The global intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) market to witness momentous growth in the coming years due to rising demand for these systems by the governments to fight terrorism. Improvements in defense budget is also expected to support market growth in future. These systems are extensively adopted in military and defense applications. They help defense forces to collect information regarding the enemy and analyze it quickly. Inability to gather and analyze information related to enemy intentions, movements, and capabilities can be a huge risk to military operations. This may, in turn, increase the demand for these systems in the military and defense sectors. Additionally, establishment of a single information environment (SIE) is necessary by creating a mesh of related networks in order to tackle the threat from enemy forces.
Intelligence and surveillance solutions are available in different forms, such as radar, images and electronic signals, optical, and infrared. They may range from handheld devices to orbiting satellites. Development of advanced unmanned vehicles and manned aircrafts can have a positive impact on market growth. Unmanned vehicles are employed for various missions, such as surveillance and reconnaissance, cargo transportation, and long duration missions, where gathering information is crucial. Unmanned ISR’s are preferred over manned counterparts as they are safer and have less risk to human life. UAVs find their applications in communication transfer, rescue operations, electronic attacks, combat search, and suppression of enemy air defense. Many countries across the world are adopting new ISR systems, such as Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) and reconnaissance of satellites.
Growing integration of Android and iOS-based devices has emerged as a key trend in the market, which may boost market growth in coming years. Military organizations are extensively using handheld devices based on these operating systems in order to increase the situational awareness of military troops. The sensors attached to ISR aircraft sense data and transmit the command to the base station in real-time, which is expected to bode well for the market.
The ISR systems generally comprise land-based, airborne, naval, space-based, and integrated systems. Land-based systems hold a prominent share in the market on account of high demand for the replacement of old systems. Airborne systems are anticipated to witness substantial growth in the years to come due to increasing demand for UAVs, sensors, geospatial solutions, synthetic aperture radars, cyber security, and mobility solutions. Space-based ISR is still in its developing phase as many nations across the world do not own satellite systems.
North America is a leading region in the market due to presence of key players and continuous technological developments. The region is significantly contributing to the development of airborne intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance equipment. The U.S. is a key contributor to regional market growth due to its high defense budget.
Asia Pacific is projected to emerge highly lucrative in the years to come owing to rising demand for networked communication, sensor upgrades, and electronic and intelligence warfare systems. Countries, such as India, China, and South Korea, are anticipated to increase their production due to enhancements in their military capabilities. Israel is one of the key operators of ISR systems in the region.
Key companies operating in the intelligence surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) market include Rockwell Collins, Serco Inc.; VT Milcom; Rockwell Collins; Elbit Systems; and Harris Corporation. The market is likely to offer several growth opportunities for the manufacturers to invest in R&D activities to produce affordable and effective systems. Participants are also focusing on transforming the current bulky and high-power consuming systems into more productive systems. Additionally, development of systems with reduced size and affordable price will boost market growth in the years to come.
For instance, Elbit Systems Ltd. introduced SigmaCell, a real-time active cellular intelligence system, designed to detect, identify, intercept, and expose details of target cellular devices and their exact location. The system can be effectively used to control criminal and terrorist activities. It can also be integrated with company’s cyber intelligence solutions, such as C4I systems, and Electronic Warfare and location systems.
Research Support Specialist, USA