Antifreeze agents are used in oil & gas, automobiles, and heat exchangers in order to enable the heat transfer process even in cold weather conditions. Antifreeze agents are mixed in the water up to certain proportion. This mixture is commonly known as antifreeze coolant. Chemicals predominantly used as antifreeze agents for oil & gas include propylene glycol, ethylene glycol, methanol, and glycerol. Chemicals used in the manufacturing of anti-freeze agents are toxic in nature and are derived from conventional energy sources. These chemicals are not eco-friendly, due to which, efforts are being made to develop chemicals such as propylene glycol from renewable sources or materials such as corn, stover, oil bearing crops, and other bio-based resources.
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Based on product type, antifreeze agents can be segregated into propylene glycol, ethylene glycol, methanol, and glycerol. Ethylene glycol and propylene glycol are used on a large scale in oil & gas industry. Recycled ethylene glycol is manufactured from processes such as distillation, reverse osmosis, and ion exchange. It is gradually making its mark in the market as an oil and gas coolant. Research activities are underway in order to explore opportunities in utilization of 1,3 Propanediol and glycerin in the development of coolant-based fluid. Ethylene glycol is also known as ethylene alcohol, glycol, and clycol alcohol. It is primarily used in natural gas pipelines. These pipelines are usually used under the sea where the temperature is extremely low. During this process even salt water corrodes the pipelines. Ethylene glycol has natural anti-freezing properties which help in preventing blockages from freezing temperatures and in providing protection against corrosion. Ethylene glycol is also used in other applications such as fabrics, automotive, and packaging due to its exceptional anti-freezing properties. Ethylene glycol, when ingested, is hazardous to health, however, it is non-toxic for temporary skin contact
Propylene glycol is formulated with unique poly-organic acids in order to form a protective layer that prevents corrosion on metal component. Besides controlling the temperature, antifreeze agents can also be used in gas hydrate inhibition, as an anti-solvent in crystallization process, hydraulic fluid friction reducer, cross-linker, and gelling agent in the expanding hydraulic fracturing industry.
The market for antifreeze agents is expected to expand due to various factors such as cost-effective installation, availability, rise in oil and gas industry etc. The global antifreeze agents market is expanding and is projected to witness a considerable growth over the next five years. However, high cost of raw materials and increase in focus toward electric vehicles may restrain the growth of antifreeze agents for oil and gas market.
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Based on geography, the global antifreeze agents market for oil and gas can be classified into Asia Pacific, Europe, North America, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa. North America and Europe are the major markets for antifreeze agents, led by the upturn growth in oil and gas industry, rising concern for environment in these region. Asia Pacific is another prominent market for the antifreeze agents, owing to the growth of increase used of natural gas pipelines.
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