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Soldier Modernization – Thematic Research

Digital soldier system kits started being developed in light of the importance of soldier versus platforms, the ideas of combined and joint arms capabilities, and the need to transform soldier into a weapon system.

Human life became increasingly important as public opinion was not always ready to accept such a cost. Somalia was a good example of that sentiment and that was also visible during the Kosovo air campaign, when no troops on the ground were involved, while operations in Afghanistan and Iraq pushed force planners to provide better equipment and protection to dismounted troops.

The modernization of soldier’s equipment hasn’t followed the same pace as that of platforms, starting from the platform-centric era to the network-centric of today. C4I (Command, Control, Communication, Computer, Intelligence) systems were developed in order to connect the platforms together, by creating stovepipes of information generation and dissemination. Force structures relied in platform-intensive plans, especially when those plans were addressing the necessities of near-peer combat operations. What was missing was the technological leap that would transform dismounted troops to a weapon system, with superior situational awareness, survivability and firepower delivery and guidance capabilities that could change the face of battle.


Dismounted soldier systems (DSS) significantly increase the combat capabilities of soldiers, especially in military operations in urban terrain. Such systems provide unparalleled situational awareness, digitization and connectivity to dismounted soldiers through the extensive use of sensors and, command and control systems.

However, one important drawback is that with every additional piece of equipment comes a weight increase. SWaP-C (Size, Weight, Power and Cost) is ever present when developing and designing a new piece of equipment. That was also the case with digital soldier kits, which significantly increased the soldier’s weight and fatigue during the recent operations in Afghanistan. Modernization programs will incorporate a demand for a lighter, more flexible mix of smart materials to allow combat soldiers to operate efficiently.

DSS is a market segment that continually develops and builds upon the latest technologies in the fields of material technology, EO/IR, C4I, IoMT, AI and robotics. Despite the currently high cost of an integrated soldier system, there is a clear trend for the military planners to acquire at least elements of it, such as EO/IR for night operations, C4I for better connectivity and information sharing, and protective equipment better protection, creating opportunities for the industry.

Reasons to Buy

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Corporations: Helps CEOs in all industries understand the disruptive threats to their competitive landscape.

Gain in-depth understanding about the underlying factors driving demand for Soldier Modernization in the top spending countries across the world and identify the opportunities offered by each of them.

Strengthen your understanding of the market in terms of demand drivers, industry trends, and the latest technological developments, among others.

Identify the major channels that are driving the global soldier modernization report, providing a picture about future opportunities that can be tapped, resulting in revenue expansion.

Channelize resources by focusing on the ongoing programs that are being undertaken by the defense ministries of different countries for Soldier Modernization.

Make correct business decisions based on thorough analysis of the total competitive landscape of the sector with detailed profiles of the top Soldier Modernization systems and platforms providers around the world which include information about their product portfolio and key programs wherever available

Companies Mentioned

Colt, FN Herstal, Heckler & Koch, Milrem Robotics, Izmash, Elbit Systems, Leonardo, FLIR Systems, ECA Group, QinetiQ, Rheinmetall, Nexter Robotics, Gentex, BAE Systems, Revision, 3M, Rohde & Schwarz, Thales, Elbit Systems, Saab, Raytheon, Thales, Lockheed Martin, L3Harris, Parrot, Theon Sensors, MSA Safety, Aselsan, Propper, Seyntex, Belleville, Crye Precision, Elmon, Parnissari, TenCate, Siamidis, American Apparel, Blackhawk, Zastava, CZ, Sig Sauer, WB Group, Telerbo, Newcon, Kazan Optical Plant, NPZ Optik, Atos, Rostec.

Table of Contents


Thematic briefing


Lessons learned


Technology trends

Macroeconomic trends

Regulatory trends

Industry analysis

Key global soldier modernization programs


Value chain

Key technologies and products


Leaders in soldier modernization

Challengers in soldier modernization


Appendix: Our thematic research methodology


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