Home > Aerospace & Defense > Rocket Propulsion Market

Rocket Propulsion Market Size, By Type (Rocket Motor, Rocket Engine), By Fuel Type (Hybrid, Liquid, Solid), By Orbit Type (Lower Earth Orbit (LEO), Medium Earth Orbit (MEO), Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO), Beyond Geostationary Orbit (BGEO)), By Vehicle Type (Manned, Unmanned), By End-use (Commercial, Defense & Civil) COVID-19 Impact Analysis, Regional Outlook, Growth Potential, Competitive Market Share & Forecast, 2021 – 2027

  • Report ID: GMI3047
  • Published Date: Jul 2021
  • Report Format: PDF

Industry Trends

Rocket Propulsion Market size exceeded USD 5 billion in 2020 and is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of over 8% from 2021 to 2027. The market growth can be attributed to the increasing investments in space launch activities and the growing number of rocket testing activities to launch satellites.

Rocket Propulsion Market Overview

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Market leaders backed by government support are investing significantly in R&D for the development of advanced rocket propulsion systems. The U.S. government allocated a fund of USD 23.3 billion to NASA in 2021, a 3% increase compared to the previous year’s fund, supporting the industry growth. The development of reusable rockets to lower the cost of launch will reduce the access barrier to space and drive the market expansion during the forecast period.

Huge capital investments are key factors challenging the market progression. According to NASA, the average cost to launch a spacecraft is USD 450 million. High operational costs and risk of failure in spacecraft are limiting launching operations. SpaceX, Boeing, and other private companies are developing cost-saving rockets that can bring down the launch cost, thus supporting the industry expansion.

The COVID-19 pandemic had no significant impact on rocket propulsion activities. China has carried out 34 launches and the U.S has launched several crewed missions & spy satellites in 2020. Despite the COVID-19 crisis, both countries have been able to maintain a high number of launches. Small and medium-sized enterprises, which form the bulk in the commercial space sector struggled to cope with the COVID-19 crisis due to supply chain disruptions and lower market demand for components.

Increasing space launch activities will stimulate the segment growth

Rocket Propulsion Market Size

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The rocket engine segment is expected to witness 8.5% growth rate by 2027 owing to the increased space launch activities by the U.S, China, and Russia. China has launched several rockets in recent years. According to the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS), China led the world with 32 launches in 2019. Increasing orbital launch activities in China will spur the growth of rocket engines over the forecast period.

High-density and a high specific impulse of liquid propellants are driving usage in rocket propulsion activities

The liquid propellant segment dominated more than 70% of the rocket propulsion market share in 2020. The high usage of liquid propellant in rockets is credited to its high-density and high specific impulse. According to NASA, liquid hydrogen fuel is extensively used by American space programs and other countries for rocket propulsion activities. Active investments in R&D by prominent market players and rapid advancements in rocket propulsion are set to foster the industry progression.

Rising satellite launches in lower-earth orbit (LEO) for communication

LEO segment is poised to grow at a CAGR of around 8.5% through 2027 led by the increasing demand for the observation of climate change. A lower earth orbit requires the lowest amount of energy for satellite placement, provides high bandwidth, and allows frequent revisits to low altitude places on the Earth. Space stations and satellites are more accessible for crew & servicing. LEO is commonly used for communication applications since less energy is required to place a satellite in the Earth’s lower orbit.

Growing deployment of unmanned vehicles in deep space exploration

The unmanned vehicle segment held 90% of revenue share in 2020. Unmanned spacecraft explore the solar system more effectively and cheaply than manned vehicles. Increasing initiatives by aerospace research centers and private companies to launch unmanned space shuttles will augment the segment expansion.

High R&D expenditures by governments and private companies for commercial application

The commercial rocket propulsion segment is estimated to attain 9% gains by 2027 due to the increasing expenditure in R&D activities by governments and private players associated with space & moon exploration development. Growing advancements in the miniaturization of satellites, reusable rockets, and lowered per launch costs are opening many business opportunities beyond aerospace and defense.

Increasing space launch activities by China over the last decade

China Rocket Propulsion Market

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China rocket propulsion market size was valued at over USD 1.5 Billion in 2020 on account of the growing space launch programs by the government in the last decade. China has become one of the fastest-growing markets in rocket propulsion with an increase in space launch activities.

High focus on launching cost-effective rockets

Prominent leaders in the market include Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, Blue Origin, Lockheed Martin Corporation, Airbus Defense and Space, General Dynamics OTS, The Boeing Company, IHI Corporation, Northrop Grumman, China Great Wall Industry Corporation, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Rocket Lab, Yuzhmash, Moog Inc., NPO Energomash, and L-3 Communications. Market participants are focusing on the development of cost-effective rocket propulsion systems for deep space mission activities and partnerships to support domestic companies.

The rocket propulsion market research report includes in-depth coverage of the industry with estimates & forecast in terms of revenue in USD from 2021 to 2027 for the following segments:

Market, By Type

  • Rocket Engine
  • Rocket Motor

Market, By Fuel

  • Liquid Fuel
  • Solid Fuel
  • Hybrid Fuel

 Market, By Orbit

  • Low Earth Orbit (LEO)
  • Medium Earth Orbit (MEO)
  • Geostationary Earth Orbit (GEO)
  • Beyond Geosynchronous Orbit (BGEO)

Market, By Vehicle

  • Manned
  • Unmanned


Authors: Preeti Wadhwani, Prasenjit Saha

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) :

The global market size of rocket propulsion was valued at over USD 5 billion in 2020 and is poised to record a CAGR of more than 8% through 2027, driven by the higher investments in space launches and the rising number of rocket testing activities to launch satellites.

The rocket engine propulsion market is poised to record a CAGR of more than 8.5% through 2027 due to increased space launch activities in the U.S, China, and Russia.

Unmanned vehicles accounted for around 90% of the market share in 2020 and will grow with the rising preference over manned vehicles to explore the solar system effectively and affordably.

The commercial applications will grow at a CAGR of 9% through 2027 fuelled by higher R&D spending by various governments and private players.

China market size surpassed USD 1.5 billion in 2020 and will see expansion with the rise in the number of government-led space launch programs.

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Premium Report Details

  • Base Year: 2020
  • Companies covered: 20
  • Tables & Figures: 197
  • Countries covered: 9
  • Pages: 200

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