The covid pandemic it slowed down her run, but didn’t stop her. There space economy it was worth 370 billion dollars in 2021 and in about 20 years it could reach a trillion dollars worldwide. Technological development drives this growth trend: satellite communication systems but also cargo space vehicles attract the interest and capital of companies and investors, favoring the birth of startups specialized in the space economy. Innovations that also find fertile ground in other fields of application, starting from the fight against climate change and the enhancement ofInternet of Things (IoT).
A growing market
The space economy includes all public and private activities that affect the space economy: it is a supply chain that includes 130 government agencies, 150 research and development centers and about 10,000 companies. A report of Klecha & Co.an independent pan-European investment bank specializing in the tech sectors, has calculated the global value of this industry: after a 4% drop recorded in 2020 due to the health emergency, the sector has reached 370 billion dollars in 2021 (+6% compared to the previous year), and it is estimated that it could exceed the threshold of 393 billion in 2022. According to analysts, the sector will rise to 642 billion dollars over the next ten years and in 2040 it could cross the trillion milestone.
It’s mostly the apps B2C driving this trend: in particular, navigation and satellite communication systems are among the priority sectors for development, representing respectively 50% and 41% of the total value of the market. However, it also grows there demand for cargo spacecraftsatellite launches and dedicated infrastructure for greater space exploration, to which private companies are trying to respond.
Another area is the space travel marketwhich has seen growing competition from private sector leaders, such as Virgin Glactic, SpaceX e Blue Origin: 64 commercial trips were made in 2021, more than double compared to previous years.
Capitals in space
The evolution of the sector can also be explained by the strong interest aroused in investors. Approximately $264 billion has been earmarked for the past ten years 1,727 companies operating in the space economy: more specifically, it was above all satellite technologies such as that which pushed companies and funds to open their wallets Gpsgeospatial intelligence and satellite communications.
A race in which the startup: Investments in these companies hit a new record of $15 billion in 2021, beating the previous one by $7.7 billion of 2020, as indicated by the report “Start-Up Space 2022” Of Bryce Tech. Furthermore, since January of this year, the startups have raised financial resources for a total of $13.8 billion in 236 round.
The challenges of security
The technologies that make up the heart of this economy can be used for both civilian and military purposes, making them potential targets for hackers. As the authors of the study recall Klecha & Co.during the war between Russia e UkraineSatellite modems in Europe have been disabled in a cyber-attack, prompting global operator Viasat to carry out a ‘hard reset’ to continue providing communications. Hence the importance of international collaboration on the subject of cyber securityas there is no shortage of points of vulnerability in ground systems and network equipment needed to control space systems.
Space technology applications
Not only commercial travel and satellite systems, the innovations of space economy find fertile ground in other areas as well. An example is the promotion of renewables and the fight against climate change: weather satellites allow you to monitor and predict the power of photovoltaic systems, providing information to improve their performance. Furthermore, satellite communications increase the potential and uses ofInternet of Thingsguaranteeing IoT connectivity in remote places, on ships or on long-distance journeys. Finally, high-resolution satellite images can enhance the experience provided by virtual reality technologies, while remote sensing offers a valuable contribution to archaeological work, thanks to images taken from aerial or space platforms that can be analyzed anywhere in the world.