Drones represent a focused application for many different types of sensors. In broad terms, the sensors in these applications can be classified as optical, acoustic, position, touch, environment and other sensors. More specifically, the sensor types include: inertial sensors (accelerometers, gyroscope, magnetometers, tilt), image sensors (infrared, thermal, multispectral, 3D), speed and distance sensors (radar, LiDAR, proximity), position sensors (GNSS/GPS), pressure sensors (barometric, differential), current sensors, ultrasonic sensors, light sensors, altimeter sensors and flow sensors as well as chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear defense (CBRN) and other sensors.
The QY Research report explains that a drone is also known as unmanned aircraft system (UAS) or unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV), essentially, an airborne machine. It may be remotely controlled or fly independently through embedded systems with software-controlled flight plans, GPS and onboard sensors.
End-user market segments for drones include energy and utilities, precision agriculture, media and entertainment, defense, personal, law enforcement, security & surveillance, and others (retail and education). Specific applications include navigation, collision detection and avoidance, data acquisition, motion detection, air pressure measurement, power monitoring and others
According to the MarketsandMarkets report, the drone sensor market was valued at USD 274.7 million in 2017.
The Research and Markets report states that the drone sensor market is expected to grow from USD 345.7 million in 2018 to USD 1,007.6 million by 2023, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 23.86% between 2018 and 2023.
Key factors driving the growth of the market include the rising demand for:
- mapping & surveying and positioning for accurate navigation
- crop vigor analysis for precision farming
- payload delivery for commercial and logistic sectors