Commercial Satellite Imaging Market Overview
The global commercial satellite imaging market was valued at $2,411.8 million in 2017 and is forecasted to witness a CAGR of 14.2% during 2018 - 2023. The market growth can be mainly attributed to advancements in satellite imagery technologies and expansion of geospatial information analytics capabilities, across the globe. Commercial satellite imaging refers to the scanning of Earth using a satellite or high-flying aircraft to obtain georeferenced data.
GLOBAL COMMERCIAL SATELLITE IMAGING MARKET, BY TECHNOLOGY, $M (2013 - 2023)
The commercial satellite imaging market is gaining traction with the growing requirement for satellite imagery data analytics by industries that need critical information about various geospatial and environmental conditions for efficient resource management.
Based on application, the commercial satellite imaging market is classified into defense, natural resources, energy, infrastructure, location-based services (LBS), maritime, disaster management, and others, where “others” include surveillance, environmental conservation, research, and media and entertainment. Satellite imaging is widely being used in various applications of defense, which has been the largest application area, globally. Defense contributed around 49% revenue share to the market in 2017, on account of increased terrorism threats, high demand for homeland security solutions, and increased need for crime mapping. During the forecast period, the market is anticipated to register the fastest growth for disaster management.
The commercial satellite imaging market is also classified into optical and radar technologies. Optical technology accounted for a larger revenue share in the market in 2017. During the forecast period, radar technology is anticipated to be the faster-growing category in the market.
Globally, North America contributed the largest revenue share to the commercial satellite imaging market in 2017. The U.S. continues to be the largest contributor to the North American market. The growing adoption of commercial satellite imaging technologies by the defense sector in the U.S. to track terrorism activities is backing the market growth in North America. Also, the U.S. government’s stress on owning state-of-the-art technology and equipment is proving instrumental in the market growth. Besides, with the rising number of natural disasters, such as hurricanes and floods, the country is focusing on the adoption of monitoring and disaster management solutions.
Some of the major players operating in the North American commercial satellite imaging market are Digital Globe Inc., Planet Lab Inc., Spaceknow Inc., and Blacksky Global.
Commercial Satellite Imaging Market Dynamics
One of the key trends observed in the commercial satellite imaging market is hyperspectral image processing for automatic target detection. Many military applications involve the detection of objects or activities, such as the movement of military vehicles, through hyperspectral image processing. Besides, hyperspectral image sensors provide images containing both spatial and spectral information, which can further be used to detect activities such as military intrusion.
Also, with advancements in the agriculture management technology and increased use of precision agriculture techniques, information concerning crop yield variability has become crucial for effective and efficient crop management. High-resolution imagery of growing crops can be used to generate yield maps for both within-season and after-season crop management.
Technological advancements in satellite imaging, surge in the application of satellite imagery in various sectors, and growing demand for LBS are some of key factors driving the growth of the commercial satellite imaging market. Satellite imaging is used in LBS for various applications, including navigation, mobile advertisements, location-based health information, tourism, consumer tracking, and other location-based business intelligence (BI) activities. Besides, growing customer awareness and supportive government initiatives, especially, in developing countries such as India, China, Japan, and Mexico, are backing the adoption of LBS technologies.
The adoption of aerial imaging services as a substitute of commercial satellite imaging services is impeding the growth of the commercial satellite imaging market, across the globe. Aerial imaging offers several advantages over commercial satellite imaging, such as high-resolution images, frequent-flying capacity, and ability to perform in harsh weather conditions. Besides, satellite image processing is time-consuming due to the large area of the land covered, which, in turn, hinders the market growth.
Earth science analytics is one of the major factors creating ample growth opportunities for the players in the commercial satellite imaging market. Earth science analytics offers quality, data-driven petroleum geoscience predictions to the energy and petroleum industry. Besides, developments in technologies, such as electric propulsion technology and remote sensing technology, are offering growth opportunities to the market players. Remote sensors gather critical information by measuring electromagnetic radiations which are reflected, emitted and absorbed by objects in various spectral regions. This helps in studying the environment from distance using techniques such as satellite imaging, aerial photography, and radar.
Commercial Satellite Imaging Market Competitive Landscape
The intensity of rivalry in the commercial satellite imaging market is moderate. Most of the major vendors in the market are actively focusing on organic and inorganic growth strategies to increase their market share. Currently, the market is heading toward consolidation, with increasing partnerships and acquisitions among major players. MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates Ltd. completed the acquisition of DigitalGlobe in October 2017 to offer imagery, satellite, and geospatial solutions to government and commercial customers, globally.
Some of the other key players operating in the global commercial satellite imaging market are DigitalGlobe Inc., Galileo Group Inc., Spaceknow Inc., Environmental Systems Research Institute (Esri), and Airbus Defence and Space.