The aerospace and defence industry continues to be a hotbed of innovation, with activity driven by the pressing need for modernisation and the growing importance of emerging technologies such as artificial intelligence and unmanned systems. In the last three years alone, there have been over 174,000 patents filed and granted in the aerospace and defence industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Internet of Things in Aerospace, Defence & Security: Battery thermal management system. Buy the report here.

However, not all innovations are equal and nor do they follow a constant upward trend. Instead, their evolution takes the form of an S-shaped curve that reflects their typical lifecycle from early emergence to accelerating adoption, before finally stabilising and reaching maturity.

Identifying where a particular innovation is on this journey, especially those that are in the emerging and accelerating stages, is essential for understanding their current level of adoption and the likely future trajectory and impact they will have.

180+ innovations will shape the aerospace and defence industry

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which plots the S-curve for the aerospace and defence industry using innovation intensity models built on over 262,000 patents, there are 180+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Within the emerging innovation stage, aircraft powertrain controls, remote-controlled drones, and aircraft anti-collision systems are disruptive technologies that are in the early stages of application and should be tracked closely. UAV swarm control, lidar for vehicle anti-collision, and satellite image smoothing techniques are some of the accelerating innovation areas, where adoption has been steadily increasing. Among maturing innovation areas are sensor-guided aiming assists and aircraft flight control systems, which are now well established in the industry.

Innovation S-curve for Internet of Things in the aerospace and defence industry

Battery thermal management system is a key innovation area in Internet of Things

Battery Thermal Management System (BTMS) is the system that manages, and dissipates the heat generated during the battery operation process.

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 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established aerospace and defence companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of battery thermal management system.

Key players in battery thermal management system – a disruptive innovation in the aerospace and defence industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of different applications identified for each relevant patent and broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of different countries each relevant patent is registered in and reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.

Patent volumes related to battery thermal management system

Company Total patents (2010 - 2021) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
CEA 232 Unlock company profile
Airbus 55 Unlock company profile
Thunder Power Hong Kong 54 Unlock company profile
Safran 44 Unlock company profile
SZ DJI Technology 37 Unlock company profile
Cayago 30 Unlock company profile
Raytheon Technologies 24 Unlock company profile
Rolls-Royce Holdings 23 Unlock company profile
Boeing 20 Unlock company profile
Naval Group 16 Unlock company profile
Berkshire Hathaway 15 Unlock company profile
MBDA Holdings 11 Unlock company profile
Textron 10 Unlock company profile
Ford Motor 9 Unlock company profile
Kitty Hawk 9 Unlock company profile
Wisk Aero 9 Unlock company profile
Robert Bosch Stiftung 9 Unlock company profile
Siemens 9 Unlock company profile
Hyundai Motor Group 9 Unlock company profile
H55 8 Unlock company profile
BAE Systems 8 Unlock company profile
Porsche Automobil Holding 7 Unlock company profile
Obrist Technologies 7 Unlock company profile
Mercedes-Benz Group 7 Unlock company profile
Lucid Group 7 Unlock company profile
Tesla 6 Unlock company profile
SoftBank Group 6 Unlock company profile
Ocean Power Technologies 5 Unlock company profile
Toyota Motor 5 Unlock company profile
Autel Robotics USA 5 Unlock company profile
Kia 5 Unlock company profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

CEA is the leading patent filer in the sector, developing the technology primarily as a safety measure in atomic energy solutions. Airbus is the second leading patent filer and utilises the technology in order to advance electric aircraft capabilities. Battery thermal management will be critical to ensuring the viability and safety of all-electric aircraft. There are numerous aerospace companies advancing electric aircraft capabilities, and defence companies including Boeing, Safran, Raytheon and Rolls-Royce have all filed patents to this effect.

In terms of application diversity, Porsche is the leader, followed by Thunder Power Hong Kong and Safran. In terms of geographic diversity, Cayago is the leader, followed by Tesla and Kia.

To further understand how Internet of Things is disrupting the aerospace and defence industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Thematic Research - Internet of Military Things.

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GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.