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Back in 1949, Philip J. Klass, an American UFO researcher and journalist coined the term ‘avionics’ as a portmanteau word of ‘aviation electronics.’ It plays a crucial role in modernization and upgradation programs, such as the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Single European Sky ATM Research (SESAR) project in Europe and the Next Generation Air Transportation System initiative in the United States. As per a report by Fortune Business Insights™, the global market size for Avionics is projected to reach USD 75.81 billion by 2027. The rising delivery of military aircraft, coupled with border disputes occurring in Southeast Asian countries would bolster growth.
COVID-19 Pandemic: National Lockdowns and Travel Bans to Obstruct Growth
The aviation industry was severely affected by the COVID-19 pandemic across the globe. National lockdowns implemented by numerous European countries since January 2020 have compelled people to stay at their homes. Japan, for instance, declared in June 2020 that it would postpone the Olympics to 2021 because of the pandemic. According to the International Air Transport Association (IATA), the revenue generated from air-passenger traveling declined by 14.1% in 2020, compared to 2019. Since the implementation of travel bans, the demand for commercial aircraft has reduced drastically, thereby affecting the growth of this industry.
Fortune Business Insights™ Presents the Top 15 Companies in the Avionics Industry:
It is a renowned aerospace and defense technology company headquartered in the U.S. As per the Fortune 500 list, the company stood at number 96 in 2020. At present, it leads the development of a long-range bomber called B-21 Raider that can drop nuclear and conventional weapons. It also produces and develops the James Webb Space Telescope for Space Launch System program of NASA.
In January 2021, Northrop Grumman Corporation started conducting research and development activities on a vital battlefield airborne communications system involving unmanned and manned aircraft. The company bagged a five-year contract worth USD 3.6 billion from the U.S. Air Force Life Cycle Management Center for this research program.
The Boeing Company was founded by William E. Boeing in July 1916. It is a leading manufacturer, seller, and designer of missiles, telecommunication technologies, satellites, rotorcraft, airplanes, and rockets. It also provides product support and leasing services. Based on the 2018 revenue, it is considered to be the second-largest defense contractor worldwide.
In January 2021, Boeing signed a contract worth USD 170 million with the U.S. Air Force to develop a strategic military transport and military aerial refueling aircraft named 12 KC-46 Pegasus.
It is an aerospace technology company offering unmanned aircraft equipped with situational awareness solutions developed from mission-critical software and transponders. The company is currently serving civil and military duty on various medium and small UAVs. It is gradually broadening its technology platform to develop certifiable and comprehensive systems, such as avoid and detect solutions.
Sagetech won a new contract from the U.S. Air Force to develop multiple components for type-certifiable detect-and-avoid (DAA) systems. It would help U.A.S. to operate beyond the visual line-of-sight (BVLOS) safely in the National Airspace System (NAS).
Founded in 1906 by Mark C. Honeywell, the company ranked number 92 in 2019 in the Fortune 100 list. It is based in North Carolina and majorly focuses on four core businesses, namely, safety and productivity solutions (SPS), performance materials and technologies (PMT), building technologies, and aerospace. Its aerospace domain delivers space programs, airlines, avionics, flight management systems, and aircraft engines.
In January 2021, Honeywell launched the next-generation of Cabin Pressure Control and Monitoring System for both military and commercial aircraft. The latest version is lightweight, all-electric, and is available for regional and business aviation, as well as military and tactical trainer-sized aircraft.
It is a reputed manufacturer of unique avionics systems that offers forward-fit and retrofit solutions for a wide range of aircraft available in the industry. It serves OEMs, helicopter, airline, military, government, special missions, and business markets. It was founded by Hubert L. Naimer in 1981 and mainly possesses product lines, such as Cockpit Voice & Data Recorders, Flight Management Systems (FMS), Data Link/Communications Management Unit (CU) Systems, and Primary Flight and Multi-Function Displays.
In January 2021, UA unveiled its new solution named InSight Integrated Flight Deck with Redimec S.R.L. It will be installed in Hawker 800XP. The deck package provides added functionality and streamlined operations such as advanced mapping, electronic charts, and 3D SVS.
Founded 74 years ago by Nigel McCorkell, the company specializes in the manufacturing of subsystems and components for the selected energy and aerospace and defense markets. It is a constituent of the FTSE 250 Index and is listed on the London Stock Exchange. It acquired the Pacific Scientific Aerospace Group in 2011.
The Naval Air Systems Command gave a new contract worth USD 27.4 million to Meggitt in December 2020. It would enable the company to deliver 32 liquid palletized cooling units for the latter’s P-8A aircraft.
Based in the U.S., the company is a leading provider of technologically advanced aerospace and defense products. They include drones, air defense systems, missiles, cybersecurity, aerostructures, avionics, and aircraft engines. It receives a crucial portion of revenue from the U.S. government because of its large military contracts.
In December 2020, Raytheon Technologies Corp. provided open-systems aircraft mission processor avionics to the U.S. Special Operations Command (SOCOM) to replace the conventional equipment aboard Special Operations MC- and AC-130J aircraft.
It installs, sells, manufactures, engineers, and designs customized communications and in-flight entertainment solutions to airlines across the globe. It was founded in 1979 and is headquartered in California. It also supplies equipment to Bombardier, Airbus, and Boeing.
In October 2020, Panasonic Corporation was chosen by ZIPAIR to deliver in-flight connectivity (IFC) solutions, mainly for Boeing 787-8 aircraft. It will be installed with the company’s Wi-Fi service that would provide fast video streaming and internet browsing.
It is considered to be the world’s largest producer and designer of imaging sensors and thermal imaging cameras. Founded 43 years ago in Virginia, the company supplies its products for a wide range of government and commercial applications. Its prominent products include STAR SAFIRE 380-HDC, STAR SAFIRE380-HLD, and STAR SAFIRE 380-HD.
FLIR Systems Inc. received a contract worth USD 14.6 million from the Naval Surface Warfare Center to deliver multi-sensor electro-optical targeting systems named BRITE Star Block II for unmanned and manned vehicles in October 2020.
It is a subsidiary of Raytheon Technologies and is the world’s largest supplier of aerospace and defense products. Based in the U.S., it was formed in 2012. It is engaged in servicing, manufacturing, and designing components and systems for airports, space, helicopters, military & defense, and aviation.
In September 2020, Collins Aerospace was selected to deliver AN/ARC-210(v) radios by the Naval Air Warfare Center Aircraft Division for 400 tactical and strategic land-based, seaborne, and airborne platforms for the Coast Guard, Army, Marine Corps, and Navy.
The company ranked third in terms of revenue in 2017 and is considered to be the largest defense contractor in Europe. It was formed in 1999 by the merger of Marconi Electronic Systems (MES). It provides commercial aviation support systems, mission systems, cabin management systems, flight deck systems, and flight control systems to the aerospace and defense industry.
BAE Systems provided a contract to TT Electronics in September 2020 to qualify, develop, and design a flight control system to support Tempest, a combat aircraft that would be operational in 2035 by replacing Typhoons.
It majorly focuses on supplying avionics & electronics system solutions that record, analyze, consolidate, and acquire sensors and data of an aircraft. Additionally, it invests huge sums in research and development activities to maintain its leading position in the segment of custom-engineered products.
In September 2020, Curtiss-Wright’s Defense Solutions bagged a new contract from an electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft provider to deliver networking solutions and robust avionics systems for usage on its aircraft.
It is a multinational aerospace component, rocket engine, and aircraft engine provider headquartered in France. It offers a wide range of accelerometers and gyros that can be used to calculate the aircraft’s position, flight path, and speed.
In March 2019, the Australian Defense Force (ADF) awarded a contract to Safran for providing in-service support. The latter will do so for the Infrared Search and Track (IRST) VAMPIR systems developed by the Royal Australian Navy.
A subsidiary of General Electric, the company is based in Ohio and delivers engines to commercial aircraft. Its most prominent competitors in the market are Pratt & Whitney and Rolls-Royce. The company offers a range of navigation technologies, platform components, and value-added applications.
In November 2019, GE Aviation signed an agreement of twelve years with China Southern Airlines for supporting the latter’s Boeing 787 fleet. This agreement contains the former’s avionics systems capabilities and contents.
It is a provider of IT services and defense contracts that develops electronic systems, avionics, night vision equipment, tactical radios, wireless equipment, and C6ISR systems. It was founded in 2019 and is based in Florida. The company also specializes in electronic warfare, microwave weaponry, and surveillance solutions.
In June 2019, L3Harris Technologies provided a contract worth USD 500 million to upgrade Lockheed Martin’s C-130H tactical transports. They are operated by the U.S. Air Force (USAF) Reserve Command and the U.S. Air National Guard.
Would Integrated Avionics & Need for Safety Propel Growth in Future?
The usage of integrated avionics is set to lower the cost of electronic control units and enhance the performance of aircraft. This new technology is a blend of system-wide information management (SWIM), next-generation network-enabled weather (NNEW), next-generation data communications, and automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B). Besides, the need to surge safety and security of air travel would propel the demand for technologically advanced products in the near future.
-Written by Reeti Banerjee