High Altitude Pseudo Satellite UAVs are UAVs that can fly over a region at altitude of 10-20 km for extended periods of time (months together) by using Solar Cells, and perform the roles that a satellite can, for a fraction of the cost, and more effectively.
Typical Applications include Remote Sensing, Aerial Surveying, Surveillance, Communication Relay, etc.
My Question is if there is a market for such type of UAVs?
Start with google trends , so here are visualization graphs for UAV and unmanned aerial vehicles in general :
and you have work your way on the more specific granularities that you are searching for. So here you are trying to narrow on how many and where are people searching about UAVs and what are the associated purposes for which they are searching.
Next more than a year back while helping someone else I had stumbled upon this hubspot.com page which does point to some of useful free online tools which you can use for deeper market research on your product.
Nope this is not going to push you neck down in the deep world of market research which I know , you as a student might think to be boring and laborious. Playing around with these tools will give you a wealth of perspective and build faculties in you which will help you decide much better which projects to really even worth the time to think about.
Also on google when I give "unmanned aerial vehicle satellite market" and filter it with the time period of the "Past Year" , I see some interesting articles pop-up which may have helpful content in it.
Also get associated with the drone crowd on Twitter and you will get immensely useful insights which will help you as well as the networking with the appropriate folks of UAV world.
All the best!!
Yes, but there are technical challenges and existing efforts. There really isn't anything successful over 20km that I know of.
If you are going solar power, speed is limited to less than the jet stream current, which essentially means the aircraft can only fly east and often can not maintain location or return to base. While it is possible to overcome, the margins are thin, geographic location plays an impact, and weather must be accounted for regularly.
For more info about markets and tech research the term HALE (High Altitude Long Endurance) and also look into the Facebook Aquila project.