Technological Advancements and Focus on Upgrading Old Defense Systems to Boost Market Growth
The global warfare space has evolved at a rapid pace over the past two to three decades wherein tanks, guns, aircraft, etc., are being equipped with advanced weaponry and warfare systems. Technological advancements have played an important role in the development of modern warfare tools, including fire control radars, infrared lasers, and cyber weapons. These technologically advanced warfare tools are expected to replace conventional weapons over the next few years. The noteworthy growth in the demand for advanced warfare tools is a major factor that is projected to accelerate the expansion of the targeting pods market during the forecast period.
The defense sector around the world is increasingly leaning toward the deployment of optical targeting pods (OTPs) in aircraft. The onset of a precision targeting system wherein optical targeting facilitators designate, identify, and track targets using laser beams has gained considerable popularity across the world due to which, the demand for targeting pods is expected to witness consistent growth particularly in the first half of the forecast period. Progress in optical electro-targeting systems over the past three decades has played a critical part in boosting the demand for targeting pods. At the back of these factors, along with increasing defense budget of governments across the world, the global targeting pods market is expected to attain a market value of ~US$ 4 Bn by the end of 2027.
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High Adoption of Targeting Pods to Manufacture Defense Aircraft to Drive Targeting Pods Market
Targeting pods are increasingly being integrated in defense aircraft, as targeting pods play an imperative role in detecting and attacking targets during combat. In addition, targeting pods improve the efficiency and accuracy of laser-guided weapons– a major factor expected to augment the demand for targeting pods during the forecast period. Strides taken by optical electro-targeting systems worldwide over the past three decades have paved the way for the development of advanced targeting pods. These advancements have led to the development of downsized plug and play systems that are increasingly being used as force-multipliers in aircraft. The notable evolution in optical targeting systems wherein electro-optical sighting in daytime and infrared-sighting during the night are increasingly being used to ensure aircraft can operate around the clock is another factor that is anticipated to generate significant demand for targeting pods in the forthcoming decade. Technological advancements in the electronics space have enabled the production of cutting-edge optical targeting pods that include advanced features such as infrared radars, laser designators, and electro-optics.
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Market Players Strive to Design Accurate Targeting Pods
As governments across the world continue to express significant interest in upgrading their defense equipment and capabilities, players involved in the current targeting pods market are increasingly focused on the production of technologically advanced targeting pods. Market players are also likely to focus on entering into contracts with government bodies across the world to increase their market share and presence. Aircraft manufacturers are working in tandem with aerospace companies to launch state-of-the-art targeting pods with improved performance and capabilities. For instance, in 2019, Rafael Advanced Defense Systems entered a partnership with Israel Aerospace Industries’ Elta Systems to revamp the Reccelite XR and Litening 5 all-weather electric-optic targeting pods (EO) using an artificial synthetic aperture radar imagery payload.
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While the focus is projected to remain on upgrading the outdated technologies in defense aircraft, governments across the world are increasingly testing new targeting pods to achieve that objective. For instance, trial runs were started for the Royal Australian Air Force C-130J Hercules Transport Aircraft in which, targeting pods developed by Northrop Grumman Litening are installed. Players involved in the current market for targeting pods are expected to improve the functional aspects of their products to gain a competitive edge.
Demand for Targeting Pods to Decline amidst COVID-19 Pandemic
The COVID-19 pandemic is expected to disrupt several industries and the narrative is likely to remain the same within the defense sector. Companies operating in the current targeting pods market landscape are anticipated to introspect their business development strategies, supply chains, and long-term objectives and tweak the same in line with the ongoing situation. The pandemic is expected to affect the supply chains, business operations of several companies, and most importantly likely to dent the demand for defense equipment in the upcoming months. The nature of the business, size of the defense company, product range, and dependency on the supply chain are some of the major factors that are projected to influence the growth prospects of companies involved in the targeting pods market. Market players with automated manufacturing facilities are expected to be less affected. In addition, companies that rely on just-in-time production with large inventory stocks are also anticipated to cope with supply-side challenges for the short-term.
Targeting Pods Market: Overview
- According to Transparency Market Research’s latest report on the global targeting pods market for the historical period of 2017–2018 and the forecast period of 2019–2027, rising defense spending across the globe and technological advancements pertaining to targeting pods are expected to boost the global market during the forecast period
- In terms of revenue, the global targeting pods market is estimated to reach value of ~US$ 4 Bn by 2027, expanding at a CAGR of ~5% throughout the forecast period
- In terms of volume, the global targeting pods market is estimated to reach 1,485.00 units by 2027, expanding at a CAGR of ~6% during the forecast period
Rising Demand for Targeting Pods from Government Agencies: A Key Driver
- Targeting pods are tools used by combat or fighter aircraft to identify and attack the targets located on the ground. Key components of targeting pods are forward-looking infrared sensors and laser designators, which display the infrared image of the target and help in accurate delivery of ammunition.
- Due to these benefits associated with targeting pods, they are deployed onto a large number of fighter aircraft, including fixed as well as rotary-wing aircraft. Furthermore, a large number of air force agencies across the world are spending significant amounts on use of technologically advanced targeting pods in their aircraft.
- For instance, in 2019, Lockheed Martin Corporation, a manufacturer of targeting pods, announced that Oman Air Force had awarded a contract worth US$ 23 Mn to the company to provide advanced targeting pods for use in the F-16 combat aircraft
- Thus, rising demand for targeting pods from government agencies worldwide to enhance aircraft capabilities is expected to have a high positive impact on the global targeting pods market between 2019 and 2027
Advancements in Targeting Pods Technology: Latest Trend in Global Market
- Targeting pods are used for combat missions for surveillance and attack on the targets located on the ground. They can be deployed onto multiple platforms, including fighter aircraft, helicopters, and unmanned aerial vehicles i.e. UAVs. With growing security concerns, countries across the world are spending significant amounts on the upgrade and modernization of aircraft.
- With advancements in technology, the targeting pod technology is evolving and gaining improved capability so as to address requirements of more challenging combat missions. Several well-established manufacturers including Northrop Grumman Corporation, Thales Group, and Raytheon Company are continuously upgrading their targeting pods in order to serve the demand for technologically advanced targeting pods by air force agencies across the globe.
High Maintenance Costs Associated with Targeting Pods: A Major Challenge for Global Market
- Targeting pods are capable of monitoring and attacking fixed as well as moving targets located on the ground. Owing to this capability, a targeting pod is an important tool for fighter aircraft for use in a combat mission.
- Targeting pods deployed onto fighter aircraft cost high. A targeting pod costs approximately US$ 3 Mn. Furthermore, maintenance and repair costs associated with targeting pods are significantly high. This factor can hinder the global market for targeting pods during the forecast period. However, manufacturers are coming up with more advanced targeting pods. For instance, the SNIPER targeting pod comes with two-level maintenance design to ensure low cost of the device.
- Thus, high maintenance costs associated with targeting pods is a factor projected to have a low negative impact on the global targeting pods market during the forecast period
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