According to the Market Statsville Group (MSG), the global Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) market size is expected to grow from USD 1,531.6 million in 2021 to USD 4,103.6 million by 2030, at a CAGR of 15.1% from 2022 to 2030. Unmanned surface vehicles (USVs) are vessels that operate on the water’s surface without the presence of any crew members. These vessels are outfitted with a range of sensors and setups that allow them to be remotely controlled by an operator on shore or another vessel. USVs are used for various commercial, scientific, and military applications. USVs are more cost-effective for undertaking hydrographic surveys and oceanographic research than other research boats. It also acts as the first line of defense during various military operations, lowering the danger to defense troops. Unmanned surface vehicles (USV) are machines that can be controlled remotely from the sea’s surface. They’re also referred to as autonomous surface vehicles. The unmanned surface vehicle (USV) is used to check the pollution levels in the water. These are less costly and more versatile than weather ships or research vessels. Unmanned surface vehicles (USVs) operate autonomously and are available in full and semi-automated modes.
The primary drivers of market expansion are the increased need for water quality monitoring, maritime security and hazards, and the requirement for ocean data and mapping. With fresh water sources becoming contaminated despite government efforts to avoid it, such vehicles will be extremely useful in monitoring and preventing contamination. The availability of low-cost autonomous underwater vehicles (AUV) and remotely operated underwater vehicles (ROV) is projected to restrict market expansion.
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COVID–19 Impact on the Global Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Market
The recent coronavirus pandemic severely influenced the Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Market. The COVID-19 pandemic has influenced the operations and profitability of the Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Market. Many countries implemented some form of quarantine to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. This affects product logistics and raw material distribution across the value chain. Furthermore, the economic crisis caused by the pandemic has caused end-user industries to cut their operational rates. Financing constraints, lockdowns, and travel restrictions have affected global industry and major end-user markets.
On the positive side, the market has expanded in healthcare and pharmaceutical applications. The medical and pharmaceutical sectors are thriving amid the pandemic. Many countries have increased their expenditure on healthcare, which will assist the medical and pharmaceutical businesses in the near future. PEG serves as a dispersant, delivery liquid, solvent, filler and ointment, and laxative. As a result, demand for Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) surged in the healthcare and pharmaceutical sectors, allowing the industry to flourish even during the pandemic.
Global Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Market Dynamics
Drivers: Growing demand for ocean data mapping and water quality monitoring
Demand for the unmanned surface vehicle market is increased due to Advancements in research and development efforts in the hydrography and oceanography fields, as well as a growing requirement for monitoring anti-submarine warfare and ocean quality. Extensive contamination in ocean-fresh waters, the need to prevent contamination, and the growing demand for reliable, highly advanced, and dependable USVs, particularly in the military arena, are the primary drivers driving the growth of the global unmanned surface vehicle market. In the military domain, unmanned surface vehicles are employed for mine hunting and locating seaborne targets. Moreover, USVs are regarded as critical vehicles for use in hydrographic surveys. Using tiny USVs in tandem with conventional survey vessels as a force multiplier seeks to double survey coverage and reduce on-site time.
Restraints: USVs’ lack of collision detection capability
The inability of USVs to detect collisions and the availability of low-cost unmanned underwater vehicles and remotely operated underwater vehicles are anticipated to impede the growth of the global unmanned surface vehicle market.
Low-cost alternatives, such as unmanned underwater vehicles (UUVs), are expected to have a negative impact on the growth of the unmanned surface vehicle market during the forecast period.
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Opportunities: Introduction of AI Technologies
The increasing use of USVs in military applications such as border and littoral zone patrol, submarine hunting, minesweeping, ISR, offensive capabilities, and seaborne targets is expected to drive growth. The market will likely benefit from the integration of artificial intelligence (AI) in unmanned naval vehicles and military actions for command-and-control applications during the forecast period. Furthermore, the growing commercial applications of USVs in oceanography, exploration and environmental sciences are expected to drive market expansion in the coming years. The rising demand for USVs in the oil and gas industry is expected to provide lucrative commercial opportunities for the market.
Scope of the Global Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Market
The study categorizes the unmanned surface vehicle (USV) market based on mode of operation, size and application at regional and global levels.
By Mode of Operation Outlook (Sales, USD Million, 2017–2030)
- Autonomous Surface Vehicle
- Remotely Operated Surface Vehicle
By Size Outlook (Sales, USD Million, 2017–2030)
By Application Outlook (Sales, USD Million, 2017–2030)
- Scientific Research
By Region Outlook (Sales, USD Million, 2017–2030)
- North America
- The Netherlands
- Czech Republic
- Rest of Europe
- Asia Pacific
- South Korea
- Australia & New Zealand
- Rest of Asia Pacific
- South America
- Rest of South America
- The Middle East & Africa
- Saudi Arabia
- South Africa
- Northern Africa
- Rest of MEA
Defense segment accounts for the largest market share by application
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Based on the application, the unmanned surface vehicle (USV) market is divided into defense, commercial, and scientific research. The defense had the largest market share owing to the Increasing demand for unmanned surface vehicles for use in anti-submarine warfare and special operations forces in critical missions. Naval gunnery training, firefighting, and rescue operations are a few major factors driving their adoption in the aforementioned application areas. Market vendors include technologies that allow for real-time picture transmission and distant visual verification and recording of evidence. For instance, liquid Robotics’ Wave Gliders may be modified from a remote location. It also comes with infrared sensors for use at night.
Remotely operated surface vehicle segment accounts for the highest CAGR during the forecast period by mode of operation
Based on the mode of operation, the unmanned surface vehicle (USV) market is divided into autonomous surface vehicle and remotely operated surface vehicle. The remotely operated surface vehicle sector is expected to develop at the fastest CAGR during the forecast period due to the benefits of autonomous control available through remote control, but with people in the loop on the other end of a network connection. Despite ethical concerns that remote control technology desensitizes operators to violence and inflicts unwanted collateral damage, this present use case establishes a good precedent for how remote control may be used at sea. Remote control, on the other hand, requires a steady, durable link, which may be unavailable in an electromagnetic (EM) disputed environment where communication signals may be suppressed or betray the ship’s whereabouts.
North America accounts for the highest market share by Region
Based on the regions, the global unmanned surface vehicle (USV) market has been segmented across North America, Asia–Pacific, Europe, South America, and the Middle East & Africa. North America is expected to grow at the highest market share due to increased government, private sector, and academic spending on innovation and R&D on marine system technology exploration. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Research Office and the Office of Naval Research do a significant amount of field research (ONR). The ONR has aided in the development of USVs such as the mine-detecting unmanned influence sweep system (UISS), which is carried by a Textron-developed common unmanned surface vehicle (CUSV).
The UISS can survive rough seas and detect and explode underwater mines to protect Navy personnel and manned boats from detonation. The University of Washington’s Seaglider Fabrication Center, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute are among the educational and study organizations that routinely do research on ocean technology, products, and processes.
As a result, such market trends are likely to assist North America is dominating the overall market.
Key Market Players in the Global Unmanned Surface Vehicle (USV) Market
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The global unmanned surface vehicle (USV) market is highly competitive, with key industry players adopting strategies such as product development, partnerships, acquisitions, agreements, and expansion to strengthen their market positions. Most market companies focus on expanding operations across regions, augmenting their capabilities, and building strong partner relations.
Major players in the global unmanned surface vehicle (USV) market are:
- 5g International, Inc.
- Asv Global
- Atlas Elektronik GmbH
- ECA Group
- Elbit Systems Ltd.
- Liquid Robotics, Inc.
- Maritime Tactical Systems, Inc.
- Rafael Advanced Defense Systems Ltd.
- SeaRobotics Corporation
- Teledyne Technologies Inc.
- Textron Inc.