According to the report, the global target drone market will continue to be influenced by a range of factors such as increasing adoption of target drones for training and testing of anti-aircraft crews by various defense forces along with its rising use for border security, reconnaissance, and surveillance for safety purposes. Asia Pacific will continue to be at the forefront of global demand, with the market in the region growing at above 10% through 2026. The global target drone market is expected to reach US$ 8,240.2 Mn by 2026. The market is projected to expand at a CAGR of 10.02% during the forecast period from 2018 to 2026
Ground target platform type segment expected to be more lucrative
The global target drone market is bifurcated by platform into ground target, aerial target, underwater target, and sea surface target. Ground target platform is projected to hold significant market revenue share in 2026. The higher market share of the ground target drone platform is due to the increasing air to ground missile attacks in various regions especially across the Middle East region. The target drone imitates the missiles and helps anti-aircraft crews to test and simulate the real life scenario. Additionally, defense forces are also deploying aerial target systems for combat training. For instance, in May 2018, Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc., an aerospace and Defense Company, announced that it has been given a contract worth US$ 93.3 million for providing aerial target systems to the U.S. defense force.
Internal combustion engine segment expected to dominate the target drone market
Based on engine type, the target drone market is segmented into internal combustion engine, jet engine, and others. The higher market share of internal combustion engine is because of wider use across many target drones due to its numerous advantages including lighter weight and compactness, and higher safety and efficiency. However, jet engines segment is projected to expand at a significant CAGR due to its rising popularity and it is expected to be used across various target drones due to higher speed and maneuverability.
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On the basis of application, the target drone market is segmented into combat training; target & decoy; and surveillance, target acquisition, and reconnaissance. Combat training application segment is expected to hold a higher market share of over 38% in 2026. This is due to the larger use of target drones by many defense forces for the training and testing of anti-aircraft crews. Target drones are designed to simulate enemy threats and allow ground, naval, and air forces to train with air-to-air and surface-to-air targets. Furthermore, target drones also allow weapon and radar operators to train against a realistic target.