NSR Press Releases

NSR Forecasts High Altitude Platforms (HAPs) as $2 Billion Opportunity

44% increase in HAPs units over the next 10 years 


Cambridge, MA, January 10, 2017  NSR’s High-Altitude Platforms (HAPs)  report, released today, highlights opportunities for growth via current and new airships, balloons, and pseudo-satellites will reach over $2B in cumulative revenue over the next decade. NSR’s industry-first HAPS report forecasts a 44% increase in HAPs units and an 85% increase in associated revenue over the coming ten years. Diverse applications such as communications, remote sensing, surveillance, navigation, scientific research, and technology testing, as well as new apps, such as adventure tourism, will emerge as key HAPs market drivers.

“With over 30 platforms in-service, in testing or under development around the world, the interest in using HAPs in different ways is reaching new heights, leading to steady industry growth,” states NSR. “Over the past two decades, HAPs have been slow to reach maturation for many applications. Some areas even saw a decline due to confusing regulations.  But the current momentum in funding and market demand looks to carry the HAPs industry forward.”

HAPs, including balloons, airships, and pseudo-satellites, offer advantages over satellites and UAS at relatively lower cost.  As such, new commercial players are investing in HAPs, notably for beaming Internet to under-served areas. Government funding, which has dipped in the past decade, is key for growth in these areas, in particular for technology development and smaller airships.. The recent renewed interest from the military, via scaled-back and more focused programs, could mean that a surge in investment is on the horizon helping the industry emerge stronger.

High-altitude airship programs have struggled from overpromising and underfunding, but  interest in utilizing these platforms still endures in many markets, especially in the military; however, a wildcard exists in offering communications services for regional coverage.  High-altitude balloons, the only truly operational HAPs market, have a large following in the scientific research community, and benefit from improved technology. Given its competitive price point, its revenue growth will be the strongest of all HAPs markets.  As for pseudo-satellites, it is still an industry in its infancy and will compete with lower altitude UAVs if the technology can be matured and has the greatest opportunity for revenue growth compared to other HAPs.


About the Report

High-Altitude Platforms (HAPs) expands NSR’s industry leading market research in the aerial and space realm. This first-ever study on platforms and vehicles flying above controlled airspace builds on NSR’s extensive experience in evaluating unmanned aerial vehicles and atmospheric platform capabilities worldwide. HAPs includes trends and opportunities to help readers better understand this market’s future potential.and forecasts the growth in HAPs units and revenue from equipment and services over the next decade.

For additional information on this report, including a full table of contents, list of exhibits and executive summary, please visit nsr.com or call NSR at +1-617-674.7743.


About NSR

NSR is the leading global market research and consulting firm focused on the satellite and space sectors. NSR’s global team, unparalleled coverage and anticipation of trends with a higher degree of confidence and precision than the competition is the cornerstone of all NSR offerings. First to market coverage and a transparent, dependable approach sets NSR apart as the key provider of critical insight to the satellite and space industries. Contact us at info@nsr.com to discuss how we can assist your business.