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Strengthening competitiveness



Strengthening competitiveness

Background & policy context: 

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 'strengthening the competitiveness' of the aeronautical industry in the global market, responds to the challenge of delivering more economical, performant and better quality products and services.

Strategic Objectives: 

The objectives of the programme are:

  1. to reduce aircraft development costs by 20% and 50% in the short and long term respectively;
  2. to reduce aircraft operating costs by 20% and 50% in the short and long term respectively through reduction in fuel consumption, maintenance costs and other direct operating costs;
  3. to increase passenger choice with regard to travel costs, time to destination, onboard services and comfort.
Programme organisation: 

The research areas include:

  • integrated design and product development
  • manufacturing
  • maintenance
  • aerodynamics
  • structural weight reduction
  • equipment weight and power take-up reduction
  • propulsion
  • crew workload
  • cabin environment
  • on-board passenger services
  • flight test techniques and related measuring technologies
  • new aircraft concepts and breakthrough technologies
Leading Institutions:

European Commission

Type of funding:
Participating countries: 
Number of projects:
Projects covered: 

Some projects covered are: 

  • ADELINE: Advanced air-data equipment for airliners
  • ADLAND: Adaptive landing gears for improved impact absorption
  • ADVACT: Development of advanced actuation concepts to provide a step change in technology used in future areo-engine control systems
  • AEROSME V: Support for European aeronautical SMEs
  • AROSATEC: Automated repair and overhaul system for aero turbine engine components
  • ATENAA: Advanced technologies for networking in avionic applications
  • COCOMAT: Improved material exploitation of a safe design of composite airframe structures by accurate simulation of collapse
  • COMPACT: A concurrent approach to manufacturing induced part distortion in aerospace components
  • COMPROME: Monitoring, optimisation and control of liquid composite moulding processes
  • DIALFAST: Development of innovative and advanced laminates for future aircraft structure
  • EWA: European Windtunnel Association
  • FRESH: From electric cabling plans to simulation help
  • HASTAC: High stability altimeter system for transponders and air data computers
  • ICE: Ideal cabin environment
  • ITOOL: Integrated tool for simulation of textile composites
  • PIBRAC: Piezo brake actuator
  • RETINA: Reliable, tuneable and inexpensive antennas by collective fabrication processes
  • SUPERTRAC: Supersonic transition control
  • WALLTURB: A European synergy for the assessment of wall turbulence
  • WISE: Integrated wireless sensing.
Project Profiles:
  1. A Concurrent Approach to Manufacturing Induced Part Distortion in Aerospace Components
  2. A European Synergy for the Assessment of Wall Turbulence
  3. Adaptive Landing Gears for Improved Impact Absorption
  4. Advanced Air-Data Equipment for Airliners
  5. Advanced Low-Cost Aircraft Structures
  6. Aeronautical Application of Wrought Magnesium
  7. Aeronautical Stakeholders Tools for the European Research Agenda 2
  8. Aeronautical Stakeholders' Tools for the European Research Agenda 3
  9. Aerospace Nanotube Hybrid Composite Structures with Sensing and Actuating Capabilities
  10. Aerothermal Investigations on Turbine End-walls and Blades II
  11. Airborne New and Advanced Satellite Techniques and Technologies in a System Integrated Approach
  12. Automated Repair and Overhaul System for Aero Turbine Engine Components
  13. Detached Eddy Simulation for Industrial Aerodynamics
  14. Detailed Multi-Physics Modelling of Friction Stir Welding
  15. Development and Innovation for Advanced ManufacturIng of Thermoplastics
  16. Development of Advanced Actuation Concepts to Provide a Step Change in Technology Use in Future Aero-engine Control Systems
  17. Development of Innovative and Advanced Laminates for Future Aircraft Structure
  18. Development of Short Distance Welding Concepts for Airframes
  19. Economic Advanced Shaping Processes for Integral Structures
  20. European High Lift Programme II
  21. External EMC Simulation for Radio Electric Systems in the Close Environment of the Airport
  22. Flight Reynolds Number Testing
  23. From Electric Cabling Plans to Simulation Help
  24. Generation of Advanced Helicopter Experimental Aerodynamic Database for CFD Code Validation
  25. High Performance Damping Technology for Aircraft Vibration Attenuation and Thermo-Phonic Insulation
  26. High Stability Altimeter System for Air Data Computers
  27. Ideal Cabin Environment
  28. Improved Material Exploitation of a Safe Design of Composite Airframe Structures by Accurate Simulation of Collapse
  29. Innovative Fatigue and Damage Tolerance Methods for the Application of New Structural Concepts
  30. Installed Performance of Antennas on Aero Structures
  31. Integrated Design and Product Development for the Eco-efficient Production of Low-weight Aeroplane Equipment
  32. Integrated Tool for Simulation of Textile Composites
  33. Long-Term Advanced Propulsion Concepts and Technologies
  34. Magnetoelastic Energy Systems for Even More Electric Aircraft
  35. Monitoring, Optimisation and Control of Liquid Composite Moulding Processes
  36. Multifunctional Structures
  37. Multiscale Analysis of Large Aerostructures
  38. New Aircraft Concepts Research
  39. New Tools and Processes for Improving Machining of Heat-Resistant Alloys Used in Aerospace Applications
  40. Piezoelectric Brake Actuators
  41. Rear Fuselage and Empennage Flow Investigation
  42. Reliable, Tuneable and Inexpensive Antennae by Collective Fabrication Processes
  43. Supersonic Transition Control
  44. Synthesis of Aeronautical Compliant Mechanical Systems
  45. Testing for Laminar Flow on New Aircraft
  46. Towards Design and Processing of Advanced, Competitive Thermal Barrier Coating Systems
  47. Turbine Aero-Thermal External Flows 2
  48. Ultra High Temperature Materials for Turbines
  49. Unsteady Effects of Shock Wave Induced Separation
  50. Using Image Processing as a Metrological Solution
  51. Value Improvement through a Virtual Aeronautical Collaborative Enterprise
  52. Virtual Engineering for Robust Manufacturing with Design Integration
Contact Email: 
European Commission
FP6 Aeronautics Info Desk, Directorate-General for Research (DG Research), SDMA 21
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