World aeronautics is entering a new age of aviation –the age of sustainable growth– characterised by the need of more affordable, cleaner, quieter, safer and more secure air travel. European aeronautics is committed to play a prime role in shaping aviation for this new age. Research and technology development is essential in responding to this challenge.
The aeronautics research work programme is set against the two top level objectives identified in the Strategic Research Agenda and the Vision 2020 Report:
- to meet society’s needs for a more efficient, safer and environmentally friendly air transport;
- to win global leadership for European aeronautics, with a competitive supply chain, including small and medium size enterprises.
The overall research work programme focuses on the aircraft vehicle, including its systems and components, for commercial transport (comprising regional and business aircraft as well as rotorcraft).
The work programme is structured in four research areas that contribute to achieving the two top-level objectives. They respond to the major challenges identified in the Strategic Research Agenda for European aeronautics. Research from this sub-programme 'improving the environmental impact with regard to emissions and noise' responds to the challenge of meeting the society’s demand for sustainable transport.
The objectives of the programe are:
- to reduce CO2 emissions by 50% per passenger-kilometre in the long term through improved engine efficiency as well as efficiency of the aircraft and its operation;
- to reduce NOx emissions by 80% in the landing and take-off cycle with respect to the ICAO standard and to an Emissions Index of NOx of 5 g per kg of fuel burnt in cruise in the long term (reduction to 10gr. per kg. of fuel burnt in the short term), and other gaseous emissions and particulates;
- to reduce unburnt hydrocarbons and CO emissions by 50% in the long term with respect to the ICAO standard in order to improve air quality at airports;
- to reduce external noise by 4-5 dB and by 10 dB per operation in the short and long-term respectively. For rotorcraft, the objective is to reduce the noise footprint area by 50% and the external noise by 6 dB and 10 dB in the short and long-term.
- to reduce the environmental impact of the manufacture and maintenance of aircraft and its components.
The research areas include:
- structural weight reduction
- equipment weight and power take-up reduction
- external noise
- new aircraft concepts and breakthrough technologies