Underwater Drone Market (By Type: Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV), Hybrid Vehicles; By Application: Defense & Security, Scientific Research, Commercial Exploration, Others; By Propulsion System: Electric System, Mechanical System, Hybrid System; By Product Type: Micro, Small and Medium, Light Work-Class, Heavy Work-Class) - Global Industry Analysis, Market Size, Opportunities and Forecast 2020 - 2027

Category : Automotive, Transportation and Logistics | Published at : July-2021 | Delivery Format : PDF | Status: Published | Pages : 190

The global underwater drone market is expected to grow at a CAGR of around 11.8% from 2020 to 2027 and expected to reach the market value of around US$ 7,500.2 Mn by 2027.

Report coverage

Market Underwater Drone Market
Analysis Period 2017 - 2028
Base Year 2020
Forecast Data 2021 - 2028
Segments Covered By Type, By Application, By Propulsion System ,By Product Type and By Geography
Regional Scope North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and Middle East & Africa
Key Companies Profiled The Boeing Company, Deep Ocean Engineering, Inc., Teledyne Marine Group, Oceaneering International, Inc., PowerVision Inc., Robosea, Blueyerobotics, BUBBLE, Blueye, CHASING-INNOVATION, and among others
Report Coverage
Market Trends, Drivers, Restraints, Competitive Analysis, Player Profiling, Regulation Analysis
Customization Scope 10 hrs of free customization and expert consultation


Underwater drones are also known as autonomous underwater vehicles and unscrewed underwater vehicles. Underwater drones can be used for underwater survey missions that include the detection and mapping of submerged wrecks, rocks, and obstructions that can pose a navigational hazard for commercial and recreational vessels.

Market Dynamics

Big calls for "Underwater drones in defense sector" bolster the growth of global market

According to a report released by the National Defense Industrial Association, the Navy has previously planned to spend a significant amount of money on robotics platforms that will be ramped up in the coming years. According to Bloomberg Government, the sea service's future years defense program calls for approximately US$ 12 Bn for unmanned aircraft, surface vessels, and underwater systems between 2021 and 2025. Out of which US$ 7.9 Bn would be assigned for drones in the coming years. An additional US$ 1.9 Bn would is allocated for underwater vessels or UUVs. The Navy plans to spend US$ 941 Mn on USVs and UUVs alone in 2021, a 129% increase over 2019.

Underwater drones in oceanographic research has 100% gains in the worldwide market

According to the ACM report, autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs) are gaining popularity for oceanographic research and other underwater tasks. By incorporating underwater drones, these robotic systems enable researchers to gather information in ways that were previously impossible due to the use of ships and boats. Seabed 2030, a collaboration of two non-profit organizations (NPO), aims to map the entire ocean floor in less than two decades. Since its inception in 2017, the project has increased the percentage of the total seabed that has been surveyed from about 6% to 15%. Underwater drones, which are outfitted with a growing array of sensors, sophisticated propulsion systems, and advanced software, assist researchers in mapping the sea floor, understanding currents, visual dead zones, improving water-borne accidents such as tsunami predictions, and many other tasks. Autonomous underwater drones are leaving a new imprint on the global market for oceanographic researchers.

Underwater drone technology threatens the submarines in the forecast period

As technology advances at a rapid pace, with modular systems, relatively cheap and expendable platforms, and the increase in computing power will grow exponentially in the coming years. According to a Nuclear Information Service report, underwater drone technology is already being used in anti-submarine warfare by the US and Chinese naval department. For example, the US Navy has been working on the development of underwater drones known as "swarms," which are groups of drones that work together rather than individually. These swarms can search large areas autonomously, making them ideal for ASW operations. Aside from that, unmanned underwater vehicles known as "gliders" have already been used to track Deepwater Horizon oil spills and radiation levels near Fukushima, Japan.

Market Restraints and Opportunities

Underwater drones can deliver cocaine to other countries in secret, fueling drug trafficking. According to the Insightcrime report, a successful Detroit telecommunications businessman secretly funded the development of underwater drones, which could have supplied tonnes of cocaine to Europe. As criminal organizations in Latin America increasingly shift their focus to the lucrative European cocaine market, several advanced methods for smuggling massive amounts of drugs across the Atlantic are being developed. With the advancement of technology, 3D printing has grown in prominence in the global market. New research on 3D printing in underwater drones has been conducted. According to the Europa report, it has developed a project that focuses on the production of underwater drones (remotely operated underwater vehicle-ROV) that are entirely printed in 3D. The drone has been modified so that it can be equipped with a clamp and deployed to collect waste from oceans, lakes, and ports.

Market Segmentation

The global underwater drones are segmented as type, application, propulsion systems, and product type. Based on type, the market is segmented as Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV), Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV), and hybrid vehicles. By application, the market is segregated as defense & security, scientific research, commercial exploration, and others. By propulsion system the market is segmented as electric system, mechanical system, and hybrid system. Furthermore, product type is segmented as micro, small and medium, light work-class, and heavy work-class.

Defense and security hold the dominant market share for the global underwater drones market and will grow at an exponential rate during the forecast period. Because underwater drones have a wide range of applications in expanded military use, they have gained significant traction in the global market. Submersibles used by the Navy to deactivate mines and by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration for fisheries management, for example, are becoming smaller, more flexible, and less expensive. Furthermore, for the growth of the global market, affordable options for state and local governments for inspection of reservoir and water supply systems have gained prominence.

Regional Overview

North America and Europe holds the dominating share; Asia Pacific to witness significant growth in the coming years for underwater drones market

North America has historically dominated the underwater drone market and will continue to do so in the coming years. The presence of competent players manufacturing underwater drones is the most significant factor responsible for the market's phenomenal growth. Europe, on the other hand, has the second largest market share in the underwater drone market. This is because the EU conducts several offshore oil and gas exploration activities. This is one of the major factors driving the growth of the underwater drone market in this region.

In contrast, Asia Pacific is expected to have the fastest growing CAGR for the underwater drone market in the coming years. Among the countries in APAC, China is one of the most active in conducting underwater drone research. For example, in December 2020, China deployed a fleet of underwater drones known as "Sea Wing (Haiyi)" gliders in the Indian Ocean. This newly deployed drone is specialized in such a way that it can operate autonomously for months and conduct various operations for naval intelligence through observations.

Competitive Landscape

The prominent players of the global underwater drones market involve The Boeing Company, Deep Ocean Engineering, Inc., Teledyne Marine Group, Oceaneering International, Inc., PowerVision Inc., Robosea, Blueyerobotics, BUBBLE, Blueye, CHASING-INNOVATION, and among others

Market Segmentation

Market By Type

Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV)
Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV)
Hybrid Vehicles

Market By Application

Defense & Security
Scientific Research
Commercial Exploration

Market By Propulsion System

Electric System
Mechanical System
Hybrid System

Market By Product Type

Small and Medium
Light Work-Class
Heavy Work-Class

Market By Geography

North America
•    U.S.
•    Canada

•    U.K.
•    Germany
•    France
•    Spain
•    Rest of Europe

•    China
•    Japan
•    India
•    Australia
•    South Korea
•    Rest of Asia-Pacific

Latin America
•    Brazil 
•    Mexico
•    Rest of Latin America

Middle East & Africa
•    GCC
•    South Africa
•    Rest of Middle East & Africa

Frequently Asked Questions

Underwater drone market is expected to reach a market value of around US$ 7,500.2 Mn by 2027.

The underwater drone market is expected to grow at a CAGR of around 11.8% from 2020 to 2027.

Based on application, defense & security segment is the leading segment in the overall market.

Underwater drones in defense & security application are one of the prominent factors that drive the demand for underwater drone market.

The Boeing Company, Deep Ocean Engineering, Inc., Teledyne Marine Group, Oceaneering International, Inc., PowerVision Inc., Robosea, Blueyerobotics, BUBBLE, blueye, CHASING-INNOVATION, and among others.

North America is anticipated to grab the highest market share in the regional market

Asia Pacific is expected to be the fastest growing market in the forthcoming years

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