In times when Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things (IoT), autonomous driving and smart cities became the focus of development globally, application of 5G is becoming a reality now. Combining cutting-edge network technology and the very latest research, 5G should offer connections that are multitudes faster than current connections. The networks will help provide the infrastructure needed to carry huge amounts of data, and allow for a smarter and more connected world. In April 2019, the first commercial 5G network was launched in South Korea while worldwide commercial launch has already started.
High-frequency applications of 5G require new specialty materials for Printed Circuit Boards (PCB) which is either made from Flexible Copper Clad Laminates (FCCL) or conventional Copper Clad Laminates (CCL).
Generally, the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5G CCL is predicted to be 20% from 2018 to 2022 as a CAGR of 50% is expected for 5G FCCL. All in all, Evonik owes huge potential on 5G PCB related applications. The accessible market of PEEK film, for instance, will be about 45 Million Euro in 2023, and about 6.1 Million Euro for TAC/TAICRO. By 2023, an overall market of 118 Million Euro is accessible for Evonik.
So far, 8 projects for different applications within 5G industry have already started. Evonik‘s products can be developed or enhanced to avoid transmission loss, improve important resins and ensure heat resistance. Hence, about nine Business Lines may conribute to the success of these projects jointly. Further partnerships or acquisitions may be necessary to accelerate the process. For this purpose, several potential customers and partners, especially in the APN region, have already been identified. Development of 5G is crucial in APN region: about 90% of PCB and 96% of Sheet/Film for FPC are manufactured in Asia Pacific region and then transferred to downstream industries all over the world.