LSR World stopped by Momentive Performance Materials GmbH in Leverkusen, Germany, to take a look at the company's LSR products and solutions development pipeline.
Looking at world markets, Holger Albrecht, Momentive vice president and elastomers business unit leader, referred to China as "a large market that has also really developed in the past 10 to 15 years."
Albrecht expects greater use of new technologies as China shifts from its focus on commodity manufacturing and mass production.
He believes that as Chinese wages rise, LSR is positioned to gain market share from the significantly larger solid silicone market, on account of more precise molding with shorter cycle times.
Albrecht is well-qualified on this subject, as he set up Bayer AG's application development center for silicones in Singapore in the 1990s, and he was global elastomers product manager from 2012-2015.
Global LSR suppliers are active in China, as well as quite a few smaller local players.
"While we have also always been active in China, we see Chinese LSR producers starting to focus on other lower-wage cost countries now, such as Vietnam and Indonesia," Albrecht said.
Although Europe is not the largest LSR market, Albrecht said it is a very interesting one, as it has historically been the technology driver. So there is a strong focus on Europe, along with the United States. But Momentive nevertheless considers China the most dynamic and largest LSR market worldwide.