Report offers global satellite industry snapshot

July 21st, 2017, Published in Articles: EE Publishers, Articles: EngineerIT, Articles: PositionIT


The Satellite Industry Association (SIA), a trade association representing the commercial satellite industry, has recently released its State of the Satellite Report June 2017, reporting on global satellite industry data from 2016.

The report has been prepared by consultancy Bryce Space and Technology, and is based on proprietary surveys, in-depth public information, and independent analysis among other sources.

Satellite industry breakdown according to revenue ($-billion), with further detail of the ground equipment (right) and service (left) segments (December 2016). (Information: SIA/Bryce)

Fig. 1: Satellite industry breakdown according to revenue ($-billion), with further detail of the ground equipment (right) and service (left) segments (December 2016). (Information: SIA/Bryce)

The report estimates the industry to be worth $260,5-billion, with revenues predominantly coming from ground equipment ($113,4-billion) and satellite services ($127,7-billion). The remainder of revenue is made from the satellite launch industry ($5,5-billion) and satellite manufacturing ($13,9-billion). The US still dominates market share (42%) of the global satellite industry, with the non-US satellite industry growing consistently.

Within the satellite services segment, consumer services account for $104,7-billion of the $127,7-billion in revenues, while fixed services comprise 17,4-billion of this revenue, mobile services $3,6-billion, and earth observation $2-billion.

Consumer services revenues for 2016 predominantly came from satellite TV ($97,7-billion), with satellite radio accounting for $5-billion in revenue and broadband for $2-billion. Both satellite radio and broadband revenues grew. Other satellite services that grew in revenue are earth observation and mobile satellite, the latter which includes revenues from the Ku and Ka-band fixed satellite service capacity.

Operational satellites by function (December 2016). (Information: SIA/Bryce)

Fig. 2: Operational satellites by function (December 2016). (Information: SIA/Bryce)

The ground equipment segment on the other hand is dominated by GNSS services, which account for $84,6-billion of revenues in this segment, with consumer equipment (satellite TV, radio and broadband) revenues making up $18,5-billion, and the remainder being network equipment (gateways, VSATs etc.) revenues valued at $10,3-billion. SIA has attributed the growth in satellite ground equipment revenues to satellite navigation and chipset sales.

According to the report, satellite manufacturing is still dominated by the US, which account for $8,9-billion of the $13,9-billion in revenue, with the remaining $5-billion comprising all other global satellite manufacturing. The majority of launch revenue ($3,3-billion), however, is attributed to non-US companies.

Of the 1459 operational satellites, 35% are commercial satellites, 19% are used for earth observation, 14% for government communication, 12% for R&D, 7% for navigation, 6% for military surveillance, 5% for science, 2% for meteorology, and the remaining 2% is divided equally between space observation and non-profit communication.

According to the report, the satellite industry makes up 77% of the space economy as a whole, with other activities accounting for another $77,6-billion of the global space economy which is estimated to be worth a total $339,8-billion.

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