The aerospace and defense industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by automation, environmental sustainability, and operational efficiency, and the growing importance of technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), Internet of Things (IoT), unmanned systems and satellites. In the last three years alone, there have been over 237,000 patents filed and granted in the aerospace and defense industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Drones in defense: emergency response drones. Buy the report here.
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 206,000 patents to analyze innovation intensity for the aerospace and defense industry, there are 110 innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Emergency response drones is a key innovation area in drones
Emergency response drones refer to unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that are specifically designed and used for emergency situations. Equipped with advanced technologies, such as thermal imaging cameras and communication relay systems, these drones excel in search and rescue operations, disaster assessment, and medical supply delivery. They provide crucial aerial surveillance, enhancing situational awareness in disaster-stricken areas, while also contributing to security efforts and the handling of hazardous materials.
GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 90+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established aerospace and defense companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of emergency response drones.
Key players in emergency response drones – a disruptive innovation in the aerospace and defense industry
‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.
‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.
Patent volumes related to emergency response drones
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Bombardier is one of the leading patent filers in the emergency response drones segment. The Canadian aerospace company’s patent portfolio reflects a commitment to developing innovative solutions for rapid aerial assistance in critical situations. It filed patents related to the area of drone navigation and safety, which aligns with Bombardier's focus on safe and efficient deployment of emergency response drones.
In terms of application diversity, AeroVironment leads the pack, while Bombardier and Airbus stood in the second and third positions, respectively. By means of geographic reach, Airbus held the top position, followed by AeroVironment and Boeing.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the aerospace and defense industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Drones in Aerospace and Defense.