The aerospace and defense industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity is driven by geopolitical competition, environmental concerns, and the growing importance of technologies such as advanced battery chemistries and next-generation avionics. In the last three years alone, there have been over 237,000 patents filed and granted in the aerospace and defense industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Drones in defense: automated drone battery management. Buy the report here.

Smarter leaders trust GlobalData


Data Insights Drones in defence: Automated drone battery mgmt

Buy the Report

Data Insights

The gold standard of business intelligence.

Find out more

According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over 206,000 patents to analyze innovation intensity for the aerospace and defense industry, there are 110 innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.

Automated drone battery management is a key innovation area in drones

Automated drone battery management refers to methods, systems, and technologies for controlling and optimizing the operation and charging of batteries in unmanned aerial vehicles (drones). These systems utilize several methods including monitoring battery states, calculating charging level needs, building charging ‘profiles’, and implementing recipient-assisted recharging processes to efficiently manage the power supply of drones during flight missions. This can derive the greatest efficiency from available power, a crucial application for both the defense and civil markets for drones.

GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 80+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established aerospace and defense companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of automated drone battery management.

Key players in automated drone battery management – a disruptive innovation in the aerospace and defense industry

‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.   

‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.  

Patent volumes related to automated drone battery management

Company Total patents (2021 - 2023) Premium intelligence on the world's largest companies
Hyundai Mobis 13 Unlock Company Profile
Rolls-Royce 3 Unlock Company Profile
AeroVironment 5 Unlock Company Profile
Deutsche Telekom 9 Unlock Company Profile
CyPhy Works 4 Unlock Company Profile
Mercedes-Benz Group 7 Unlock Company Profile
Wing Aviation 30 Unlock Company Profile
Toyota Motor 6 Unlock Company Profile
Hyundai Motor 46 Unlock Company Profile
Nidec 8 Unlock Company Profile
Rakuten Group 3 Unlock Company Profile
Renault 4 Unlock Company Profile
General Electric 11 Unlock Company Profile
Korea Electric Power 5 Unlock Company Profile
Alarmcom 18 Unlock Company Profile
Fachhochschule Kiel 4 Unlock Company Profile
Honda Motor 17 Unlock Company Profile
BAE Systems 7 Unlock Company Profile
Mitsubishi Electric 8 Unlock Company Profile
Panasonic 8 Unlock Company Profile
Kyocera 4 Unlock Company Profile
General Motors 12 Unlock Company Profile
Raytheon Technologies 8 Unlock Company Profile
Textron 13 Unlock Company Profile
Nippon Telegraph and Telephone 5 Unlock Company Profile
Safran 8 Unlock Company Profile
Boeing 26 Unlock Company Profile
LG 5 Unlock Company Profile
Airbus 8 Unlock Company Profile
Denso 5 Unlock Company Profile
Walmart 17 Unlock Company Profile
SoftBank Group 13 Unlock Company Profile
Kia 18 Unlock Company Profile
Ford Motor 5 Unlock Company Profile
Hi-Tech Robotic Systemz 4 Unlock Company Profile
Archer Aviation 9 Unlock Company Profile
SZ DJI Technology 49 Unlock Company Profile
Skycatch 3 Unlock Company Profile
Kitty Hawk 4 Unlock Company Profile
Aurora Innovation 2 Unlock Company Profile
Volocopter 3 Unlock Company Profile
Nileworks 18 Unlock Company Profile
Autel Robotics USA 5 Unlock Company Profile
Mojo Mobility 2 Unlock Company Profile
H55 5 Unlock Company Profile
Hyliion 2 Unlock Company Profile
Webasto Charging Systems 5 Unlock Company Profile
Shenzhen Autel Intelligent Aviation Technology 2 Unlock Company Profile
Parallel Flight Technologies 3 Unlock Company Profile
The French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission 3 Unlock Company Profile

Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics

Boeing, a major US aerospace manufacturer who builds drones including the upcoming MQ-25 and MQ-28 UAVs for the US military, has the most patent activity for battery management systems, filing  26 patents from 2015 to 2023. It is followed by two other US companies, Textron and Archer Aviation – the latter working on an electric vertical takeoff and landing (E-VTOL)  ‘air taxi’ aircraft, for which efficient battery management is vital for commercializing the air taxi design and meeting safety requirements.

In terms of application diversity however, the UK’s Rolls-Royce leads the pack as it continues to expand its efforts in electric propulsion methods. A German E-VTOL firm, Volocopter, comes second, followed by Boeing. By geographic reach, France’s Safran leads the way, with its GENeUSPACK being just one example of a management system designed for multiple electric vehicle (EV) applications in several global markets. Safran is followed in the scope of its international patent filing by Boeing and Airbus.

To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the aerospace and defense industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Drones in Aerospace and Defense.

Data Insights


The gold standard of business intelligence.

Blending expert knowledge with cutting-edge technology, GlobalData’s unrivalled proprietary data will enable you to decode what’s happening in your market. You can make better informed decisions and gain a future-proof advantage over your competitors.


GlobalData, the leading provider of industry intelligence, provided the underlying data, research, and analysis used to produce this article.

GlobalData’s Patent Analytics tracks patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Textual analysis and official patent classifications are used to group patents into key thematic areas and link them to specific companies across the world’s largest industries.