Guide to Pneumatic Conveying in 2024

Pneumatic conveying systems facilitate efficient and hygienic manufacturing in dozens of industries worldwide. And as the population continues to grow, the need for materials, medicines, foods and beverages, and other resources will increase in kind.

To successfully meet both market and societal demand, it’s vital for manufacturers to stay up-to-date with changes and trends in the pneumatic conveying industry. In this blog, we examine the global market for pneumatic conveying systems, including key market drivers, thriving regions, key challenges, and competitive strategies from industry leaders.


Market size and growth

  • report from IMARC showed that the global pneumatic conveying systems market size in 2023 was valued at USD 31.5bn. This is expected to rise to USD 48.0bn by 2032, with a market growth rate of 4.6%.
  • Among all industries, the food industry currently holds the largest market share for pneumatic conveying systems. As a dust-free and contamination-free method of materials processing, pneumatic conveying provides safe, hygienic transportation of ingredients while maintaining their quality and integrity.
  • Among pneumatic conveying technologies (positive pressure, vacuum pressure, and combination), positive-pressure conveying dominates the market. This is thought to be because it can handle a wide range of materials, including fragile products, with minimal energy consumption, material leakage, and airborne dust particles. As of 2022, this technology holds 49.85% of market revenue and is expected to experience growth of 6.0% CAGR from 2023-2030.
  • Among pneumatic conveying operations (dilute phase and dense phase), dilute-phase conveying dominates the market. This low-impact process transports materials gently, which reduces degradation and can accommodate a wide range of pipeline configurations. As of 2022, dilute-phase pneumatic conveying holds 73.11% of overall revenue, which is expected to grow 5.9% CAGR from 2023-2030.


Key market drivers

  • Pneumatic conveying is increasingly used in the production of pharmaceuticals. It plays a vital role in tablet compression and encapsulation processes, as well as coating, granulation, and blending ingredients to ensure uniformity. This increase may be due to a growing global population and the increased demand for medicines following the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020.
  • Rising environmental concerns have led to the creation of strict rules regarding waste handling and disposal. The need to minimize waste and leakage has created further demand for fully enclosed pneumatic conveying systems.
  • Advancements in technology have driven the integration of Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) into pneumatic conveying systems. This has increased their efficiency, reliability, and automation capabilities, promoting adoption across industries.


Regional analysis

  • Many sources report that Asia Pacific is both the largest and fastest growing market, with the majority of demand coming from China and India. Countries in this region are undergoing rapid industrialization and infrastructural development activities, creating a huge demand for pneumatic conveying systems across industries. Rising populations have also created a greater need for chemical, medicine, plastic, and food and beverage manufacturing.
  • On the other hand, a report by Grand View Research suggests that Europe held a dominant market share of 30.50% in 2023. This regional market is also expected to grow in response to rising demand for hygienic methods of food transfer. That includes new Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulations regarding indirect food contaminants.
  • Regardless of which region is dominant, it’s agreed that Asia Pacific is expected to exhibit the highest CAGR, estimated at 6.3% during 2023-2030.
  • There may be a profitable opportunity in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) on the horizon. With the impending decline of the oil and gas industry, the Abu Dhabi Economic Vision 2030 has set goals to grow the non-oil sector by over 7.5% each year. Instead, its focus is shifting to industries such as manufacturing, which require safe, efficient, low-waste processes such as pneumatic conveying.


Challenges and restraints

  • The increasing demand for pneumatic conveying systems carries with it a need for greater energy consumption. Unless countries can secure reliable, sustainable, and affordable power supplies, this could restrict the speed of market growth.
  • Even with a rise in automation technologies, skilled professionals are still required to operate and maintain pneumatic conveying systems. Currently, the need for these professionals outweighs their availability, leaving many manufacturers with a major skill gap.
  • Installing and integrating automated systems can be expensive. This could prevent small and medium-sized enterprises from establishing themselves or attaining notable growth. As a result, the pneumatic conveying industry could become further consolidated into a small number of powerful hands.
  • The depletion of natural mining resources and movement toward clean energy options presents a risk for the metals and mining industry. Add to this the need for bigger dust collection systems, and this particular sector could shrink for pneumatic conveying.


Competitive strategy

  • According to Fortune Business Insights, major players in the global pneumatic conveying system market include:
    • ACS Valves
    • Atlas Copco
    • AZO GmbH + Co. KG
    • Coperion
    • Dynamic Air Inc.
    • Flexicon Corporation
    • Hillenbrand
    • IEP Technologies
    • Nilfisk
    • Progressive Products Inc.
    • SPEC Engineering
    • VAC-U-MAX
    • WAMGROUP S.p.A
    • Zeppelin Systems USA
  • To strengthen their position and expand into new territories, many market players are engaging in mergers and acquisitions. Atlas Copco, for example, announced its acquisition of Reno A/S. This has allowed Atlas to increase its market presence in Denmark.
  • Leading companies are also cementing their competitive edge by investing in innovative technologies. For example, Schenck Process developed their patented E-finity system, a low-pressure continuous dense-phase conveyor. This system was designed to convey abrasive or fragile materials at low, stable velocities to minimize product degradation and equipment wear.


Summarizing the pneumatic conveying landscape in 2024

As it stands, the pneumatic conveying industry continues to thrive as market size grows and positive growth and CAGR rates are expected. This could be due to the rising population’s increased demand for medicines, food, construction materials, and other vital resources, all of which must be processed efficiently. However, limited energy supplies, dwindling natural resources, and a lack of skilled professionals could make meeting this demand difficult.

While smaller companies can struggle to make their market in the industry, improvements in automation and integration technologies are driving greater efficiency. These advances, combined with a need to improve environmental factors, could represent a major opportunity, especially in dominant regions like Asia Pacific and Europe.

As the pneumatic conveying landscape continues to evolve, key players are striving to outpace one another technologically and secure market presence on a global scale through mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships. This will allow them to solidify their market position and prepare them to profit from changing needs around the world.

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