ADS was delighted to attend a reception at the House of Lords on 10 April to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the creation of the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) and a landmark £3.6 billion funding milestone. The event, hosted by Lord Harrington with a speech by both him and Industry Minister Alan Mak MP, was an excellent opportunity to highlight the range of ATI funded projects and its importance to our aerospace sector. Two excellent examples, among the over 400 ATI R&D funded projects, have been in the development of Rolls Royce’s UltraFan engine family, and the Airbus-led Wing of Tomorrow programme – the next generation of carbon composite aircraft wings. And there are many others!

ADS continues to be proud to champion the UK’s innovative and vibrant aerospace sector and looks forward to helping further showcase it this year at Farnborough International Airshow 2024 and beyond. This landmark decade of the ATI, and the significant funding it has managed throughout its history, has enabled it to deliver a long-term plan for aerospace innovation that has been welcomed and widely supported across the sector. ADS CEO Kevin Craven said:

“The UK’s world-leading aerospace sector provides high-skilled jobs throughout the country and is renowned for excellence in innovation, technology and sustainable development. Set against a backdrop of increasing global competition, the Aerospace Technology Institute has been pivotal in attracting industry co-investment and driving continued UK leadership in innovation, making it a true partner for our industry for the last decade.

ATI support has been invaluable to our industry – from the largest OEMs to the SMEs that are fundamental to our industrial ecosystem. Long may its investment continue!”

Moving forward, we continue to promote measures to support early-stage innovation and subsequent industrialisation of relevant green technologies to reach decarbonisation, and the UK government’s “net zero” goals by 2050.  The work and funding of ATI is a significant enabler in trying to make this a reality.  The net zero carbon roadmap is the guiding document in articulating how UK industry will reach “Jet Zero” (net zero in aviation).  First published in 2023 by the Sustainable Aviation Coalition, of which ADS is a member, it is updated regularly.

Aerospace clearly also has interdependencies with other sectors in order to reach net zero, including with energy suppliers, not only in the continued development of sustainable aviation fuels, but also those who have not historically been natural bedfellows for aviation, such as the National Grid and hydrogen producers. To meet this challenge the ATI’s Fly-Zero programme sets out the many possible ways forward.  This is underpinned by the UK Government’s Advanced Manufacturing Plan, especially with £975m funding dedicated to aviation, which continues the momentum of innovation and future funding towards 2031 and beyond. ADS remains fully supportive of ongoing funding commitments, as this is vital in helping the UK aerospace sector to meet the technological challenges and deliver ground breaking advances being made in approaching the Jet Zero targets.

ADS will also set out in greater detail the policy landscape, challenges and opportunities facing the aerospace sector, ahead of the Farnborough International Airshow.  So, look out for that…