COVID-19 IMPACT SURVEY MAY 2020
The global Underwater Acoustic Communications market is projected to reach US$3 billion by 2025, driven by continuous developments in wireless communication technologies that break through the water-air barrier. Underwater acoustic communication is a technique of sending and receiving messages below water. Carrying out communication underwater is a difficult task because of various factors such as strong signal attenuation manly over long ranges, multi-path propagation, small available bandwidth, and time variations of the channel. Acoustic communication systems are intrinsically reliable, extremely sensitive, inherently rugged, and are competitively priced. Representing a vital technology, underwater acoustic communication is extensively employed for transmitting and receiving signals under water. While there are several commissioning methods for underwater acoustic communication, hydrophones are the most popular approach. Underwater communication involves various challenges like channel time variations, minimal present bandwidth, multi-path propagation and long-range signal attenuation, which can be mitigated using acoustic communication. Over the years underwater wireless communication has emerged to be important for marine military and commercial activities. Underwater communication networks (UWCN) are rapidly growing to service submarine operations, coastal surveillance systems, monitor autonomous oil-rigs, conduct ocean research & underwater exploration etc. Acoustic transmission ranks primary among the technologies deployed given the ability of sound to travel far in water. Development in robust signal processing systems continues robustly with the newest being improvements in advanced frequency-hopping spread spectrum (FH-SS) for multimedia underwater acoustic communications. There is also growing R&D focus shed on resolving transmitted sound losses in underwater acoustic channels.
The increasing focus of companies on medium-range shallow water communication for scientific R&D and oil & gas exploration is expected to create a new market for these systems. The market growth is also favored by strong focus to gain insights into ocean depths for monitoring and controlling of commercial activities including underwater equipment dedicated to mineral and oil mineral extraction along with commercial fisheries and underwater pipelines. Increasing adoption of unmanned and autonomous underwater vehicles (UUVs and AUVs) with advanced sensors along with vehicles used for strategic applications related to surveillance and threat detection is another major driver. Another factor spurring growth is the increase in underwater exploration projects for environmental protection. These systems are witnessing growing popularity over traditional technologies for seabed mapping and data collection. Underwater acoustic communication is also finding increasing adoption as pre-warning system for underwater earthquakes or tsunamis and to monitor underwater pollution and habitat. There is a robust demand for high-capacity, reliable underwater acoustic networks to support R&D efforts intended to address issues related to transmission of data signals across shallow water regions.