According to a study by NSR, the satellite industry will see the launch of over 12,000 satellites of all volume ranges for the next decade through the lens of rising market trends and the Covid-19 effect. The need for satellite services continues to expand, leading to further growth in the industry.
So far, six launch setbacks have occurred in 2020- one from Iran, three from China, and two from the US. Compared to past years, there is already a high number of failures for the year: five faults in 2019 and three defeats in 2018.
Iran’s Simorgh states that four out of six setbacks were the result of the initial introduction of new rockets, such as the malfunction of Virgin Orbit’s flight test, and one breakdown attributed to a spacecraft that had previously crashed many times.
Almost all of the launch setbacks in 2020 could link with an increased risk of failure owing to new technologies and inaugural orbital launches. Still, existing players are also noticing the impacts on their plans attributable to stressed logistics issues and supply chains.
Rocket Lab’s first commercial flight failure occurred after a delay in launch operations because of the pandemic crisis; interestingly, the company’s planned emphasis on reducing turnaround times between flights for their test plans was on.
Many players, such as Arianespace plus SpaceX, have faced delays because of a combination of factors such as weather conditions. Arianespace opted to reshuffle its launch schedule and move Ariane 6’s debut off into next year.
There is also other, less assessment reporting, which contributes to the overall situation. Space programs focus highly on being able to collect money from several sources. Since the global recession has triggered massive investment pullback, financial resources are much scarcer than before. The businesses that have bad the hardest hit are those in early or pre-revenue-generating phases or those engaged in high-risk verticals and extended runways.
These include players worldwide, exploring highly competitive and cash-intensive business processes, such as rocket growth. Start-up failures and delays will be on par with the course. Numerous external stresses in the face of economic instability will inevitably continue to impact all players involved in 2020 and beyond. Market consolidation and exits are to be anticipated as more limited business resources expand over time.
In conclusion, we note that compounding all the losses that 2020 has presented does not, however, give a clear image of the current situation in the sector and ought not to be used to measure our advancing trajectory. The pandemic is not the villain to blame for all the industry’s struggles – we must bear in mind that competitive turmoil was substantial before the financial crisis in 2019. A more optimistic solution is to keep the expected direction of development and stability still and proceed.