Exploring India's Spacetech: Upstream and Downstream Realms.

  Oct 12, 2023

Understanding Upstream and Downstream in India's Spacetech Industry

What is 'Downstream' in Spacetech?

In the context of space technology, 'downstream' refers to the services that are enabled by satellites, such as communications, earth imaging, and navigation. These are the applications that directly affect end-users and industries on Earth.

What Does the Deloitte Report Say?

The report by Deloitte India, published in collaboration with the Indian Space Association and NASSCOM, focuses on the downstream opportunities in India's spacetech industry.
It suggests that the demand for satellite-enabled services will be driven by consumer needs, like remote education and seafaring, as well as government mandates.

What About 'Upstream'?

'Upstream' in spacetech refers to the activities related to the development and deployment of satellites and other space assets.
This includes the design, manufacturing, and launching of satellites. While the report focuses on downstream opportunities, the upstream sector is what enables these downstream services.

Market Potential in India

Despite advancements in satellite technologies, India's share in the global spacetech market remains small. The report estimates the market value for satellite internet in remote areas to be around $263 million in the next five years.
Other applications like ecological monitoring and logistics tracking have a market potential rarely exceeding $1 billion. In contrast, older technology like DTH satellite TV has a market potential of $12.69 billion.

What Drives the Demand?

The report emphasizes that it's not just technical challenges that will shape the future of satellite-enabled services.
With constellations of satellites already providing global internet coverage, the demand will be driven by people willing to pay for these services and by government policies.


The Deloitte report highlights the downstream potential of India's spacetech industry, emphasizing that consumer demand and government mandates will drive growth.
While the market potential for newer applications may seem limited now, the downstream sector holds promise for diversification and expansion, enabled by upstream activities.

Downstream Services in Spacetech

Satellite Communication: Providing broadband and telecommunication services to remote and rural areas where traditional networks are unavailable.

Earth Observation: Utilizing satellite imagery for various applications such as agriculture, forestry, land-use mapping, and disaster management.

Navigation and Geolocation: Services like GPS that provide real-time location data for various applications including navigation for vehicles, ships, and aircraft.

Weather Forecasting: Using meteorological satellites to collect data for weather prediction and climate monitoring.

Remote Education: Satellite-enabled internet can facilitate online education in remote areas, bridging the educational gap.

Maritime Monitoring: Tracking ships and fishing vessels for safety, navigation, and monitoring illegal activities like piracy or unauthorized fishing.

Logistics and Supply Chain: Real-time tracking of goods and vehicles, improving efficiency and reducing costs.

Media Broadcasting: Direct-to-Home (DTH) satellite TV services that provide a wide range of channels to even the most remote locations.

Emergency Response: Using satellite communication for coordinating rescue and relief operations during natural disasters or other emergencies.

Environmental Monitoring: Observing environmental factors like deforestation, water quality, and air pollution.

Resource Exploration: Using satellite imagery for exploring natural resources like oil, gas, and minerals.

Healthcare: Telemedicine services enabled by satellite communication can provide medical consultations to remote areas.

Traffic Management: Using geolocation data to manage and control traffic in real-time, reducing congestion and improving road safety.

Retail and Commerce: Satellite data can be used to study consumer behavior and market trends, aiding businesses in making informed decisions.

Scientific Research: Collecting data for various scientific studies including astronomy, earth sciences, and atmospheric studies.

These downstream services are directly influenced by the capabilities of the upstream sector, which involves the development and deployment of satellites.
As technology advances, the range and efficiency of these downstream services are likely to improve.


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