Contact us Quick Help

Quick Help

Please complete the form below and the appropriate representative will call you for rapid assistance.

Notice Under California Consumer Privacy Act ("CCPA")
Please be aware that by registering with BASF to learn more about products and services, making purchases, or initiating other business transactions with BASF, BASF will be collecting certain personal information about you and your internet activity for specific business purposes. For a description of the information collected about you and the business purposes for which that information is used, please click here: Table III Data Collection Purpose. For further information about BASF's overall data privacy practices, please review BASF's Privacy Policy, which may be accessed here:

With beneficial properties ranging from elasticity and transparency to oil, grease and abrasion resistance, it’s no surprise that Elastollan® thermoplastic urethanes (TPUs) are commonly used in the manufacturing of wire and cable products.

While its positive characteristics is what makes Elastollan® TPUs a great fit for a wide variety of products, it’s vital to know which markets within the wire and cable industry have the most potential for growth.

To learn more about the latest market trends, we reached out to 30-year industry veteran Oliver Muehren, Global Key Account Manager of Elastollan® TPU for BASF Polyurethanes GmbH. Muehren is a world-leading expert in the wire and cable market and has watched it grow and change over the years.

We had the opportunity to sit down with Muehren and ask him what he believes will be the high-growth markets for the wire and cable industry in the next two to three years. The industry expert identified four key high-growth markets: industrial automation; transportation; non-halogenated flame retardant TPU; and high temperature and high voltage.

Oliver Muehren, Global Key Account Manager of TPU, BASF Polyurethanes GmbH.

Why do you see industrial automation as a high growth market for wire and cable in the next two to three years?

“There is a robust, global trend for investment into more fixed automated handling devices, so there will be an increasing need for robotic and drag chain cables. Flame retardancy and weld splatter resistance will be performance requirements for many of these applications.”

Where do you see opportunities for growth in the wire and cable market within the transportation sector?

“This market segment is an enormous driver and accelerator for Elastollan® TPUs. The global trend is spurred by the growing need for more electronic devices in the car, such as distance measuring sensors, rearview cameras, entertainment and multimedia systems, GPS, lane-assist systems, autonomous driving, pressure measuring, etc. Sensors and cameras require cables in the car, which are all connected with Elastollan® TPU-jacketed cables. Also, Elastollan® TPU is used in safety critical applications or the parts of the car where there may be extreme vibration, flying stones, high humidity, temperature changes and saltwater exposure; all of which require the performance and strength of Elastollan® TPU."

Why do you view non-halogenated flame retardant Elastollan® TPU as a high growth market?

“The market demand for halogen-free Elastollan® TPU has exploded due to more stringent product safety requirements, as well as stricter requirements for flame retardancy, and a trend towards reduced wall thicknesses of cables. Over the past several years, the tendency for higher flame retardancy has been a permanent companion of our daily work. When we started, we had two flame retardant halogen-free Elastollan® TPU grades in our product range. Today, we have over 25 grades of Elastollan® TPU that are non-halogenated.”

Where do you see market demand increasing for high temperature and high voltage applications?

“There will be incredible growth of the electric vehicles (EV) market, in both passenger cars and commercial trucks, and this will require new and innovative Elastollan® TPUs to enable quality wire and cable designs. Our customers will need an Elastollan® TPU for high voltage cables that can withstand continuous use at temperatures of 125°C and greater. Our next innovation will be to develop an Elastollan® TPU that can meet ISO 6722 Class D with 150°C LV112 Hot/Humid rating. Although there are a few applications where TPU has some disadvantages, such as high compression set and effects on polarity, BASF is bringing new solutions to the market that address these issues.”