Unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV), also known as underwater drones, are vehicles that operate underwater without any direct human input. They are basically used for oil & gas exploration, defense, and surveillance, among others. Of late, UUVs have caught the attention of many manufacturers, which are looking to strengthen their hold on the UUV market. Moreover, government and other organizations have been actively investing in development and manufacturing of advanced and efficient UUVs. Increased offshore exploration activities and need for more maritime security has led to a huge demand for UUVs, thereby propelling the growth of this market, globally.
Drivers & Restraints for the Market
The significant growth of the global UUV market is primarily influenced by the following factors:
- Rising deep-water offshore oil & gas production
- Increased maritime security due to rise in threats
- Growing need for ocean data and mapping
Moreover, advanced ocean exploration activities is boosting the demand for UUV, thereby boosting the overall market growth as well. However, issues related to UUV reliability is a restraining factor for the market growth. Moreover, UUV autonomy and launch and recovery of AUV are a couple of challenges faced by the leading players in this market.
The global unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) market which was estimated to be valued at USD 2.29 Billion in 2015 is expected to hit USD 4.00 Billion by 2020, advancing at a CAGR of 11.90% during the forecast period. As of now, the UUV market is dominated by North America, owing to the advanced technology, growing terrorism, and rise in offshore discoveries for deep-water extraction. However, the market in Africa and Latin America is predicted to drive the global market in the near future, with the African market anticipated to grow at the highest CAGR. This growth can be attributed to increased oil & gas exploration activities in countries such as South Africa and Nigeria and the anti-submarine warfare for supporting the detection of manned submarines.
Based on application, the commercial exploration segment is projected to grow at a significant CAGR over the forecast period due to the increased demand for advanced technology in UUV across all industries. On the basis of type, the ROV segment dominates the market, and will continue to do so over the next five years as well, owing rise in demand in commercial sector and lesser operational costs. Based on payload, the market is governed by the camera segment; however, the sensors segment is projected to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period.
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The global unmanned underwater vehicles (UUV) market has been analyzed and predicted by splitting it into following categories and sub-categories:
- Type: ROV, AUV
- Application: Commercial, Defense, Scientific Research, Miscellaneous
- Payload: Sensors, Synthetic Aperture Sonar, INS, Camera, Videoscreen, Lighting System, Others
- Propulsion System: Electric System, Mechanical System, Hybrid System, Others
- Product Type: Man Portable, LWV, HWV, Large Vehicle
- Geography: North America, Europe, the Middle East, Asia-Pacific, Latin America, Africa
The major players in this market have been identified to be Oceaneering International (U.S.), Kongsberg Maritime (Norway), Teledyne Technologies, Inc. (U.S.), and Subsea 7 S.A. (U.K.), among others.