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Military Sensors Market Size, Share & COVID-19 Impact Analysis, By Platform (Ground, Airborne, Naval, Space), By Component (Hardware, Software), By Application (Navigation & Communication, Intelligence & Reconnaissance, Electronic Warfare, Command & Control, Monitoring & Surveillance, Target Recognition), and Regional Forecast, 2020-2027

Last Updated: July 08, 2024 | Format: PDF | Report ID: FBI104666


Military Sensors Market Size

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The global military sensors market size was USD 25.94 billion in 2019 and is projected to grow from USD 21.66 billion in 2020 to USD 74.91 billion in 2032 at a CAGR of 8.50% in 2020-2032. North America dominated the military sensors market with a market share of 38.74% in 2019.


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The sudden rise in CAGR is attributable to this market’s demand and growth, returning to pre-pandemic levels once the pandemic is over. 

The global impact of COVID-19 has been unprecedented and staggering, with military sensors witnessing a negative demand shock across all regions amid the pandemic. Based on our analysis, the global military sensor market will exhibit a decline of -16.5% in 2020.

Security systems depend on intelligent and smart sensor technologies, thus, sensors have become a crucial component of military systems. The military sensor market growth is attributed to the evolution of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS). The rising adoption of MEMS-based devices such as micro gyros, microbolometers, and micromirrors is expected to augment the growth of the market. Moreover, military modernization programs carried out in various countries are expected to support market growth.

COVID-19 Pandemic Has Negatively Impacted the Defense Supply Chain

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic has devastated the economic condition of several developed and developing countries. The defense sector continues to operate despite the global emergency. The Department of Defense of the U.S. continues to accelerate payments, buy products, and sign contracts to support businesses. However, tier 3 and tier 4 suppliers have slowed down production owing to the unavailability of the working staff due to COVID-19, which has further delayed the delivery of procured equipment.

  • For instance, in April 2020, Eaton Corporation, a supplier of major defense players such as the Boeing Company, announced that its Eaton Grand Rapids, Michigan plant would remain closed for more than two weeks for the health & safety of their staff and suppliers.

Moreover, the U.S. has invested in the development of new technology for the prevention of COVID-19, which is expected to support market growth.

  • For instance, in May 2020, the U.S. Army requested several companies bid for USD 25 million to develop wearable sensors to detect the early symptoms of COVID-19. High investments in the prevention of COVID-19 are anticipated to support growth.


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Advent of Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) is a Prominent Trend

Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) is an upcoming technology that will play an important role in monitoring remote locations. A WSN is a collection of transducers aided with appropriate communication infrastructure, which is specially designed for the monitoring and recording of different conditions at various locations. A WSN can be used in several military applications such as seismic activity monitoring, military surveillance, and others. Advancements in network technology are expected to improve the efficiency of combat operations by delivering critical information efficiently.


Rising Demand for Military Aircraft & Armored Vehicles to Contribute to Growth

The growing concerns of strengthening defense capabilities among countries such as the U.S., China, and India are expected to increase the demand for military sensors. Next-generation military aircraft and armored vehicles are incorporated with advanced sensors and cyber systems owing to the shifting warfighting methods. An increase in the procurement of military aircraft to improve air defense is expected to fuel market growth.

  • For instance, in August 2020, the U.S. Department of Defense awarded a 10-year contract to Lockheed Martin Corporation worth USD 62 billion for the production of F-16 foreign military sale aircraft.

Moreover, the rising demand for armored vehicles from European countries such as the U.K. and Bulgaria is expected to further spur the opportunities for the military sensor.

  • For instance, in November 2019, the British Army invested USD 3.6 billion to purchase 8X8 high mobility, network-enabled armored vehicles.

Thus, the rising procurement of armored vehicles and military aircraft is expected to support the growth of the market.

Rapid Modernization of Microelectromechanical Systems (MEMS) to Drive Growth

The optical-MEMS and RF-MEMS devices play a vital role in developing military sensors that meet special military requirements. Due to the compact size, low power consumption, and high reliability, MEMS are most suitable in developing sensors for surveillance, drone electronics, battlefield tanks, missiles, and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). Moreover, MEMS-based and nanotechnology-based sensors are widely adopted to monitor the battlefield environment and weapon health, which is anticipated to propel the market growth. The victory of the future battleground conflicts is predicted to depend on the rapid incorporation of MEMS-based sensor devices. Thus, the innovation in MEMS technology is anticipated to boost the market growth during the forecast period.


Complexity in Design of Military Sensors May Hinder Growth

The complexity in the design of military sensors is increasing along with the trend of the adoption of the Internet of Things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI), which is anticipated to hamper the growth of the market. The adoption of AI in military sensor has many advantages, although it may introduce various challenges. AI technology facilitates easy decision-making, autonomous operations and can increase the speed of operations. However, the technology can be vulnerable and unpredictable to different types of manipulation, and hence the design of AI-based sensors is complex. Furthermore, many countries in North America and Europe have decreased their defense budgets, which are expected to negatively affect the market.


By Platform Analysis

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Airborne Segment to Show Highest CAGR Due to Rising Procurement of Military Aircraft

Based on the platform, the market is classified into ground, airborne, naval, and space. The airborne segment is anticipated to grow at a high CAGR owing to the increasing procurement of military helicopters, fighter jets, and military unmanned vehicles (UAVs) from countries such as the U.S., China, and India. Numerous sensors such as infrared sensors, electro-optics infrared sensors (EOIR), and others are integrated within several search and track, surveillance & monitoring aircraft.

The ground segment is expected to dominate the market in 2019. The growth of the segment is attributed to the up-gradation programs of armored vehicles and the high demand for unmanned ground vehicles. The sensors such as wide-angle sensors, optronic sensors, and others are installed in surveillance & detection systems, navigation systems, fire control systems of tanks, and other armored vehicles.

  • For instance, in March 2020, FLIR Systems was awarded a contract worth USD 23 million by the U.S. Air Force (USAF) to supply almost 200 units of Centaur Unmanned Ground Vehicles and its spares to the USAF.

By Component Analysis

Software Segment to Grow Rapidly Propelled by Increasing Adoption of AI-enabled Systems

Based on the component, the market is bifurcated into hardware and software. The hardware segment is further divided into LiDAR sensor, magnetic sensor, pressure sensor, temperature sensor, force sensor, radar sensor, accelerometer, speed sensor, vibration sensor, torque sensor, proximity sensor, gyroscope, GPS sensor, SONAR, laser target designators, angle of attack sensor, flow sensor, position sensor.

The rising demand for LiDAR sensors in unmanned systems is expected to fuel market growth. Magnetic sensors are used for position tracking & navigation purposes in military forces. The pressure, temperature, torque, speed, flow, and level & force sensors segment is expected to grow substantially owing to the rising procurement of land, naval, and airborne vehicles by military or defense forces of various countries.

Seismic sensors are used for land target detection, such as missile launchers, tanks, and armored troop carriers. The demand for proximity sensors is expected to increase owing to its growing usage of surveillance purposes in airborne and ground platforms. The Angle of Attack (AOA) sensor segment is expected to grow significantly backed by the rising procurement of fixed-wing military aircraft.

The software segment is anticipated to grow at a high rate on account of the rising demand for real-time analyzing and processing of the data through machine learning & artificial intelligence (AI). The U.S. Army is focused on AI-enabled projects such as the Air Force’s Battle Management System. The development of AI-enabled systems will create a high demand for the development of software systems.

By Application Analysis

Electronic Warfare Segment to Exhibit Significant Growth Fueled by Surging Defense Budget

Based on application, the market is segregated into navigation & communication, intelligence & reconnaissance, electronic warfare, command & control, monitoring & surveillance, and target recognition. The electronic warfare segment is expected to be the fastest-growing segment owing to the rising investment in electronic warfare by several countries such as the U.S.

  • For instance, the U.S. Department of Defense increased its electronic warfare capital by 16.8% in 2020. Moreover, emerging economies such as China & India have also surged their defense spending over the past 2-3 years.

The monitoring & surveillance segment is anticipated to showcase significant growth throughout the forecast period. The growth is attributed to the rising disputes and conflicts among countries in the Middle East, such as Syria, Iraq, and others.

The use of situational awareness in command and control helps in solving complex problems and easy decision making. Situational awareness uses various sensors to collect information about its environmental elements. The command & control segment is predicted to grow owing to the rising demand for situational awareness in the military. For instance, in September 2020, CAE USA Mission Solutions Inc. was awarded a contract by United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) for its global situational awareness program to provide next-generation command and control capabilities. Moreover, the rising terrorist activities are expected to fuel the segment growth.


North America Military Sensors Market Size, 2019 (USD Billion)

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The global military sensors market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and the Rest of the world. North America dominated the market in 2019 and stood at USD 10.05 billion. The growth can be attributed to the implementation of modernization programs and initiatives such as 3D expeditionary long-range radar and others. The U.S. government offers heavy spending on defense equipment, creating a conductive growth atmosphere for the defense industry. Moreover, the presence of key players such as Raytheon Company and Honeywell International Inc. is predicted to support market growth in the region.

Asia Pacific region is predicted to grow at the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The rising geopolitical tensions between China-India and territorial disputes between India-Pakistan have led these emerging countries to increase their defense budgets. The rising demand for advanced threat detection systems is expected to aid the market growth in the region.

The market in Europe is anticipated to grow substantially owing to the rising defense budgets of countries such as Germany and Spain. Moreover, the increasing procurement of EOIR sensors by the U.K. Defense Ministry is expected to augment the market growth in Europe.

  • In May 2020, the U.K. Defense and Security Accelerator (DASA) granted about 13 contracts worth USD 2.8 million for the development of enhanced Electro-Optics and Infrared (EOIR) sensors. The contracts were awarded to various small and medium scale industries in Europe.

Middle Eastern countries such as Saudi Arabia and Israel have increased their defense spending, which is expected to support market growth. Moreover, territorial disputes between countries such as Iran, Iraq, and Syria have led to an increase in the procurement of surveillance & monitoring sensors. It is anticipated to aid regional market growth.


Lockheed Martin Corporation is a Prominent Player Offering Infrared Sensor Solutions

Lockheed Martin Corporation is a leader in providing infrared sensor systems. The company has a wide range of product portfolio. The U.S. Department of Defense is the key customer of the company and thus, it has secured a stable position in the market. The company invests in research & development and new product innovation activities. Moreover, it is focused on mergers, agreements, and contracts to sustain its position in the market. Furthermore, the players focus on strategic partnerships, acquisitions, and mergers to expand their capabilities and sustain their global position in the market.


  • Honeywell International Inc. (The U.S.)

  • Thales Group (France)

  • Curtiss-Wright Corporation (The U.S.)

  • TE Connectivity Ltd. (The U.S.)

  • Raytheon Company (The U.S.)

  • Kongsberg Gruppen ASA (Norway)

  • BAE Systems PLC (The U.K.)

  • Lockheed Martin Corporation (The U.S.)

  • Imperx, Inc. (The U.S.)


  • In July 2021, QinetiQ Inc. was awarded a contract worth USD 24 million by the U.S. Army to build 3 SPECTRE next generation full spectrum hyperspectral prototype sensors. This sensor enables crewed aircraft and multi-mission Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) to function parallel with other critical sensor payloads and weapons.

  • In June 2021, Raytheon Technologies Inc. and L3Harris Technologies Inc. were awarded contract worth approximately USD 4.37 million for development of prototype communications intelligence (COMINT) and electronic intelligence (ELINT) sensors for the U.S. Army’s High Accuracy Detection and Exploitation System (HADES).

  • In March 2021, Collins Aerospace was awarded an Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract revision by the U.S. Air Force to deliver its FastJet reconnaissance pod. The pod is integrated with MS-110 Multispectral Airborne Reconnaissance system. The MS-110 sensor uses multi-spectral technology which increases intelligence capability and improves imagery in poor visibility

  • In December 2020, – BAE Systems PLC was awarded a contract worth USD 60 million by Lockheed Martin Corporation to deliver added advanced missile seekers for the Long Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM). The seeker includes targeting technology and long-range sensors that assist the stealthy missile to detect and engage protected enemy ships.


An Infographic Representation of Military Sensors Market

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The military sensors market research report provides a detailed analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as key players, sensor types, applications, and platforms. Moreover, it offers insights into the military sensors market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the factors mentioned above, the report encompasses several direct and indirect factors that have contributed to the high growth of the market over recent years.

Report Scope & Segmentation



Study Period


Base Year


Forecast Period


Historical Period



  Value (USD billion)


  Platform; Component; Application and Geography

By Platform

  • Ground

  • Airborne

  • Naval

  • Space

By Component

  • Hardware

    • LIDAR Sensor

    • Magnetic Sensor

    • Pressure Sensor

    • Temperature Sensor

    • Force Sensor

    • Radar Sensor

    • Accelerometer

    • Speed Sensor

    • Vibration Sensor

    • Torque Sensor

    • Proximity Sensor

    • Gyroscope

    • GPS Sensor

    • SONAR

    • Laser Target Designator

    • Angle of Attack (AOA) Sensor

    • Flow Sensor

    • Position Sensor

  • Software

By Application

  • Navigation & Communication

  • Intelligence & Reconnaissance

  • Electronic Warfare

  • Command & Control

  • Monitoring & Surveillance

  • Target Recognition

By Geography


  • North America (By Platform, Component, Application, and Country)

    • The U.S. (By Platform)

    • Canada (By Platform)

  • Europe (By Platform, Component, Application, and Country)

    • The U.K. (By Platform)

    • Germany (By Platform)

    • France (By Platform)

    • Italy (By Platform)

    • Rest of Europe (By Platform)

  • Asia-Pacific (By Platform, Component, Application, and Country)

    • China (By Platform)

    • India (By Platform)

    • Japan (By Platform)

    • Australia (By Platform)

    • Rest of Asia-Pacific (By Platform)

  • Rest of the World (By Platform, Component, Application, and Country)

    • South America (By Platform)

    • The Middle East & Africa (By Platform)

Frequently Asked Questions

Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 25.94 billion in 2019 and is projected to reach USD 34.58 billion by 2027.

Registering a CAGR of 6.91%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period (2020-2027).

The ground-based sensor segment is expected to lead this market during the forecast period owing to the increased purchase of unmanned ground vehicles and armored vehicles.

Lockheed Martin Corporation is the leading player in the global market.

North America dominated the market in terms of share in 2019.

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