The sonar systems market is estimated to register a CAGR of 8.58% during the forecast period (2020-2025).
- The increasing naval feet of the armed forces due to the procurement of new ships and submarines and the upgrade programs for the existing naval vessels are driving the growth of the sonar systems market.
- The growth of the market is also attributed to the rise in maritime trade, increasing oil and gas exploration, dredging and fishing operations. The countries that are dependent on basic fish finders are expected to generate a high demand for advanced sonar devices during the forecast period.
- Technological advancements may lead the countries across the world to procure advanced sonar systems for their naval fleet, and this is expected to propel the growth of the market studied in the near future.
- However, concerns related to the impact of sonar systems on marine animals has been restraining the market’s growth over the past decade.
Key Market Trends
The Defense Segment is Projected to Dominate the Market During the Forecast Period
Currently, the defense sector has the highest share of all the segments. The increasing deployment of nuclear submarines around the world and the development and deployment of unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) for military operations increased the threat for countries surrounded by water borders. The increasing political tensions over the oceans, like the ones in the South China Sea and the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, led the countries along these water bodies to develop their anti-submarine warfare capabilities. To capitulate on the increasing demand for anti-submarine capabilities and sonar systems, various companies are engaged in the manufacturing of sophisticated sonar systems, such as diver detection, towed, hull-mounted, dunking sonars, sonobuoys, and other sonar-based surveillance systems for the global naval forces. Additionally, unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs) evolved into viable tools capable of revolutionizing and transforming anti-submarine warfare (ASW) through their advanced sensing capabilities. These systems feature active sonar systems that are highly beneficial for the collection of data to detect, characterize and track adversary/enemy submarines at long ranges. Moreover, several nations realized the potential security threats caused by foreign UUVs in their waters, encouraging them to develop low-frequency sonars to accurately detect the presence of UUVs with lower acoustic signature levels. With the rapid growth in the fleet of navies, the need for the detection of enemy vessels is increasing. This created a parallel demand for new and advanced sonar systems, like 3D multibeam scanning sonars, whose potential for growth is much higher in the defense sector than in the commercial sector.
In 2019, Asia-Pacific was the Largest Market for Sonar Systems
Currently, the Asia-Pacific region has the highest share in the market, and it is expected to register the highest CAGR during the forecast period. This is primarily due to the increasing procurement of new naval ships and submarines, along with the upgradation of existing fleets. The Chinese navy is undergoing a huge naval fleet expansion, which is projected to make China surpass Russia as the largest navy in the world in terms of frigates and submarines by 2020. China is continually emphasizing on increasing its anti-submarine warfare (ASW) capabilities from coastal defense to blue-water operations. With the increasing tensions in the South China Sea and the Indian Ocean, along with the growing naval fleet of China, countries in Asia-Pacific are all developing their anti-submarine warfare capabilities. The countries are increasing their investments into ASW equipment, like sonar systems, to enhance their situational awareness in the sea. For instance, in 2017, Japan became the first nation to conduct large-scale experimental mining of a dead hydrothermal vent off the coast of Okinawa, inside Japan's national waters, by dispatching a torpedo-shaped underwater drone equipped with special sonar to map it. Such developments in terms of, both, vessel building and the upgradation of sonar systems, primarily in the Asia-Pacific region, are expected to generate the highest demand for sonar systems during the forecast period.
The sonar systems market is highly fragmented, with a wide range of players providing various types of sonar systems, like single-beam sonar systems, multi-beam sonar systems, and full-circle scanning systems, for applications, like fishing, deep-sea exploration, shallow water detection and enemy detection, while tracking and detecting attacking torpedoes and missiles. Companies, such as General Dynamics Corporation, Thyssenkrupp AG, Kongsberg Gruppen ASA, Aselsan AS, and Thales Group are some of the prominent players in the market studied. Local companies, supported by defense budgets and government funding, are also developing indigenous systems, in order to reduce dependency on outsiders, while adding a layer of secrecy on capability and keeping funds within the country. Product innovations by various global and regional companies increased the competition in the market, and smaller players are expected to strengthen their presence in the market through innovations during the forecast period.
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