Global Stimulation Materials Market - Segmented by Material Type, and Geography - Growth, Trends and Forecast (2018 - 2023)
The global stimulation materials market is expected to register a CAGR of 8.75% during the forecast period, 2018 to 2023. North America region is estimated to lead the market owing to its continuous development of unconventional energy resources. Frac Sand segment is expected to be the fastest growing by Proppant material type.
Development of Unconventional Gas Resources
The energy sector is engaged in the development of unconventional energy resources, given the rising energy needs and depleting oil & gas reserves in the world. Unconventional resources, such as, tight gas, shale gas and coal-bed methane, hold great potential as a source of natural gas. Well simulation processes, such as, hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling, have led to the shale revolution in the oil & gas industry. Recoverable shale gas reserves are present in numerous locations, such as, Algeria, the United States, China, Argentina, and Canada. The Alaskan arctic holds the potential to produce 27 billion barrels of recoverable oil, which can be produced only after altering the ban on new leases and opening up the area for drilling. China has expanded its production from the Changning-Weiyuan shale gas pilot zone, into the southwestern Sichuan province. In Argentina, Vaca Meurta formation in Neuquen Basin holds approximately 308 tcf of recoverable shale resources. Additionally, countries, such as, Australia, India, and Indonesia, are taking tentative steps to explore their potential shale oil & gas reserves, which is expected to increase demand and usage of stimulation materials. The development of unconventional resources and increasing explorations for shale, along with the application of hydraulic fracturing and horizontal drilling technologies, is expected to increase the demand for stimulation materials in a significant manner during the forecast period.
Frac Sand - The Fastest Growing Material Type (Proppant)
Frac sand is the most widely used category of proppants for hydraulic fracturing. This proppant is made of highly pure and durable sand with round grains and majorly made out of sandstone or bauxite. Frac sand’s size ranges from about 0.1 millimeter in diameter to 2 millimeter in diameter, depending on the requirement of the fracking job. Frac sand is the most widely used proppant while resin-coated and ceramic sands are used for specific applications that involve greater production depths and thermal resistance. Raw frac sand is the most widely used due to its broad applicability in oil and natural gas wells and its cost advantage over other proppants. This proppant’s usage is found majorly in North America and Middle East & Africa due to increase in the oil & gas exploration and production activities. The invent of shale oil & gas has also led to the increase in the usage of these proppants. Moreover, frac sand is low cost, easily available and efficient, which led to its high usage as stimulation materials.
North America Region to Lead the Market
The United States is the oldest and one of the fastest growing countries in the oil & gas industry, and is exhibiting its dominance in the well stimulation materials market worldwide. A rapid growth in unconventional oil & gas activity in North America primarily in US has resulted in increasing consumption of chemicals used for various operations, and this trend is likely to continue in the next few years. The rapid exploitation of shale oil & gas reserves in United States contributed to this market growth and lower oil prices have likely had major impact on drilling, stimulation, and completion activities of such chemicals. After the commencement of shale gas production, the United States has become one of the largest oil producers, after Saudi Arabia. The United States holds 109 billion barrels, vis-a-vis Saudi Arabia's 168 billion barrels. The increasing drilling activity, oil & gas production, and use of advanced technologies, such as hydraulic fracturing, and enhanced oil recovery is likely to increase the demand for well stimulation materials in the US. According to the estimates, about 4.25 million barrels per day of crude oil were produced from tight oil resources in the United States in 2016, which was equal to approximately 48% of total US crude oil production in 2016. Stimulation chemicals are used at a large scale in Canada to encourage the flow of crude oil to the well, which is done by two popular techniques-acidizing and fracturing, also known as hydraulic fracturing. This hydraulic fracturing technique is proven government-regulated technology in Canada for (more than 60 years).
Notable Developments in the Market
May 2017: Baker Hughes introduced revolutionary multistage fracturing service for deep water
Major Players: Halliburton, Nalco, Baker Hughes, and Chevron Philips Chemicals, amongst others.
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