GVR Report cover Space Robotics Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Space Robotics Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Solution (Services, ROVs), By Application (Near Space, Deep Space), By Organization Type (Commercial, Government), And Segment Forecasts, 2020 - 2027

  • Report ID: GVR-4-68038-256-3
  • Number of Pages: 115
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Range: 2016 - 2018
  • Industry: Technology

Report Overview

The global space robotics market size was valued at USD 3.89 billion in 2019 and is expected to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.7% from 2020 to 2027. The need for efficient repair, service, and maintenance of geostationary satellites is bolstering the demand for space robots. Cost-effectiveness, better productivity, and the ability to perform in the extreme space environment are the prime factors driving the demand for space robotics technology. Moreover, the successful implementation of future space programs, such as on-orbit manufacturing and assembly in the International Space Station (ISS) and lunar surface innovation initiative by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), requires sophisticated robotics systems.

The U.S. Space Robotics Market Size, by Solution

Factors, such as technological developments, the growing use of autonomous systems in space, and an increasing number of space programs, are expected to contribute to market growth. NASA has identified several robotics areas that are required in its space technology roadmap to 2035. Similarly, the European Space Agency (ESA) is planning technology roadmaps in space robotics through funding several projects by the European Commission, such as PERASPERA and SpacePlan 2020. Project PERASPERA aims at developing an integrated master plan for space robotics technology within the 2023-2024 timeframe. Other nations, such as China, Russia, India, and Japan, also announced their space programs involving robotics technology.

Robotics and autonomous systems are instrumental in the current and future space exploration missions. Space robots are mission-defined machines capable of performing several tasks, such as exploration, satellite servicing, and maintenance. The robots extend the human ability to operate and explore in space by providing greater handling capabilities to astronauts. Modern space robots represent a multi-disciplinary approach in the field of engineering and space science. As a result, the application base of space robotics technology has widened, ranging from assisting the crew to autonomously operating on a new planetary surface.

Emerging technologies, such as Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Deep Learning (DL), are widely being used in the robotics industry. Several organizations are developing AI-based robots that provide greater exploration benefits and enhanced mobility in space. These robots can operate with minimum human aid and perform highly complex tasks for a longer duration. In 2018, the German Aerospace Center (DLR) launched CIMON, an AI assistance robot to support astronauts in their daily tasks at ISS. Int-Ball is an AI-based robot developed by the JAXA to take automatic pictures and videos in the ISS. Int-Ball is successfully deployed and operational in the Japanese Kibo module of the ISS.

Space Robotics Market Trends

The amateur astronomers and other observers are witnessing more active satellites every month, with over 2,500 orbiting the Earth currently. Earlier, satellite communication involved GEO spacecraft, but now Non-Geostationary Satellite Orbit (NGSO) communications constellations, including Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) and Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellites, are taking to the skies. Approximately 50,000 active satellites are expected to orbit overhead within a span of ten years if the current internet plan proposals are approved and considered. A large number of satellited will be developed, manufactured, and launched on an unprecedented scale even if the most ambitious plans do not come to pass.

The increasing growth in satellite launches is fueling the demand for on-orbit servicing and assembling, thereby increasing the demand for robotics. Furthermore, because of the high number of satellites that are carried into orbit in the past decades, the space environment surrounding the Earth has been heavily chaotic with fragments that are becoming an increasing endangerment for current and future space missions. Such conditions have given rise to increased demand for robotics for active debris removal and servicing in orbit. In addition to In-Space Robotic Assembly (ISRA) and Extra-Vehicular Activity (EVA), dexterous robotic manipulators are being utilized to capture, maintain, and de-orbit defective and operational satellites. With the growth of such missions, the demand for space robotics is expected to elevate in the near future.

Moreover, with the increase in the number of space exploration programs, the data generated by satellites is increasing. It is getting difficult to manage such huge data, which requires additional technologies such as AI and ML. A single robot used in planetary exploration is not able to cover wider or topologically different areas to acquire all the required information. Such challenges are expected to give rise to multi-robot systems. The usage of multiple robots will allow increasing locomotion by combining several specialized vehicles to explore planetary missions. The usage and adoption of such a multi-robot system are expected to drive the market in the near future.

With the recent advancements in technology, the expedition to space and related activities has become ever exciting. However, discovering space is quite risky and hard. For instance, having a complete know-about the atmosphere, surface conditions, temperature, and soil composition excites engineers, astronauts, scientists, and space agencies to explore more, but not at the cost of humans. This is where robotics solutions come into the picture as a way out. Autonomous systems and robotics play an instrumental role in the current and future space exploration missions. The national space agencies, such as Roscosmos State Corporation for Space Activities (Russia), the ESA, the NASA in the U.S., China National Space Administration, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency, and the ISRO, are capitalizing in various space robotics projects for maintaining and servicing, along with scaling the space exploration activities. The robotic solutions improve the ability of astronauts to operate and explore in space by providing them better handling capabilities.

Solution Insights

The services segment led the market in 2019 and accounted for the largest revenue share of over 38%. The segment will retain its dominant position; however, the Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) segment is expected to register the fastest CAGR from 2020 to 2027. The ROVs segment is further categorized into rovers/spacecraft landers, space probes, and others. Rovers are the planetary surface exploration robots that are designed to perform several tasks, such as image capturing, planet exploration, digging, and data analysis & transmission. The upcoming space missions, such as Luna 25 by Roscosmos, Spacebit Mission One by the U.K., ALINA by Germany, and Mission One by NASA, are expected to drive the demand for rovers/spacecraft landers.

The Remote Manipulator System (RMS) segment is expected to register a significant growth rate over the forecast period. RMS can retrieve, deploy, and handle satellite payloads and assist astronauts in maintenance activities. The growing demand for space-based services, such as satellite servicing, surface mobility, de-orbiting services, and re-supply services, are expected to propel the RMS segment growth. RMS is further segmented into robotic arms/manipulator systems, gripping & docking systems, and others. Robotic arms are poised to witness significant growth in advanced space systems as they are used for assisting astronauts in lifting and handling heavy objects in space. Canadarm and Dextre are the two robotic arms that are presently attached to ISS.

Application Insights

The near-space application segment accounted for the highest revenue share of over 43% in 2019. Near space or orbital robots can be used for repairing satellites, assembling large space telescopes, and deploying assets in space for scientific exploration. The near-space segment is further segmented into space transportation and exploration, in-space maintenance, and others. The space transportation segment is expected to exhibit a strong growth rate over the forecast period owing to the demand for resupply for the ISS and servicing the existing geosynchronous satellites.

The deep-space segment is expected to register the maximum CAGR over the forecast period. Deep space robots or planetary robots play a vital role in observing, surveying, and extracting extra-terrestrial surfaces. The robotic system is crucial for deep space exploration programs to extend human reach into space, expand planetary access capabilities, and enhance human operation efficiency by supporting the astronaut crew in the space operations. Exploration robots, autonomous spacecraft, human-assistive robots, and piloted aircraft are some of the robotic systems that are gaining momentum in the market.

Organization Type Insights

The government segment captured the largest revenue share of over 84% in 2019. Several R&D activities and satellite launches for defense & security purposes are escalating the demand for robotics technologies in this segment. Moreover, increasing emphasis on space and satellite technology for military & defense activities is driving the segment growth. Various governments are also funding R&D activities related to space and robotics applications. For instance, in 2017, the U.K. government aided the FAIR-SPACE Hub program for the development of robotics and AI for the space mission. The FAIR-SPACE Hub is working collaboratively with some private companies to enable future space robots to repair satellites, manufacture satellite parts in space, assemble large space telescopes, remove space debris, and deploy infrastructure. Such government initiatives and funding programs are creating growth prospects for the market.

Global Space Robotics Market Share, by Application

The commercial segment is estimated to register the fastest CAGR from 2020 to 2027 as commercial investments in space missions is increasing gradually. Private companies are continuing their successful mission to low Earth orbit, providing space transportation and space & flight support to International Space Station. The surge in demand for satellite servicing, refueling, and mission extension services provides new business opportunities to private companies.  Moreover, NASA is planning to end direct federal funding for the ISS by 2025 and adopt a commercial approach associating several commercial partners to the Moon and Mars mission. The government of India announced the formation of the Indian National Space Promotion and Authorization Centre (IN-SPACe) to promote and guide private companies in space business through favorable policies and encouraging regulatory environment. As a result, a new business model and space capabilities are expected to emerge in the private sector.

Recently, NASA awarded contracts worth USD 370 million to private companies for the moon exploration project. The contract is awarded to 14 different companies, including Lockheed Martin, United Launch Alliance, Intuitive Machines, Astrobotic, and SpaceX. Among these, Intuitive Machines is working on a robotic mission to the lunar surface, which is expected to be launched next year. All these factors are expected to drive the growth of the commercial segment over the forecast period.

Regional Insights

North America accounted for the largest revenue share of over 41% in 2019. The regional market growth is attributed to the strong space capabilities of NASA and CSA. Both organizations are investing huge amounts in R&D and technology enhancement to execute space exploration initiatives. NASA is looking to build the in-space infrastructure for long-term space exploration and development of lunar gateway. This can be achieved by developing a complex lunar robotic mission. Moreover, this gateway provides the opportunity for commercial missions to the moon surface, which will help pioneer new technologies, such as robotic precursors for future human missions beyond Earth’s orbit, spaceflight systems, and crew mobility. All these projects for space and moon exploration add up to the industry development prospect.

Space Robotics Market Trends by Region

Asia Pacific is estimated to be the fastest-growing regional market from 2020 to 2027. Asia Pacific is the first region to adopt a correlation approach of using geospatial information services and space technology to enhance resilience and mitigate disaster risk. The countries from the region are expected to work collaboratively through a regional action plan for a sustainable future. This helps countries with limited space capabilities, such as Mongolia, to work with space technology leaders, such as China, India, and Japan. Moreover, the upcoming space programs and exploration missions, such as Chandrayaan-3 by India and Chang'e 7 robotic lunar exploration missions by China, are expected to provide a new horizon to the regional market.

Europe is also expected to witness prominent growth rate over the forecast period. The ESA has been developing technology roadmaps in RAS through various European Commission funded projects such as SpacePlan 2020 and PERASPERA. Numerous technological needs or challenges in RAS that are widely acknowledged by the international space community. Technological developments, automation in space, and a cumulative number of space programs, are expected to contribute to market growth.

Canada is at the forefront in delivering robotic arms to the space station. To date, the country has given two robotic arms; Canadarm and Canadarm2. The country is working on the development of Canadaarm3, which is expected to be launched by 2026.Developments in mobility and manipulation, robotic sensing & perception, onboard & ground-based autonomous capabilities, and human-robot integration is expected to drive the market over the forecast period.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

The competitive landscape of the market is changing rapidly. The conventional national organizations, such as NASA and ESA, are the market’s principal entities. However, commercial enterprises have showcased their intent and are entering the arena. Commercial enterprises are developing the means for space exploration and exploitation missions. Mars mission by SpaceX, asteroid mining by Bradford Space, and space tourism by Blue Origin are the commercial programs by private entities. Moreover, the participation of private players in the space industry can reduce the investment burden and enhance innovation. As a result, government organizations, such as NASA and ESA, are collaborating with the private firms for their space programs.

These companies are actively working on developing new solutions for exploration and transportation in space. For instance, Astrobotic Technology, Inc. established the Future Missions and Technology (FM&T) team to develop new robotics technology for future space missions. Altius Space is developing a new technique that can ease satellite operations, including refueling and repairing. Some of the prominent players in the global space robotics market include:

  • Altius Space

  • Astrobotic Technology, Inc.

  • BluHaptics, Inc. (Olis Robotics)

  • Honeybee Robotics

  • Intuitive Machines, LLC

  • Maxar Technologies

  • Metecs, LLC

  • Motiv Space Systems, Inc.

  • Northrop Grumman Corp.

  • Oceaneering International, Inc.

Space Robotics Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2020

USD 4.01 Billion

Revenue forecast in 2027

USD 5.70 Billion

Growth rate

CAGR of 5.7% from 2020 to 2027

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2016 - 2018

Forecast period

2020 - 2027

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD million/billion and CAGR from 2020 to 2027

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

Segments covered

Solution, application, organization type, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Latin America; MEA

Country scope

U.S.; Canada; U.K.; Germany; France; China; Japan; India; Brazil; Mexico

Key companies profiled

Altius Space; Astrobotic Technology, Inc.; BluHaptics, Inc. (Olis Robotics); Honeybee Robotics; Intuitive Machines, LLC; Maxar Technologies; Metecs, LLC; Motiv Space Systems, Inc.; Northrop Grumman Corp.; Oceaneering International, Inc.

Customization scope

Free report customization (equivalent up to 8 analysts working days) with purchase. Addition or alteration to country, regional, and segment scope

Pricing and purchase options

Avail customized purchase options to meet your exact research needs. Explore purchase options

Global Space Robotics Market Segmentation

This report forecasts revenue growth at the global, regional, and country levels and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2027. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global space robotics market report on the basis of solution, application, organization type, and region:

Global Space Robotics Market Segmentation

  • Solution Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROV)

      • Rovers/Spacecraft Landers

      • Space Probes

      • Others

    • Remote Manipulator System (RMS)

      • Robotic Arms/Manipulator Systems

      • Gripping & Docking Systems

      • Others

    • Software

    • Services

  • Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • Deep Space

      • Space Transportation

      • Space Exploration

      • Others

    • Near Space

      • Space Transportation

      • Space Exploration

      • In-space Maintenance

      • Others

    • Ground

  • Organization Type Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • Commercial

    • Government

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Million, 2016 - 2027)

    • North America

      • U.S.

      • Canada

    • Europe

      • Germany

      • U.K.

      • France

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • Japan

      • India

    • Latin America

      • Brazil

      • Mexico

    • Middle East & Africa

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