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Global Airborne ISR Market and Technology Outlook

by Asif Anwar | Sep 30, 2014

Amid a challenging budgetary environment, global militaries are faced with the challenge of reducing costs while maintaining and even enhancing defense capability in critical areas to counter unforeseeable asymmetric and conventional warfare threat environments while adjusting to shifting battle-space paradigms of net-centricity, cyber-warfare and electronic warfare.

Airborne ISR has been held as amongst the critical priority areas and a number of trends will underpin the future development and use of these assets. This will include the use of unmanned platforms that will continue to both complement and potentially substitute manned platforms in many ISR roles. At the same time, military customers are seeking to embody multiple mission capabilities in one platform and balance affordability with platforms that can offer flexibility, agility, efficiency and interoperability.

Despite budgetary constraints the global airborne ISR market will experience steady growth over 2013-2023, growing from $20.22 billion in 2013 to $27.81 billion in 2023 at a CAGR of 3.2%. The Asia Pacific (APAC) region is forecast to grow at the fastest pace though North America (USA and Canada) spending will still account for the largest overall airborne ISR budget.

The AEW&C segment is forecast to have the fastest growth in spending, largely driven by anticipated new spending by emerging countries as well as some renewed market demand from a few mature market countries. Airborne ISR platforms dedicated to electronic warfare (EW) missions spending will center on advanced countries including the USA, but also on major emerging countries including China, Russia and India. Another aspect of growth for this sector will be a push for UAS platforms with EW capabilities. Demand for maritime patrol aircraft will come from countries with large maritime boundaries while growth in the airborne ground surveillance and reconnaissance (S&R) market will be driven by emerging markets with procurements of both manned and unmanned systems, as well as a continued focus on using unmanned surveillance systems in the West.

An overview of the trends being observed for specific systems shows that AEW&C systems will increasingly be underpinned by solid-state T/R modules as radar systems transition to the use AESA and EW systems also look to utilize the advantages offered by solid-sate technologies. This will be accompanied by an increase in demand on data processing which will drive up the digital processing requirements from AEW&C systems over the forecast.

Clients of Strategy Analytics Advanced Defense Systems (ADS) service have full access to the reports and associated data model.

 

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