The Military Laser Systems Market is expected to exhibit a CAGR of over 7% during the forecast period.
- The increase in military expenditure by several nations across the world is propelling the growth of the market. The military applications of lasers are increasing. Lasers are used by soldiers in laser designators, sights, and rangefinders and in border security in threat and perimeter breach detection systems and in threat mitigation and weapon guidance.
- In addition, laser directed energy weapon systems are a very cost-effective, high speed and highly accurate method to take out aerial threats compared to using a highly expensive missile to destroy incoming threats such as drones. Their relative ease of use and technological superiority is driving their adoption in several weapon programs across the globe.
Key Market Trends
Directed Energy Weapons Segment Projected to Exhibit the Highest CAGR During the Forecast Period
The directed energy weapons segment currently has the largest share in the market. The segment is also projected to grow with the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The innovations in multiple kilowatt laser combination techniques, beam control technology for energy adjustment, and the use of artificial intelligence are propelling the growth of laser directed energy weapons. Defense firms and organizations are investing in the development and research of kilowatt laser defense systems to provide cover against aerial threats. The directed energy weapons segment will see a surge in the future owing to the arms race between the global military powerhouses. The United States plans to install laser defense weapon system HELIOS (High Energy Laser and Integrated Optical-Dazzler with Surveillance) on its destroyers from 2021. These systems will enhance the defense against hypersonic projectiles that can evade even the AEGIS missile defense system, thereby enhancing the aerial defense capabilities of the military. Such developments are expected to propel the growth of the segment during the forecast period.
North America to Continue its Market Dominance
North America held the largest share in the market in 2019, primarily due to the high demand for these systems from the US. The country has put forth several programs in recent years aimed at developing laser-based weapon technologies. The military is currently aiming to install various laser-based weapon and defense systems on ground vehicles, ships, as well as aircraft. In 2019, the US Army started working on equipping Black Hawk and Chinook helicopters with Northrop Grumman’s DIRCM (Directional Infrared Countermeasure) systems to provide protection against man-portable air defense systems and other heat-seeking projectiles. Additionally, the US Army is also developing the most powerful laser weapon to date, under the Indirect Fires Protection Capability-High Energy Laser (IFPC-HEL) program. The 300-kilowatt weapon, once successfully developed, will be enough to destroy targets as large as incoming cruise missiles. The US Army plans to demonstrate the weapon capability in 2022 and aims to deliver four operational, 300 kW-class IFPC-HEL prototypes integrated on tactical vehicles to a platoon by 2024. Such developments are expected to boost the market growth of North America during the forecast period.
Prominent players in the military laser systems market include Lockheed Martin Corporation, MBDA, The Boeing Company, Raytheon Technologies Corporation, and Northrop Grumman Corporation, among others. The growing adoption of military laser systems across the globe is accredited to growing collaboration and partnerships between various defense manufacturers. The use of laser technologies is growing rapidly in the military, with a lot of scope for innovation. Players are developing several types of advanced laser systems to attract new customers. In February 2020, Rafael tested its Drone Dome C-UAS (Counter Unmanned Aerial System) during which the system identified and intercepted multiple moving UAVs using a high-powered laser beam. The development of such technologies will help the growth of the players in the market during the forecast period.
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