Unmanned Aerial Vehicles are human operated drones. UAV have wide range of applications in healthcare, e-commerce, food, retail, and defense industries. In UAV, propellers acts as one of the most primary component, which converts rotational energy into thrust to drive the UAV take-off operation effectively. Furthermore, UAV propellers are designed and developed using wood or composite material. However, UAV propellers made from composite materials generate less noise and vibrations compared to wood propellers. Composite Propellers are more efficient to work under mission-critical military applications.
Global UAV propellers market is expected to witness significant growth during the forecast period (2020–2027). The market growth is majorly attributed to increasing adoption of UAV in the oil and gas industry. Automated drones are used for surveillance and inspection of infrastructure and pipeline in the oil and gas industry. For instance, Sinopec Group, one of the largest producer of oil in the world, used micro drones for inspection of a 6,000 km oil pipeline in southern China in September 2019. Moreover, drones also have wide application in mining industry such as to generate point clouds, digital surface models, and digital terrain models of a mining site. Therefore, increasing demand for UAV is expected to aid in growth of the UAV propellers markets during the forecast period. For instance, according to Coherent Market Insights’ analysis, key players in the mining industry such as Rio Tinto, Vale, BHP, Anglo American, and Barrick Gold are using UAV from the last 4-5 years. According to the news release of BHP in August 2019, BHP reduced the surveillance cost by US$ 5 Million per year by switching to drones from traditional methods. Owing to reduced surveillance cost many SME’s in the mining industry are also expected to shift to UAV from traditional surveillance methods in the coming years.
Countries such as the U.S. have set rules and regulations for use of drones. For instance, operators should register the done with the U.S. Government and drone must weigh less than 55 lbs. Such rules and regulations are restraining growth of the market. Moreover, initial high cost of drones is also restraining factor. The cost of drones starts from US$ 300 and can go up to US$ 5,000.
North America held dominant position in the global UAV propellers market in 2019, accounting for 43.7% share in terms of value, followed by Europe and Asia Pacific, respectively.
Figure 1: Global UAV Propellers Market Share (%), By Region, 2019
Increasing demand for UAV in countries such as the U.S. for military applications is expected to drive the UAV propellers market growth positively in the North America region.
North America held a dominant position in the global UAV propellers market in 2019, and is expected to retain its dominance over the forecast period. This is attributed to increasing demand for UAVs for application in the defense sector. For instance, U.S. Navy signed an agreement for US$ 805 Million with Boeing for MQ-25, an aerial refueling drone. Boeing is a Chicago-based aerospace company. The MQ-25 can refuel combat jets such as Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet, Boeing EA-18G Growler, and Lockheed Martin F-35C aircraft.
Asia Pacific region is expected to show highest growth during the forecast period. This is owing to increasing expenditure on UAV by the China and Indian governments. For instance, according to the Ministry of Defense of India, the U.S. is discussing a US$ 2 billion deal with India for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle since January 2020. This is expected to aid in growth of the market.
Major players operating in the global UAV propellers market include Cato Manufacturing Ltd, Culver Props, Inc., Delta Electronics, Inc., Dowty Circuits Limited, Hartzell Propeller, Inc., McCauley Propeller Systems, Inc., Sensenich Propeller Service, Inc., and others
Surge in demand for composite propellers for military and spy drones is expected to drive the UAV propellers market during the forecast period
Among material type segment, composite propeller segment accounted for 37.3% of the market share in 2019. Moreover, carbon fiber is expected to be the fastest growing segment exhibiting the highest CAGR of around 21.3% during the forecast period.
Composite propellers have advantages such as shorter take off distance, increased cruise speed and less noise & vibrations. Composite drones generates less noise and vibrations due to which they are widely used in spy drones. For instance, Northrop Grumman Corporation specially designed a spy drone XRQ-72A for the U.S. military. XRQ-72A uses hybrid electric technology with composite propellers to reduce the noise and vibration to minimum level. Wood propellers segment is expected to show highest growth during the forecast owing to its low cost and weight.
Figure 2: Global UAV Propellers Market Value (US$ Mn), 2016 - 2027
The global UAV propellers market was valued at US$ 330.4 Mn in 2019 and is forecast to reach a value of US$ 891.4 Mn by 2027 at a CAGR of 13.20% between 2020 and 2027.