Before we explore the market trends for satellite buses, let us briefly acquaint you with what a satellite bus is. Satellite buses are spacecraft buses carrying payloads or other space experiment products, and these buses form the structural component of any satellite and hold all the scientific instruments.
With time, the market for the satellite bus is experiencing significant changes. There are more and more demands for smaller satellite buses since they have improved performance and better payload carrying capacity. Moreover, increasing investments from different governments in the space sector further drive the market to thrive.
As mentioned, space industry changes are happening quite rapidly. Various market players are developing new technologies, propelling the market’s growth. Such increasing developments are taking the market in a new direction.
The satellite bus market will grow from $30.08 billion in 2021 to $54.33 billion in 2028—it’s projected to grow significantly in the coming five years. What factors drive this growth, and what are the different satellite bus market opportunities? Let’s find out below.
The Impact of COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic put a massive blow on the space and aviation industry. Small players in the market were hit the worst in the face of this plight. However, per the OECD (Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development), there is a significant chance of the smaller companies being eliminated from the scene due to rising costs and, consequently, the space industry getting more concentrated.
However, it does not end there. The Korea Association for the Promotion of Space Technology says that almost 50 percent of the space companies monitored in Korea attempt to recover their business in 2021 and take the market positively.
Despite early predictions that the space industry will keep deteriorating post-covid, moderate market growth in 2020-2021 has proved otherwise. Following are some of the factors impacting the market with regards to COVID-19.
- The budget of the players in the commercial space market has declined amidst the pandemic. Costs have been redirected towards assessing COVID-19 management and mitigating the spread of the virus.
- Ever since the commercial expansion of the space sector, it is expected that the new entrants will emphasize the prospects of small satellites. Moreover, global corporations are focusing more on the application constellations in the military and commercial industries.
- According to the US Department of Commerce, 92 percent of the companies with research and development for space are small companies. Despite facing a big hit, they are expected to normalize their trends post-COVID.
Latest Trends in the Satellite Bus and Space Market
In the last ten years, the space sector has experienced an increasing adoption rate of small satellites. Moreover, the adoption of satellite constellations is also encouraged. Such adoptions are promoted for ISR (intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance), Earth observation, satellite communication, and internet services.
Constellations have proximity to the Earth’s surface. Moreover, they also have higher reliability than conventional single satellites. Internet services through constellation-based systems will promote uniform coverage and decrease launch costs. But how will the satellite bus market look in 2028? In the following section, let us explore the different trends in the satellite market.
There are presently several driving factors that are helping in the moderate growth of the market. Firstly, numerous kinds of technologies are being promoted, such as nano, micro, and small spacecraft buses, to better the imaging solutions and capabilities of the satellites.
However, this has resulted in the higher cost of standard components. Moreover, there is an additional need for space infrastructures like ground monitoring stations and associated components. The factors are propelling the market towards its growth.
Secondly, commercial space exploration costs are expected to decrease since smaller launch vehicles are being promoted. They enable smoother access. Moreover, space launches are also expected to decrease because of the promotion of spacecraft able to handle more than one mission at a time.
It is also anticipated that 10,000 small satellites will be launched by 2026 in the low Earth orbit (LEO). This emphasizes the increasing relationship between government agencies and private satellite bus manufacturers. A significant factor driving market growth in the forecast period is the adoption of satellite buses in the commercial and military sectors.
Just like there are driving factors helping the market to grow, there are also restraining factors. The biggest restraining factor is the cost of identifying errors in satellite manufacturing. Several errors can arise due to the design complexity of the satellites, along with the proper integration of numerous satellite instruments.
As a result, the increased cost of satellite bus development is restraining the market growth.
The market for satellite buses is divided into different regions, namely North America, Asia Pacific, Europe, and other countries. This satellite bus market in each region is then subdivided into foreign countries and segments. Let us see how these regions performed separately.
- North America: Regarding the satellite bus market size, North America was the market leader in 2020 and was valued at $12.15 billion. This was due to the increased expenses in the space sector and the rising number of satellite launching contracts.
- Asia Pacific: This region is expected to witness tremendous growth in the forecast period due to increased investment in the space sector from countries like Korea, China, and India.
- Europe: Europe will witness remarkable growth as well. In 2022-2028, the region will expand expenditure from countries like Germany and the UK.
- Other countries: On the other hand, other countries will experience moderate growth with the help of expenditure from countries like UAE, Israel, and Saudi Arabia.
The market for satellite buses has developed a lot in the last decade. But, it is expected to grow more in the coming few years. We have provided a satellite bus market analysis and highlighted a few market trends and the significant factors driving the increased growth.