The development of electronic warfare (EW) systems, especially to detect and counter weapons, has witnessed a significant development in the past decade, due to the high effectiveness and widespread use of electronics and associated equipment in weapon systems. The implementation of these electronic systems are expanding in variety, with increased capability and sophistication. The superior capability of electronic warfare systems in a country’s defence, has now become one of the vital elements that can decide the outcome, in the event of a conflict.
It has been estimated that over the next ten years, there would be extensive investments into the development and production of EW systems such as electronic countermeasures (ECM), radar warning receivers (RWRs), and electronic support measures (ESM). Concurrently, it has been predicted that there would be high demand for airborne electronic attack and airborne ECM technologies, which are expected to be a big part of the EW market.
Of late the electronic warfare systems for both naval and airborne platforms, are equipped with emerging technologies, which enhance their capabilities. These systems focus on jamming and identification of radar and other electronic signals that enable operations in the enemy territories. For instance, the US SEWIP program focuses on the upgrade of AN/SLQ-32 EW system for defense against the cruise or guided missiles and other radar threats. For airborne platforms, the Next Generation Jammer is intended to strengthen the software driven approach to these systems. This can be employed across a range of platforms, including the next generation stealth fighter planes and the bombers and other special mission aircraft.
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The Leading Market Players in the global electronic warfare market primarily include BAE Systems, General Dynamics, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, Raytheon, FishEye, Mercury Systems, SAAB, Thales, and Ultra Electronics.
Industry/ Innovation/ Related News:
2015:- BAE systems signed a contract with US Navy, worth $11 million, to develop next-generation EW technologies. The contract covered the development of full-spectrum staring electronic support receiver (FSSR) with instantaneous direction finding (IDF).
March, 2015:- Mercury Defense Systems signed a contract with the US Navy worth $2 million to design aircraft-based EW jammers.
2014:- US Army started a networked electronic warfare remotely operated (NERO) project funded by Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Organization (JIEDDO). NERO is a combat-proven communications electronic attack surveillance and reconnaissance (CEASAR) jamming capability currently deployed on a C-12 aircraft.
Electronic Warfare Market – Competitive Analysis
The market is highly fragmented with a limited number of large- and small-sized players between whom the competition is intense. Most vendors operate across product lines offering products to multiple industries, certain vendors have entered more niche segments, providing a limited number of products to the defense industry. Vendors have started to shift their manufacturing bases to APAC for greater cost-effectiveness. In addition, the need for an enhanced response time is expected to gain increased market traction during the forecast period. This drives vendors to either acquire or set up manufacturing facilities in APAC. The need for higher revenue and customer base expansion has forced global players to enter into alliances with local players to serve end users effectively.
However, as international players increase their footprint in the market, with their huge infrastructure and R&D support, regional vendors find it increasingly difficult to compete in terms of reliability, on-time delivery, and price. The competitive environment in the market is likely to intensify further due to an increase in product/service extensions, technological innovations, and M&A.
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Electronic Warfare Market – Regional Analysis
The electronic warfare market has witnessed tremendous growth in the recent years. There has been an increased demand, especially in the regions of Middle East and Asia-Pacific, combined with the advancing technologies. Of late, the electronic warfare, especially ECM’s capabilities, are sought by the military forces, globally, for both offensive and defensive operations. The protection of troops and hardware, are particularly at the centre of the quest for electromagnetic spectrum (EMS) dominance.
A major portion of the defence budgets of a number of developed and developing nations are invested into the electronic warfare programs that can add to their superior offensive and defensive capabilities. As the concept of the electromagnetic spectrum evolves around the world, new defence systems, particularly the ECM, must cover the entire spectrum.
Globally, exstensive research and development are being carried out in the development of new and more powerful high-tech electronic warfare jamming technologies. These jamming technologies are classified under the Next-generation Jammer (NGJ), which will enable the destruction of enemy targets without being detected by their defence systems. As the pace of technology changes with the rapid upgrade of systems, the emerging NGJ technology, is expected to be deployed by early 2020.