Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

Specific challenge: Aviation has an important impact on the environment and EU citizens due to emissions such as greenhouse gas (CO2), pollutants (NOx), particulate matter (e.g. black carbon), contrails, cirrus cloud and noise, some of them potentially affecting the health of the exposed population. Aircraft manufacturing also makes use of a variety of materials and chemicals. If no actions would be undertaken, the impact of aviation on our environment in Europe would significantly grow due to the expected increase of air transport traffic by 5% every year. While Clean Sky and its potential successor programme address the reduction of the environmental impact of aircraft with a targeted entry into service in 2025, there is a need to work on significant improvements for aircraft that will enter into service after 2025.

Scope: The proposed research and innovation actions could target the reduction of emissions and noise at the source, i.e. accelerating the development of green technologies for the aircraft and its engines, including the impact of the use of alternative and more sustainable energy sources than those currently used.

Research and innovation could also target new approaches to an environmentally friendly overall aircraft lifecycle which require the insertion of the environmental concern in all the successive phases: design, production, assembly, maintenance, overhaul, repair, retrofit, recycling and disposal.

Finally, research and innovation could target greener ground operations, technologies and procedures, including the integration of larger quantities of sustainable fuels and better use of power from the terminal.

The Commission considers that proposals requesting a contribution from the EU of between EUR 5 to 8 million each would allow this specific challenge to be addressed appropriately. Nonetheless, this does not preclude submission and selection of proposals requesting smaller or larger amounts.

Expected impact: Actions will demonstrate in a quantified manner their potential to mature the Technology Readiness Level (TRL; please see part G of the General Annexes), in the range of 1-6, of technologies and concepts that can make a significant contribution towards one or several of the following high level goals:

·      To reduce CO2 by 75%, NOx and particles by 90% (per passenger and per kilometre), perceived noise by 65% in 2050 (baseline year 2000), to reduce the emission of local atmospheric pollutants.

·      To contribute to reduce the impact of Europe's air transport operations on the environment.

·      To produce by 2050 competitive air vehicles that are designed and manufactured in a resource efficient way and are recyclable.

Actions will also provide ad-hoc indicators to measure the expected progress in terms of, for example, reduction of CO2, NOx, noise, sustainability criteria, etc. when comparing the situation before the start of the action and after the implementation of its results.

Type of action: Research and Innovation Actions

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