Dimethyl Ether- Uses, Applications, and Market

November 2022

The automotive sector has experienced significant growth in recent years due to increased automobile sales in developing countries. Sales of dimethyl ether, a gasoline additive for cars, are being negatively impacted as a result. Methoxymethane, sometimes referred to as dimethyl ether, is a naturally occurring substance with the formula CH3OCH3.
Fundamentally, it is created by gasifying hydrocarbons to create synthesis gas. The synthesis gas is changed into methanol and dehydrated using a copper-based catalyst to produce ether. Dimethyl ether is used in various applications, including transportation gasoline, propellant, chemical feedstock, aerosol, and refrigerant. LPG blending has grown in importance as used in recent years. Because of its high cetane number, low toxicity, and superior flammability, it is also a suitable LPG replacement. DME can also be produced using various raw sources, such as wood, methanol, and syngas, which enables higher demand and output.
The tremendous increase in demand from the automobile market and stringent laws against high-emission fuels in the automotive sector all contribute to the rise in demand. Due to its greater cetane rating, it offers a superior ignition value to reduce environmental pollution. The dimethyl ether market is anticipated to be driven during the projected period by most developing economies' steadily expanding vehicle market.
Global Dimethyl Ether Market Industry Insights

  • Aerosol propellants are also widely employed in medical spray products, leading to an increase in the use of dimethyl ether in these propellants. People use medical sprays more frequently due to their rising sales and capacity to rapidly treat damaged areas.

  • Rising Exports of Aromatic Ethers - The International Trade Centre’s (Trade map) records show that the value of China's exports of aromatic ethers in 2021 was USD 133,809 thousand, up from USD 124,434 thousand in the previous year.

  • DME is increasingly used in LPG blending due to its general use in home cooking and heating appliances. During the projection period, the market is expected to be driven by government and regional regulatory bodies encouraging renewable energy sources to cut CO2 emissions, particularly in India and China.

  • Increase in LPG Plants: For instance, Indian Oil Corp (IOC) expects to produce 80 million LPG cylinders annually by 2030, an increase of almost 52%.

  • Demand For Electric and Non-Electric Vehicles is Growing- Dimethyl ether is widely employed in electronic and hybrid automobiles. In India, it was found that there are only about 13,34,000 electric vehicles in operation compared to about 27,80,50,000 non-electric cars.

The dimethyl ether market was estimated to be worth USD 8 billion in 2021 and is expected to reach USD 29 billion by 2030, growing at a CAGR of 18.35%.
COVID-19 Impact

The potential for expansion of the dimethyl ether market share for the forecast period of 2021–2030 that followed the pandemic year 2020 was impacted by the global spread of the new coronavirus pandemic. There was an urgent need for the market to apply strict laws and implications that would limit social gatherings and, as a result, lower the virus positivity rate because the rate of pandemic and infection propagation was high.
However, the government authorities and international market participants have been expanding their investments to create new items and services that would help in portfolio enhancement and enhance the chances of both the present and future market participants.
Latest developments in Dimethyl Ether Market

  • SHV Energy and KEW Technology established Circular Fuels Ltd. as a joint venture in March 2021. This project aimed to build renewable dimethyl ether (rDME) manufacturing facilities and turn recycled and renewable carbon feedstock into sustainable liquid gas.

The Oberon Fuels, a manufacturer of renewable dimethyl ether, expanded its crew in August 2020 to build the first renewable dimethyl ether throughout the world.

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