Autonomous Military Aircraft Global Market Report 2020-30: Covid 19 Growth and Change

Autonomous Military Aircraft Global Market Report 2020-30: Covid 19 Growth and Change

  • June 2020 •
  • 200 pages •
  • Report ID: 5917854 •
  • Format: PDF
Major players in the autonomous military aircraft market are Boeing, Lockheed Martin Corp, GE Aviation, Northrop Grumman, BAE Systems, Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI), Elbit Systems, Dassault Aviation S.A., Denel Dynamics, and Airbus SE.

The global autonomous military aircraft market is expected to decline from $4.45 billion in 2019 to $3.73 billion in 2020 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of -16.16%. The decline is mainly due to the COVID-19 outbreak that has led to restrictive containment measures involving social distancing, remote working, and the closure of industries and other commercial activities. The entire supply chain has been disrupted, impacting the market negatively. The market is then expected to recover and reach $4.35 billion in 2023 at a CAGR of 5.23%.

The autonomous military aircraft market consists of sales of autonomous military aircraft which are guided autonomously from the ground, designed to attack surface targets with bombs or missiles and to destroy enemy targets in warfare. They carry sensors, target designators, offensive ordnance, and electronic transmitters among others.

The autonomous military aircraft market covered in this report is segmented by technology into remotely operated; semi-autonomous; autonomous and by type into fighter aircraft; bombers; reconnaissance and surveillance aircraft; airborne early warning aircraft; others.

In June 2019, Raytheon and United Technologies two of the world’s largest aerospace and defense companies planned to merge, which would create a giant with products that range from Tomahawk missiles and radar systems to jet engines. United Technologies, which makes electronics and engines for the commercial aviation sector, agreed to combine its business with Raytheon, missile systems and military equipment manufacturer. They also plan to combine research budgets and teams to explore futuristic technologies such as hyper sonics, directed energy weapons and artificial intelligence.

The major constraint of autonomous military aircraft is its vulnerability to jamming and spoofing. Securing GPS signals to ensure that they cannot be tampered by enemy forces acts as the inherent liability of GPS to jamming and spoofing and acts as a major challenge. In particular, communication links between the controller and the autonomous military aircraft are extremely vulnerable and the required target accuracy is difficult to achieve due to navigation errors. Due to this, the aircraft is misdirected and becomes either unusable or a threat to their personnel equipment. In 2019, Russian forces were involved in jamming GPS systems in the Middle East which affected the USA forces gathering in the region in advance of potential strikes on Iran. Such factors are expected to harm the demand for autonomous military aircrafts and may impact the growth of the market.

Autonomous military aircraft companies are making efforts to embed artificial intelligence (AI) and specialize in the development of software, including machine learning and AI that are core capabilities for these advanced systems. The ability of a system to decide on the most suitable action from sensor data input to fulfill the intent for operations by making guesses without human input can be achieved by AI technology. Through edge processing, aircraft do not have to send information to the cloud and thus may achieve greater performance, information security, and autonomy. U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is seeking to advance artificial intelligence technologies for individual and team aerial dogfighting tactics.

Increasing government funding on defense equipment such as autonomous military aircrafts to enhance the efficiency in military operations boosts the demand for the market. For instance, the Indian government has funded $395.12 million (INR 3,000 crores) to develop engines for unmanned combat aerial vehicles in 2018. Similarly, in 2019, the UK government funded $152.3 million (GBP 125 million) to support research on new technologies for autonomous aircrafts. Hence, the increasing government spending on autonomous military aircrafts is a key factor for driving the market.