Investment in research, development, and procurement of counter-unmanned aerial systems (C-UAS) systems is projected to rise globally in the coming years due to the surge in drone threats.

Verdict has conducted a poll to assess the impact of the economic crisis due to COVID-19 on the investment in global C-UAS systems. Analysis of the poll results shows that the views are mixed.

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While 31% of the poll respondents opined that COVID-19 will not impact the investment in C-UAS technologies, 35% opined that the investment will decrease, including 20% who foresee a normal decline and 15% who anticipate a significant fall.

On the contrary, 34% of the respondents were of the view that investment in C-UAS systems is set to grow, including 19% who expect a normal growth and 15% who opined that the investment will increase greatly.

The analysis is based on 254 responses received from the readers of Verdict’s defence sites, Airforce Technology, Army Technology, and Naval Technology, for a poll conducted between 11 February and 01 March 2021.

COVID-19 impact on C-UAS market

Global investment bank Canaccord Genuity projects that the drone ecosystem will grow and benefit from the structural changes brought by the COVID-19 pandemic. Major defence manufacturers have either launched or developed C-UAS systems amid the growing need to counter threats.

Northrop Grumman’s Forward Area Air Defence Command and Control (FAAD C2) system was chosen by the US Department of Defence (DoD) as an interim command and control system for future counter-small unmanned aerial system (C-sUAS) procurements in July 2020.

Another major defence supplier, Lockheed Martin successfully proved the capability of the Mobile Radio Frequency-Integrated Unmanned Aircraft System Suppressor (MoRFIUS) C-UAS solution to intercept a target in February 2021. The company won a contract to develop and deliver high-powered-microwave (HPM)-based airborne counter-drone systems in November 2018.