Pigment for Ceramics
Vanadium is used in the composition of pigments used to finish ceramics. These pigments are durable, fade resistant and offer color stability. These properties make them ideal for applications like ceramic glazes and glaze coatings. They are also popular in ceramic production as they are highly compatible with various ceramic materials and firing temperatures. Vanadium-based pigments provide an avenue for business growth and investment opportunities for manufacturers and key players in the vanadium sector .
The vanadium market drivers, like the rising demand in industries like steel production, energy storage, and ceramics, promise a yielding future for the vanadium market. Due to new trends and dynamics in this sector the sector is expected to continue experiencing changing trends in 2023.
The high demand for redox flow batteries and sustainable energy as well as the growing adoption of renewable energy are other key drivers of the vanadium market. Foreseeable opportunities might arise in the food and pharmaceutical industries thanks to the ongoing research on the potential health benefits of vanadium in managing diabetes and obesity .Nevertheless, the vanadium market faces challenges like the fluctuating prices of raw materials, stringent regulations, and geopolitical factors significantly impact market trends.