Inspection Drones Market Analysis of Key Trend, Industry Dynamics and Future Growth 2027

With their earliest use dating back to 1839 in the form of unmanned balloons that evolved mostly for military attacks, the non-military use of drones is a relatively new concept, as recent as 2006. Government agencies started employing inspection drones for disaster relief, wildfire fighting, and border surveillance, whereas, agricultural corporations began employing drones for the inspection of pipelines and spraying pesticides on agricultural farms.

In the years following, as unmanned aerial technology continued to improve in the military sector, the same made its way into commercial applications too. Beyond this, the recreational use of inspection drones is relatively new. The safety aspect of inspection drones that the Federal Aviation Administration needed to be convinced about is the main reason behind the delay in the growth of the inspection drones market space.

However, an announcement made by Amazon in 2013 for considering drones for delivery created big news in the inspection drones market. This marked a stepping stone for growth within the drone inspection space. Sensing copious opportunities, the inspection drones market is estimated to grow at a whopping ~23% CAGR between 2019 and 2027, predicts a market research publication by Transparency Market Research (TMR).

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Drone inspection offers considerable economic and human safety advantages. Drone inspection not only reduces heavy costs related to constructing traditional access methods, but also nearly offsets the risks of manned labor working at night. At present, drone inspection is the preferred method for visual surveys across a wide range of industries.

Contrary to manned visual surveying, drone inspection is considered much safer and accurate. For such reasons, blue-chip companies are now beginning to realize the benefits of drone inspection that are within the scope of their annual maintenance and repair budgets.

The military and defense landscape has been long using inspection drones for border security purposes. Besides this, several commercial areas of economic and human welfare now find the use of inspection drones, such as construction and infrastructure industries. Critical infrastructure such as bridges in urban areas require periodic inspections, which are mandated by various regulations in most countries to safeguard against cracks, rust, or any other damages.

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In addition, increased demand in the inspection drones market for critical infrastructure inspection is mainly attributed to the fact that, drone inspection has emerged as a messiah for several pain points within the inspection and survey space. For instance, in the U.K, from the perspective of public health and safety, figures pertaining to work-related fatalities are disturbing. On an average, 25% workplace injuries are related to falls from heights, which are decreasing as compared to previous years.

Contrary to manual inspection that involves a crew of inspection professionals and heavy machinery, along with the risk of human due to from dangerous heights, inspection involving drones alleviates these challenges. For such reasons, unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) are becoming an integral part of infrastructure inspection practices, influencing emerging trends in the inspection drone landscape. Today, professional drones that are used are agile, cost-effective, and can perform tasks proven to be dangerous to be carried out by humans.

In such a scenario, the new paradigm of drone-based inspections is a safe alternative for risky jobs of the surveillance of high structures. Serving such critical advantages, the demand for inspection drones in critical infrastructure inspection applications is predicted to rise at a stellar 22.7% CAGR during the forecast period. However, drone-based inspection, which is still a new and emerging concept, will take some time before it becomes established, as its penetration is the most in the border security sector, which accounts for nearly half the revenue share of the inspection drones market.