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Increasing Use of Advanced Materials and Emerging Solar Technologies to Propel the HAPS Market: Technavio

Advanced Materials and Emerging Solar Technologies

The global HAPS market will post a CAGR of 14% during the forecast period. A major driver that propels the growth of the global HAPS market is the cost effectiveness of HAPS as well as their long-endurance and augmented flight range capability.

Technavio in its latest market report on the global high-altitude pseudo satellites (HAPS) market has provided an analysis of the most important trends that is expected to impact the market outlook from 2017-2021. According to the research firm increasing use of advanced materials and emerging solar technologies will propel the HAPS market.

 Technavio defines an emerging trend as a factor that has the potential to significantly impact the market and contribute to its growth or decline.

The firm notes that the global HAPS market will post a CAGR of 14% during the forecast period. A major driver that propels the growth of the global HAPS market is the cost effectiveness of HAPS as well as their long-endurance and augmented flight range capability. Also, these platforms can be deployed rapidly. Further, unlike satellites, these platforms can be grounded for maintenance and retrofitting.

The top three emerging market trends driving the global HAPS market according to Technavio research analysts are:

  • Increasing use of advanced materials
  • Emerging solar technologies in aerospace industry
  • Rapid advancement in sensor fusion technology

Technavio states the stratospheric ozone layer, the operations face numerous challenges as the air at the area remains rarefied with a density of about 7% of the sea level. HAPS platforms may employ aerodynamic or aerostatic forces that can counteract the weight of the aerial platforms.

It is also indispensable to incorporate the design of such platforms with relatively advanced and lightweight materials so that the structural weight of HAPS platforms can be optimized. For instance, Google has been using various ultra-light materials for its stratospheric balloons.

The use of renewable energy has become essential to reduce the dependence on fossil fuel gas and oil. There is a concurrent global need for cheaper and obtainable energy resources to address the growing concern over climate change. Due to its abundance, solar energy remains the best available resource, the use of which is being encouraged by governments around the world for the development of solar airplanes.

“The aviation industry accounts for around 3% of the global warming, and about 80% of the global warming is associated with CO₂ emissions. Hence, there is growing pressure on the industry to reduce its overall CO₂ emissions to mitigate climate change. Private entities, in collaboration with governments, are in the process to change the approach of using solar technologies with innovative solutions to maximize the absorption of solar power,” said Avimanyu Basu, a lead analyst at Technavio for space research.

Rapid advancement in sensor fusion technology

“As the demand for sophisticated sensor platforms are increasingly growing within military operations, the requirement for deploying more trained professional for data parsing is also increasing. This entire process can considerably raise the operating expenses of the military agencies,” says Avimanyu.

Therefore, military agencies and technology providers are focusing on adopting alternative approaches like sensor fusion technology that advocates amalgamation of an assortment of sensors supported by integrated software that can deliver final products instead of the raw data set. In July 2015, the US DoD initiated a feasibility study for the development of multispectral sensor fusion technology with an aim to aid helicopter pilots in degraded visual environment conditions.

The HAPS market is consolidated with the presence of a few companies. The coming years will witness the entry of new market players that offer wide-ranging alternative powered HAPS, which will intensify the market’s competitive environment. To sustain the competition and increase their revenue shares, the vendors in this market space have the need to offer distinguishable solutions and also focus on maximizing the value proposition of their services, which will help attract customers from both the defense and commercial sectors.

The leading vendors in the market are –

  • Airbus
  • Alphabet
  • Facebook
  • Lockheed Martin
  • Tao Group
  • RosAeroSystems
  • Thales
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