Air Traffic Control Equipment Market: Leading Players Are Acquiring Small Scale Companies

​The competition among players in the global air traffic control equipment market has increased considerably in the last few years. The top three players – Harris Corp., Thales Group, and BAE Systems Plc – accounted for nearly 46% of the market in 2012. Companies are introducing new products and offering customized air traffic management solutions at reasonable cost, states a new report by Transparency Market Research (TMR).
In order to manage the growing air traffic, traffic authorities are changing the way they operate and manufacturers are shifting their production base to emerging economies. Leading players are acquiring small scale companies. Case in point: Indra Sistemas along with Northrop Grumman, acquired Park Air Systems Norway. This acquisition helped Indra build up its portfolio in air traffic management systems.

R&D remains the core focus of key companies in the global air traffic control equipment market. Thales Group, for instance, invested over US$3 bn into R&D in 2013. The development of sophisticated technology for analysis, decision making, and detection fields is another area gripping the focus of players. With innovation in their products, key players hope to serve space and aeronautics, defense and security, and ground transportation.

Environmental Benefits Associated With Use of Air Traffic Control Equipment Boosts Demand

The utilization of air traffic control systems benefits the environment to a great extent. According to a 2012 research conducted by Airbus, around 9 mn tons of fuel would be saved per year, if air traffic control and management systems were used optimally. This would help prevent 28 mn tons of CO2 emissions per year. The environmental benefits of using air traffic control equipment will thus, drive their demand.

Another factor contributing to the growth of the global air traffic control equipment market is the growing trade relations between countries. Numerous student exchange programs conducted by universities are leading to a rise in the number of air travelers. The number of international students registering in Canada, according to the Canadian Bureau for International Education was 265,000 in 2012. Since passenger comfort and safety are key concerns for airport authorities, there is a growing demand for air traffic control equipment.

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The growing disposable income has led to an increasing number of people using air transport. As per the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), 2.9 bn people used air transport in 2012. Manufacturers of aircrafts delivered 1,500 new aircrafts in 2013. Such factors contribute to the demand for air traffic control equipment. The number of passengers is expected to increase in Latin America, the Middle East, and Asia Pacific, which will further drive the demand for air traffic control equipment. On the other hand, the high cost of air traffic control systems is the factor limiting the growth of the market, states a TMR analyst.

Satellite-based Air Traffic Control Systems to Offer Efficient Air Traffic Management

For the efficient management of air traffic, the Federal Aviation Administration FAA is striving to replace the current radar-based navigation system to satellite-based navigation air traffic control system, as it will help provide precise location of airplanes every second. Moreover, the satellite-based navigation is expected to cut down on emissions and also the fuel cost owing to continuous tracking.

According to the report, the global market opportunity in air traffic control equipment will rise from US$4.1 bn by 2019. By type, the communication equipment segment is expected to lead and account for 37.4% of the market by 2019. On the basis of end user, the commercial aircrafts segment is expected to lead, and account for 39.3% of the global air traffic control equipment market by 2019. Asia Pacific is expected to be the key geographical area leading in the market, followed by Europe.

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