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2023

Spacecraft Market

Spacecraft Market Size, Share, Competitive Landscape and Trend Analysis Report by Type, by End Use : Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2023-2032

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Author's: Gunjan Malani | Lalit Janardhan Katare
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The global spacecraft market size was valued at $5.9 billion in 2022, and is projected to reach $10.4 billion by 2032, growing at a CAGR of 5.9% from 2023 to 2032.

Key Highlighters:

  • The report covers segments such as manned spacecraft and unmanned spacecraft. The report is studied across different regions such as North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.
  • The report includes key spacecraft market trends, spacecraft market opportunities, and details of the leading manufacturers of spacecraft in the industry
  • The study integrates high-quality data, professional opinions and analysis, and critical independent perspectives. The research approach is intended to provide a balanced view of global markets and to assist stakeholders in making educated decisions in order to achieve their most ambitious growth objectives.
  • Over 3,700 product literatures, annual reports, industry statements, and other comparable materials from major industry participants were reviewed to gain a better understanding of the market.

A spacecraft is a specifically designed vehicle intended for operation in space, either beyond the atmosphere of Earth or in orbit Earth. These vehicles serve various purposes, encompassing communication, Earth observation, meteorology, navigation, space colonization, planetary exploration, and the transportation of humans and cargo. The reliance on thrust for propulsion and the capacity to function in the absence of air for lift or drag are what distinguish spacecraft from aircraft.

Spacecraft Market

Factors such as the increase in investment in space exploration missions by governments and private companies, surge in space exploration missions, and development of reusable spacecraft technology drive the growth of the spacecraft market. However, high development and manufacturing costs, and complex regulatory environment hinder the growth of the market. Furthermore, the increase in spacecraft infrastructure development projects, and increase in adoption of 3D printing for rapid manufacturing offer remarkable growth opportunities for the players operating in the market.

The pursuit of interplanetary exploration missions is a major driving factor. Spacecraft are being built for missions to other planets, moons, and celestial bodies. Deep space probes are used for scientific research beyond earth's orbit. Sending spacecraft to investigate distant objects such as comets and asteroids has become popular.

Continuous advancements in propulsion technologies drive the growth of the spacecraft market. Improved propulsion systems enable spacecraft to travel longer distances and achieve higher speeds in deep space. Collaborative efforts among countries for deep space exploration contribute to market growth. Shared resources, knowledge, and funding enhance the feasibility of ambitious interplanetary missions.

The spacecraft market is segmented on the basis of type, end use, region. On the basis of type, the market is divided into manned spacecraft and unmanned spacecraft. On the basis of end use, the market is classified into commercial & civil, and military. On the basis of region, the market is analyzed across North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.

North America is one the largest regions for spacecraft manufacturing driven extensively by large scale NASA and Department of Defense space programs in the U.S. The presence of key contractors such as SpaceX, Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop Grumman, and emerging NewSpace startups focused on areas such as small satellites, space logistics, and infrastructure ensures steady projects. Canada also possesses niche expertise in robotic systems and satellite communications hardware.

The emerging phase of space commercialization led by companies such as SpaceX and Blue Origin and shift toward public-private partnerships focused on deep space crew exploration, space-based services are expanding business cases for made-in-America spacecraft serving national interests and global demand.

Moreover, the U.S. based space companies are developing new spacecrafts to maximize the space exploration. For instance, in November 2023, Sierra Space, the Colorado-based company completed the construction of its first Dream Chaser vehicle, named "Tenacity." This spaceplane is scheduled to be transported to NASA's Neil A. Armstrong Test Facility in Ohio for environmental testing in the coming weeks. Sierra Space holds a NASA contract for launching robotic resupply missions to the International Space Station (ISS) using Dream Chaser. Tenacity is expected to be the first of the company's space planes to journey to the orbiting lab, and a test flight to the ISS might take place as early as April 2024. Such developments propel the growth of the spacecraft market in the region.

The leading companies profiled in the global spacecraft industry report include SpaceX, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Boeing Company, Airbus, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Sierra Nevada Corporation, Thales, Maxar Technologies, OHB SE, and Blue Origin Enterprises, L.P. These companies are adopting strategies to increase their spacecraft market share.

Spacecraft Market by Type

Increase in investment in space exploration missions by governments and private companies

Governments around the globe are investing heavily in space exploration missions to expand scientific knowledge, understand the universe better, and secure strategic advantages. Agencies such as NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration), ESA (European Space Agency), Roscosmos (Russian Space Agency), and others are allocating substantial budgets to support ambitious missions. These missions range from robotic exploration of celestial bodies to crewed missions to the Moon, Mars, and beyond.

Moreover, the landscape of space exploration has undergone a transformative shift with the active involvement of private companies. Companies such as SpaceX, Blue Origin, and others have entered the space race, bringing innovation, cost-efficiency, and competition. Private investments are fueling the development of advanced technologies, which enable a broader range of space exploration missions. For instance, in October 2023, Indian space startup Agnikul Cosmos announced that it secured an additional $26.7 million in funding ahead of its inaugural rocket launch. This development comes amid increased interest and investment in private space firms, driven in part by the successful landing of an Indian spacecraft on the moon. Having accumulated a total of $40 million in funding thus far, Agnikul Cosmos intends to utilize the recent $26.7 million injection to facilitate preparations for commercial launches. Such developments further support the growth of the market.

Surge in space exploration missions

The expanding roster of government agencies as well as private companies ramping up exploration activities signals sustained momentum. Recent examples include UAE’s Hope Mars orbiter, NASA and ESA’s Mars Sample Retrieval mission, NASA’s Lucy craft targeting Trojan asteroids and China’s lunar sample return mission, among others.

Each such endeavor relies extensively on developing specialized spacecraft for tasks from cargo and crew transport to conducting astrophysics experiments while braving extreme deep space conditions. This necessitates considerable manufacturing orders and revenue potential for the industry. For instance, in April 2021, NASA, the U.S. space agency, granted aerospace manufacturer SpaceX a significant contract worth $2.89 billion. This contract is designated for the construction of a moon lander, which will be utilized to transport the next two American astronauts to the moon. The mission involves sending four astronauts aboard NASA's Orion spacecraft to lunar orbit. Subsequently, two of the astronauts will transfer to the SpaceX human landing system (HLS) for their descent to the moon's surface.

The projected surge in interplanetary missions leveraging improving launch economics directly elevates demand across robots, manned vehicles, and other spacecraft, thus driving market growth.

Spacecraft Market by End Use

Development of reusable spacecraft technology

The ability to design and build spacecraft that can be launched into space, perform their mission, and safely return to Earth without damage for reuse in further flights has been a major goal. Achieving reusability can dramatically transform economics and frequency of space access. More ambitious rocket systems such as SpaceX Starship which aims to include fully reusable heavy lift launch vehicle built for interplanetary missions are under development. Meanwhile, Sierra Space's DreamChaser spaceplane also promises affordable crew/cargo lift capability to orbit and back up to 15 times.

Moreover, In July 2023, China revealed intentions to launch its inaugural reusable spacecraft by 2027, according to the deputy chief engineering designer of its manned space program. This craft aims to significantly contribute to China's space station assembly and lunar landing missions. Enabling reusability promises cost-effective opportunities in space tourism and accessible low earth orbit ventures, potentially boosting market growth in these sectors.

High development and manufacturing costs

The design, development, and manufacturing of spacecraft involve significant upfront costs. The spacecraft industry relies on advanced technologies for propulsion systems, communication equipment, sensors, and materials. Research and development (R&D) costs associated with pushing technological boundaries contribute to the overall expense.

Ensuring the reliability and functionality of spacecraft demands extensive testing and qualification processes. These procedures, which include thermal testing, vibration testing, and environmental testing, add to the overall costs of spacecraft development.

The relatively low production volume of spacecraft compared to other industries limits the economies of scale. Mass production techniques that often lead to cost reductions in other sectors are challenging to implement in the spacecraft industry due to the customized nature of each mission.

Complex regulatory environment

The spacecraft industry is subject to a complex regulatory environment that includes international treaties, national space laws, and licensing requirements. Navigating regulatory frameworks can be challenging and time-consuming, potentially delaying spacecraft projects and increasing compliance costs.

Spacecraft Market by Region

Recent Developments in Spacecraft Industry:

In May 2022, The CST-100 Starliner spacecraft, part of NASA and Boeing's collaboration, concluded its uncrewed Orbital Flight Test-2 (OFT-2) by safely landing, marking a successful mission to verify its readiness for carrying astronauts to the International Space Station.

In November 2022, SpaceX launched a new cargo Dragon spacecraft to the space station. It delivered 3,528 kilograms of cargo to the station, including supplies for the station's crew, research experiments, and hardware.

In December 2023, Airbus successfully passed the Preliminary Design Review (PDR) of Ariel, the Atmospheric Remote-sensing Infrared Exoplanet Large-survey spacecraft. This European Space Agency (ESA) mission will study the composition of exoplanets by surveying a diverse sample of about 1000 extrasolar planets in visible and infrared wavelengths.

In May 2023, NASA selected Blue Origin as the Second Artemis Lunar Lander provider. Blue Origin will design, develop, test, and verify its Blue Moon lander to meet NASA's human landing system requirements for recurring astronaut expeditions to the lunar surface, including docking with Gateway, a space station where crew transfer in lunar orbit.

The spacecraft market is segmented into Type and End Use.

Key Benefits For Stakeholders

  • This report provides a quantitative analysis of the market segments, current trends, estimations, and dynamics of the spacecraft market analysis from 2022 to 2032 to identify the prevailing market opportunities.
  • The market research is offered along with information related to key drivers, restraints, and opportunities.
  • Porter's five forces analysis highlights the potency of buyers and suppliers to enable stakeholders make profit-oriented business decisions and strengthen their supplier-buyer network.
  • In-depth analysis of the market segmentation assists to determine the prevailing market opportunities.
  • Major countries in each region are mapped according to their revenue contribution to the global market.
  • Market player positioning facilitates benchmarking and provides a clear understanding of the present position of the market players.
  • The report includes the analysis of the regional as well as global spacecraft industry trends, key players, market segments, application areas, and market growth strategies.

Spacecraft Market Report Highlights

Aspects Details
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Market Size By 2032

USD 10.4 billion

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Growth Rate

CAGR of 5.9%

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Forecast period

2022 - 2032

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Report Pages

280

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By Type
  • Manned Spacecraft
  • Unmanned Spacecraft
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By End Use
  • Commercial and Civil
  • Military
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By Region
  • North America  (U.S., Canada, Mexico)
  • Europe  (Germany, France, UK, Italy, Rest of Europe)
  • Asia-Pacific  (China, India, Japan, South Korea, Rest of Asia-Pacific)
  • LAMEA  (Latin America, Middle East, Africa)
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Key Market Players

Spacex, Boeing Company, Thales, Airbus, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Blue Origin Enterprises, L.P., Sierra Nevada Corporation, Maxar Technologies, OHB SE, Northrop Grumman Corporation

Author Name(s) : Gunjan Malani | Lalit Janardhan Katare
Frequently Asked Questions?

The global spacecraft industry generated $5.9 billion in 2022, and is anticipated to generate $10.4 billion by 2032, witnessing a CAGR of 5.9% from 2023 to 2032.

The largest regional market for Spacecraft is North America.

The leading application of the Spacecraft Market is commercial and civil.

The top companies in the market include SpaceX, Northrop Grumman Corporation, Boeing Company, Airbus, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Sierra Nevada Corporation, Thales, Maxar Technologies, OHB SE, and Blue Origin Enterprises, L.P.

The upcoming trends in the spacecraft market include increase in adoption of 3D printing for rapid manufacturing, and development of reusable spacecraft technology.

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Spacecraft Market

Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2023-2032