Climate change is one global topic which is currently world-wide discussed by politicians and scientists. The Forth Assessment Report of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has stirred an intensive public debate on future aeronautical research challenges and policies. That report identifies aviation to contribute 2-3 percent of today's total global anthropogenic CO2 emissions. This prompted the International Air Transport Association (IATA) to set the long term challenge of Zero Emission Aviation by 2050 and emphasised the importance of addressing these challenges on a global level. The answersand solutions to these demands are expected to be given by research.
Worldwide aerospace research organisations are currently not coordinated and do not have a representative who can react to the political questions and demands. The German Aerospace Centre (DLR) took this need as opportunity to organise in 2008 and in 2010 a Summit and invited key leaders of international aeronautical research to address the question of the Air Transport of the Future in the context of climate change. In 2008, the participants discussed possibilities and strategies. In 2010 the participants founded the International Forum for Aviation Research (IFAR) which aims to find potential solutions for ecologically and economically efficient flights.
The project IFARS is a Support Action which aims to support IFAR within the next 3 years. The strategic goal of IFAR is to generate and to collaborate in the aviation research challenges and technology avenues worldwide.
IFAR will develop a Road Map addressing the most important questions regarding the aviation challenges: the global air transport system's efficiency, atmospheric impact but also other topics as safety, noise and new technologies.
Growing global aviation research
The EU has funded an international aviation research organisation to grow its membership and promote research for sustainable aviation.
The aviation industry is one of the major contributors to global carbon dioxide emissions. The International Forum for Aviation Research (IFAR) was established in 2010 to address this growing problem by supporting research into sustainability in aviation.
http://www.ifar.aero (IFARS) (International Forum for Aviation Research Support Action) was a project established to help IFAR grow and improve its services to the international aviation research community. IFAR currently includes 26 aviation research organisations from around the world, representing more than 40 000 researchers globally.
The major outcome of IFARS was a framework document to guide aviation research in the coming years. To create this, members collected lists of existing goals and objectives of member organisations, as well as a 'wish list' of future technologies and concepts.
In particular, this wish list focused on two topics: air traffic service efficiency and noise. IFARS highlighted current research in these topics and identified directions for future technological innovation.
These lists also included which IFAR members are working on which topics, and where in the world this research is taking place. This information is all publicly available on the IFAR website, along with a database of IFAR PhD researchers.
Other project activities focused on coordinating three annual IFAR summits, bringing together Forum members to discuss the future of aviation and improve the framework document. The work of IFARS will contribute to environmentally friendly aviation practices around the world.