An AESA is also referred to as an Active Electronically Scanned Array Radar System. It is predominantly a class of phased array antenna-i.e a computer-controlled array antenna. AESA can steer a beam of radio waves to a particular point in different directions. The system performs this function via its antenna while it is stationed in one location.
AESA is a key component within Active Phased Array Radars (APAR). These systems are classified as multifunction surveillance radars. AESA is a high-end technology that can emit radio waves at multiple frequencies simultaneously. AESA offers abilities to combat jamming and interception since the signal emitted by AESA consists of a collection of frequencies. Thus it becomes difficult for the receiver end to classify this signal from the background noise. Hence warships and fighter jets can make use of this technology to radiate powerful radar signals while maintaining stealth mode.
The overall market for AESA is segmented by Region, Fit, and Platform. The regional segmentation for this market provides a competitive mapping across the regions including North America, Europe, APAC, the Middle East, and the RoW. The fit market is further sub-segmented into Line Fit and Retrofit. While the Platform vertical is further segmented into Land, Air, Naval, and Others.
The market for AESA radars has been expanding owing to the extensive use of this technology within the latest models for fighter jets. The use of this system is anticipated to enhance tracking and modeling of the purgatory during combat scenarios. These radars have been integrated into military aircraft including F35, Eurofighter Typhoon, Boeing F/A-18 E/F, and F-22.
In terms of key players, it is recorded that Northrop Grumman accounts for the largest share within the AESA vertical. As of 2020, the company received a contract for the upgrade of 72 F-16 aircraft for the US Northern command for homeland defense. The order instated the integration of APG 83 Scalable Agile Beam Radar. As of 2019, the company secured its 500th order for AN/APG-81 Fire control AESA radar. This radar was to be integrated into the F-35 Lightning II military aircraft to improve its situational awareness as well as combat abilities. The F-35 Lightning II aircraft was recorded to be the most sold combatant as of the year 2019. Roughly 134 models of the same were sold in 2019. The company aims to deliver 134 additional models in the year 2020. The demand for AESA radars is hereby poised to increase owing to the growth in the value chain for this market.
One of the key complementing technologies that are expected to enhance the development of AESA radars is active protective systems. The integration of this modular technology is expected to increase the lethality associated with an aircraft. The use of this technology is expected to counter incoming threats and increase the survivability of various platforms. The integration of technologies that reduce radar signature is also poised to boost the market growth dynamics for AESA. The increased focus on the safety of military troops is expected to be a key driver for the same.