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Aeronautics and Space - Priority Thematic Area 4 (PTA4)



Aeronautics and Space - Priority Thematic Area 4 (PTA4)

Background & policy context: 

Priority Thematic Area 4 falls under the Focusing and Integrating Community Research programme of the Sixth Research Framework Programme 2002-2006 (FP6). The priority thematic areas represent the bulk of expenditure under FP6. The intention is to focus Community research efforts to generate a substantial leveraging effect which, together with actions in other parts of FP6 and through open co-ordination with other regional, national, European and international frameworks, will result in a coherent and highly effective common endeavour.

Over the past few decades, Europe's outstanding technological and industrial capabilities in aeronautics and the exploitation of space have made important contributions to the standard of living and economic development and growth. Excellence in aeronautics and space can contribute to the creation of highly skilled jobs, improving the trade balance and competitiveness of other related economic sectors.

Strategic Objectives: 

The Aeronautics and Space thematic priority 4 (PTA4) aims to integrate the EU's research efforts, thereby consolidating the position of the European aeronautics and space industry vis-à-vis increasingly strong global competition. Moreover, it aims to exploit the research potential in the Member States, candidate countries and other associated countries in this sector with a view to improving safety and environmental protection.

Programme organisation: 

Aeronautics area
In their report 'Vision 2020', leaders of the European aeronautics sector highlighted the need to optimise EU and national research efforts around a common vision and a strategic research agenda. Following this approach, research will concentrate on four main strands. The scope of the research action spans commercial transport aircraft including systems and components, as well as the on-board and ground-based elements of air-traffic management systems.

Space area
The aim is to contribute to the implementation of the European Strategy for Space, particularly by targeting and focusing efforts with ESA and Member States on a small number of joint actions of common interest. A special emphasis is put on activities complementing those of space agencies (integration of terrestrial and space systems/services and demonstration of end-to end services). This includes the following activity areas: 

  • the European satellite navigation system GALILEO
  • the evolution of satellite-based information services (GMES)
  • satellite telecommunications.

The research activities carried out within this thematic priority area will include exploratory state of the art research on subjects closely related to one or more topics within it. Two complementary approaches are used: one receptive and open, and the other proactive.

Leading Institutions:

European Commission

Type of funding:
Programme funding arrangements and funding conditions: 

The overall budget covering the four-year period 2003-2006 is EUR 1,182 million for PTA4.

Total Budget: 
1182 million euros
Participating countries: 
Most European countries (EU members and candidate countries)
Number of projects:
Projects covered: 


Project Profiles:
  1. A PLAtform for Topology Optimisation incorporating Novel, Large-Scale, Free Material Optimisation and Mixed Integer Programming Methods
  2. Accurate High Temperature Engine Aero-thermal Measurements for Gas-turbine Life Optimisation, Performance and Condition Monitoring
  3. Adaptive Higher-Order Variational Methods for Aerodynamic Applications in Industry
  4. Advanced Bonding Technologies for Aircraft Structures
  5. Advanced In-Flight Measurement Techniques
  6. Advanced Remote Tower
  7. Advanced Sensors and Novel Concepts for Intelligent and Reliable Processing in Bonded Repairs
  8. Advanced Technologies for Networking in Avionic Applications
  9. Aerodynamic and Thermal Load Interactions with Lightweight Advanced Materials for High-Speed Flight
  10. Aerodynamic Validation of Emission Reducing Techniques
  11. Aircraft and ATM Automation Symposium
  12. Aircraft External Noise Research Network and Coordination
  13. Alpine Safety, Security and Informational Services and Technologies
  14. ATM RD project identification and information Network
  15. Automated Diagnosis for Helicopter Engines and Rotating Parts
  16. Automated Digital Fuel System Design and Simulation Process
  17. Automated Preform Fabrication by Dry Tow Placement
  18. Autonomous Damage Detection and Vibration Control Systems
  19. Broadband VHF - Aeronautical Communications System Based on MC-CDMA
  20. Cabin Noise Reduction by Experimental and Numerical Design Optimisation
  21. Cellular Structures for Impact Performance
  22. Civil Aircraft Security Against MANPADs
  23. Clearance of flight control laws using optimisation
  24. Computation of Coaxial Jet Noise
  25. Cooling of Seat Electronic Box and Cabin Equipment
  26. Cooperative Approach to Air Traffic Services
  27. Coordinating Action on Key Aerodynamic Technologies II
  28. Cost Effective Integral Metallic Structure
  29. Cost Effective Small AiRcraft
  30. Development of an Innovative LIDAR Technology for New Generation ATM Paradigms
  31. Development of New Magnesium Forming Technologies for the Aeronautics Industry
  32. Digitally Adjustable Tooling for manufacturing of Aircraft panels using multi-point FORMing methodology
  33. Distributed and Redundant Electro-mechanical nose wheel Steering System
  34. Distributed equipment Independent environment for Advanced avioNic Applications
  35. Don Q Air
  36. E-enabled Cabin and Associated Logistics for Improved Passenger Services and Operational Efficiency
  37. ECCOMAS 2004 - the Fourth European Congress on Computational Methods in Applied Sciences and Engineering
  38. ECCOMAS 2006 Conferences
  39. Environmentally Friendly, Inter City Aircraft Powered by Fuel Cells
  40. Environmentally Responsible Air Transport
  41. European Aeronautics Science Network - Phase II
  42. European airport Movement Management by A-SMGCS
  43. European airport Movement Management by A-SMGCS, Part 2
  44. European Communities Aeronautics REsearch +
  45. European Personal Air Transportation System STUDY
  46. European Windtunnel Association
  47. Fifth Aeronautics Conference- Transport Technologies for the Future
  48. Flexible and Near-Net-Shape Generative Manufacturing Chains and Repair Techniques for Complex Shaped Aero Engine Parts
  49. Foldable, Adaptable, Steerable, Textile Wing Structure for Delivery of Capital Loads
  50. Fuel Cell Application in a New Configured Aircraft
  51. Fundamentals of Actively Controlled Flows with Trapped Vortices
  52. Future High-Altitude Flight - an Attractive Commercial Niche?
  53. Global Monitoring for Security and Stability
  54. helicoPter and aEronef naviGation Airborne SystEms
  55. Improvement of Safety Activities on Aeronautical Complex systems
  56. In-flight Lightning Strike Damage Assessment System
  57. Innovative Operational UAV Integration
  58. Installed Performance of Antennas on Aero Structures
  59. Integrated Wireless Sensing
  60. Landing Software for Small-medium Aircraft on Small-medium Airfields
  61. Lightning Protection for Structures and Systems on Aircraft Utilising Lightweight Composites
  62. Magnetoelastic Energy Systems for Even More Electric Aircraft
  63. Main Annulus Gas Path Interactions
  64. Marine Environment and security for the European Area
  65. Market-based Impact Mitigation for the Environment
  66. Materials, Process and CAE Tools Developments for Pre-impregnated Carbon Binder Yarn Preform Composites
  67. Merging the Efforts: Russia in European Research Programs on Aeronautics (ILA)
  68. Mid-term Networking Technologies Rig and Iin-flight V for Avionic Applications
  69. Modular Joints for Aircraft Composite Structures
  70. More Open Electrical Technologies
  71. Networking the Sky for Aeronautical Communications
  72. NEW Aero Engine Core concepts
  73. New Generation of Aeronautical Bearings for Extreme Environmental Constraints
  74. NEw Standby Lidar InstrumEnt
  75. New Track integrated Electrical Single Flap Drive System
  76. Non-deterministic simulation for CFD-Based Design methodologies
  77. Novel Innovative Competitive Effective Tilt Rotor Integrated Project
  78. Predictive methods for combined cycle fatigue in Gas Turbine Blades
  79. Promoting Scientific Cooperation between Europe and China in the Field of Multiphysics Modelling, Simulation, Validation, Experimentation and Design Methods in Aeronautics
  80. Rapid Production of Large Aerospace Components
  81. Reference Information Specifications for Europe
  82. Safe Automatic Flight Back and Landing of Aircraft
  83. Safety Improved with a New concept by Better Awareness on airport approach Domain
  84. Secure ATM CDMA Software-Defined Radio
  85. Services for Collaborative SMEs Aerospace Technical Research
  86. Simulating Aircraft Stability and Control Characteristics for use in Conceptual Design
  87. Simulation-Based Corrosion Management for Aircraft
  88. Single European Sky Implementation Support through Validation
  89. Smart Maintenance of Aviation Hydraulic Fluid using an Onboard Monitoring and Reconditioning System
  90. Smart Technologies for stress free Air Travel
  91. Stimulate Aerospace Research and Technology START in Associate Candidate Countries (START)
  92. Structural Health Monitoring in Action
  93. Support for Development and Utilisation of Galileo Applications in Poland and Other Accession Countries (GALILEOAPP)
  94. Support for European Aeronautical SMEs
  95. Support for European Aeronautical SMEs
  96. Support for SMEs Collaborative Aeronautical Technical Research-Integrated Projects
  97. Support to 7th European Conference on Turbomachinery - Fluid Dynamics and Thermodynamics, Athens, March 2007
  98. Support to Sixth European Conference on Turbomachinery - Fluid Dynamics and Thermodynamics, Lille, March 2005
  99. Technologies to IMProve Airframe Noise
  100. Thermal infra red hyperspectral sensing assistance to clandestine weapon surveillance under working conditions linking fixed airborne or space borne systems
  101. Toward Innovative Methods for Combustion Prediction in Aero-Engines
  102. Turbulence and Transition Modelling for Special Turbomachinery Applications
  103. Validation of an Experimental Airship Transportation for Aerospace Logistics
  104. Vulnerability Analysis for Near Future Composite/Hybrid Air-Structures: Hardening via New Materials and Design Approaches Against Fire and Blast due to Accidents or Terrorist Attacks
Contact Name: 
Aeronautics Info Desk
Contact Email: 
European Commission
 Directorate-General for Research (DG Research)
Contact country:
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