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International cooperation in aeronautics


Specific challenge: In order to leverage resources, mitigate risks and establish long term relationships, the European aeronautics sector should identify topics of common interest and mutual benefit with other regions of the world, in particular where these address societal challenges such as a worldwide safe air transport system, common standards (including for environmental aspects) and win-win situations for technological development. Aeronautics has inherently and increasingly an international dimension because almost all current aircraft programmes involve stakeholders from many different countries. Relations with a number of countries have already been initiated[1] with different levels of maturity and experience, calling for ad-hoc approaches which respect the different situations. For the coming years, actions are called in the two following domains:

1.    To establish or deepen links with countries, building on previously established cooperation where relevant, with the aim to identify subjects of common interest and mutual benefit.

2.    To perform jointly research and innovation actions on topics of common interest, involving the appropriate funding from both sides.

Scope: Proposals should address fully one of the two following domains, the first is opened in 2014 and the second domain is opened in 2015:

1.    Set up platform of communication between EU and Japan including research and innovation stakeholders (industry, research establishments, and academia) and aviation research and innovation funding authorities to maintain a common research and innovation roadmap. This could include organisation of workshops and short term studies to identify preferred areas of common interest and win-win situations, barriers and solutions for improved cooperation in research and technology development, and recommendations for future actions. Proposals should demonstrate good knowledge of research mechanisms in the EU and Japan and take into account past and on-going cooperation initiatives.

2.    The proposed research and innovation actions should address topics of common interest between Europe and the international partners[2]. This may include joint development of technologies which can enhance safety, reduce the impact of aviation on the environment (e.g. innovative aircraft configuration, drag reduction, environmentally friendly aero engines, understanding the mutual impact of aviation on the environment and the climate), mature new materials and manufacturing processes for aeronautics components and structures (e.g. composite materials) and develop numerical and experimental tools for aircraft design (e.g. advanced measurement techniques, use of supercomputing for large scale multidisciplinary applications, modelling of flow physics).

Expected impact:

Regarding domain 1, the action will contribute to deepen and widen cooperation with Japan and maintain a common research and innovation roadmap. Actions could assess their impact by estimating the volume / funding of research and innovation actions which could be undertaken in cooperation between EU and Japan.

Regarding domain 2, actions will demonstrate their potential to mature the level of readiness of technologies and concepts, identify how the project results will be of mutual benefit and evaluate the leverage effect resulting from the coordinating research and innovation funding of EU and international partner (Russia, Japan, Canada or China).

Type of action: 1) 2014: Coordination and Support Actions; 2) 2015: Research and Innovation Actions

[1]     Seventh Framework Programme support actions with Canada(CANNAPE), Brazil - Latin America (Coopair-LA), Japan (SUNJET), China (Aerochina, GRAIN), South Africa (AeroAfrica-EU), Ukraine (AeroUkraine) and United States of America (CooperateUS) plus EU-US Memorandum of Cooperation on civil aviation research and the multinational aviation research forum (IFARs).

[2]     Discussion have been initiated with Russia, Japan, Canada and China; these actions are pending agreements between the EU and international partners and the content of the actions will be further specified in the light of the arrangements currently being defined with them.