Skip to main content

Stimulating Ukraine – EU Aeronautics Research Cooperation

Final Report Summary - AERO-UKRAINE (Stimulating Ukraine-EU aeronautics research cooperation)

Executive summary:

Ukraine is one of the few countries in the world to have research, engineering and production capabilities across the complete range of aeronautics technologies. Despite these strengths, the participation of Ukrainian aeronautics actors in the European Commission (EC)'s research framework programmes was very low (e.g. approximately 6 contracts won under Sixth Framework Programme (FP6)-AEROSPACE involved Ukrainian organisations). Consequently, the overall concept of AERO-UKRAINE was to facilitate research co-operation between aeronautics actors from the European Union (EU) and Ukraine. The project has achieved its overall aim via a range of activities:

1. Assessing and publicising the aeronautics collaboration potential between the European Union (EU) and Ukraine. This involved mapping the Ukrainian aeronautics actors; reporting on opportunities for Ukrainian aeronautics actors in the EU; and production of a 'White Paper on aeronautics Research and development (R&D) in the Ukraine'.
2. Raising awareness and understanding of EU aeronautics collaborative research. On the one side, this involved organising FP7 aeronautics events in Ukraine that combine awareness-raising, training and networking with EU aeronautics actors. On the other side, it involved Ukrainian aeronautics actors presenting their aeronautics research at aeronautics networking and partnership events in the EU.
3. Supporting participation in the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) aeronautics research. This involved preparing for the establishment of an FP7 aeronautics National contact point (NCP) in Ukraine and providing support to Ukrainian aeronautics organisations by identifying and contacting EU aeronautics research organisations in order to join consortia preparing FP7 research proposals.

Project context and objectives:

The overall objective of AERO-UKRAINE was to facilitate research co-operation between aeronautics actors from the EU and Ukraine. The project achieved its overall objective via three groups of activities:

1. Assessing and publicising the aeronautics collaboration potential between the EU and Ukraine

Consortium has created a short brochure describing the possibilities of the involvement into the FP7 projects and providing some practical information through examples. The brochure is available in electronic format in English, Ukrainian and Russian languages.

With the help of Ukrainian consortium partners the consortium has conducted a research to identify 50+ strongest aviation companies in aeronautical Research and technology (R&T) Ukrainian organisations and comprised and printed out for dissemination a brochure based on that. The brochure provides information on main research fields of the Ukrainian organisations and their contact details. The brochure is in English and available in electronic format too. Furthermore a 'Ukrainian aeronautics Research and development (R&D) report 2010' was created to describe the Ukrainian aeronautics sector and makes recommendations for future research cooperation.

2. Organising combined awareness-raising, training and networking events about FP7 aeronautics collaborative research opportunities

The AERO-UKRAINE project has organised three awareness raising events in Ukraine. The aim of the events was to provide information for Ukrainian participants on FP7 in general and from the practical point of view. Therefore amongst the invited presenters were representatives of EC, ACARE; major R&T organisations like AIRBUS, DLR and many more. Besides being a valuable source of information those events provided a good networking opportunity both for the Ukrainian and EU participants.

The consortium partners had the opportunity to visit major EU events like info day in Brussels or aerodays in Madrid to get acquainted with the upcoming calls, to present their organisation capabilities, propose new project ideas and networking. As a result of these activities all Ukrainian partners received invitation to participate as consortium partner to several new projects.

An effort was made to help establishing the Ukrainian aeronautical NCP. After a long administrative period our efforts paid out and KhAI was appointed as Ukrainian transport NCP which includes aeronautical NCP.

Furthermore the Ukrainian partners were introduced to representatives of organisation like ETNA, EASN and Pegasus. Some of their project ideas were introduced through EASN inducing new project proposals.

For some of the consortium partners the project organised a few more focused events. One of such events was the meeting organised at AIRBUS's facilities in Toulouse, France. From the Ukrainian side Antonov and UKrNIAT have participated on the event. The event was successful resulting that both Ukrainian participants were invited to participate in project led by AIRBUS.

Project results:

The AERO-UKRAINE project was a support action project; therefore it had very limited opportunity to bring direct research results. However, indirectly it provided a considerable impact. The Ukrainian participants (more than 250 representatives from various Ukrainian aeronautical R&T organisations) of the three workshops held in Ukraine were acquainted with ACARE, FP7 and networks like EASN. By the end of the project one of the consortium partners was appointed to perform activities of the Ukrainian transport NCP including aeronautics.

On the other hand the Ukrainian consortium members had several opportunities to present their capabilities and project ideas on the major EU events like transport info day in Brussels or aerodays in Madrid.

KhAI and IPMS-NASU were supported by Intelligentsia to prepare proposals for the FP7 'Capacities' INCO ERA-WIDE call (deadline was in March 2011). KhAI's proposal entitled 'Integrating the National Aerospace University (KhAI) into ERA' obtained 14 / 15 and is currently in contract negotiation. The project will focus on aerospace research capacity building with several European partners. IPMS-NASU's proposal entitled 'Reinforcing cooperation between IPMS-NASU, the Ukrainian Materials Research Society and the European Research Area (ERA)' obtained 12.5 / 15.

AIRBUS has also proposed as the leader of the project the possible involvement of Antonov and UKrNIAT in the SARISTU project.

As a result of the discussion four Work package (WP)s of the SARISTU project were identified as the point of entry for the Ukrainian partners:

- WP2: Integrated sensing, UKrNIAT.
- WP3: Multifunctional materials, UKrNIAT.
- WP4: Integrated actuation, Antonov.
- WP5: Technology integration, Antonov.

During the EASN campaign for the endorsement of academia lead projects for the fifth FP7 call, a number of project ideas (about 10) were received from Ukrainian institutes. From these, a project by Prof. Igor Rybalchenko entitled 'Composite aircraft active lighting strike protection system' (ALSYS) has been retained and included in the list of EASN endorsed projects. Through the process within EASN, contacts from the University of Salerno, CIDETEC (Spain) and Euromart companies have been established and the proposal is currently under preparation.

Potential impact:

The AERO-UKRAINE project created impacts on many different levels: policy, socioeconomic, technological, national, European and international levels.

The AERO-UKRAINE support action created policy impacts by helping to address several EU policy objectives relating to Ukraine (and neighbouring EECA countries).

Also, AERO-UKRAINE addressed several articles in the EU / Ukraine European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) action plan: 'Article 63: Prepare Ukraine's integration into ERA'; 'Article 65: Promote Ukraine's integration in high-level scientific exchanges'; and 'Article 14: ... consultations on the possible EU use of Ukraine's long haul air transport capacities'. For this last article, it should be noted that the AERO-UKRAINE consortium included Antonov ASTC, the key Ukrainian organisation for long haul, super-cargo planes.

In the context of the EU / Ukraine ENP (ENP), EC proposed on 27 September 2005 negotiations on a comprehensive aviation agreement to create a common aviation area (see IP / 05 / 1190). Such negotiations will aim to progressively integrate the Ukrainian aviation sector into European structures, with two objectives: opening the markets in order to increase market opportunities for the industry and consumers, and ensure regulatory convergence and cooperation in fields, such as aviation safety, aviation security, environmental protection, competition rules and industrial cooperation. AERO-UKRAINE's activities concerning EU-Ukraine research cooperation can be considered to be a step towards implementing these objectives.

AERO-UKRAINE also helped to create policy impacts through its assessment of the aeronautics collaboration potential between the EU and Ukraine. The consortium produced a 'Ukrainian aeronautics R&D report 2010' that describes the main Ukrainian aeronautics actors, includes Political, economic, social and technological (PEST) and Strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analyses of the aeronautics sector, compares the Ukrainian government's aeronautics research priorities with those of EC, and makes recommendations for future research cooperation. Importantly, the AERO-UKRAINE consortium had good links to the EC's coordination and support action 'Enhancing the bilateral Science and technology (S&T) partnership with Ukraine (BILAT-UKR)' - managed by CNRS - so the white paper helps to influence future EU-Ukraine S&T policy cooperation. Similarly, the AERO-UKRAINE consortium had good links to the EC's IncoNet S&T policy dialogue platform targeting the EECA (IncoNet EECA) - managed by ICBSS and involving DLR - and so the report helped to create further policy impacts.

The AERO-UKRAINE project changed the level of participation of Ukrainian aeronautical organisations in EU research projects by facilitating research cooperation between aeronautics actors from the EU and Ukraine. It was identified that the best way to create this high impact in this respect, a range of activities needs to be organised: AERO-UKRAINE project organised FP7 aeronautics events in Kharkiv, Zaporizhzhya and Kiev in Ukraine. The events combined three activities:

1. awareness-raising about FP7 aeronautics research opportunities;
2. training on how to participate in FP7 collaborative research projects; and
3. networking with EU aeronautics research organisations. The project brought members of the AERO-UKRAINE advisory board to the events, many of who have expertise in flight physics, propulsion technologies, application of advanced materials and avionics technologies.

1. Assessed and publicised the aeronautics collaboration potential between the EU and Ukraine. This involved mapping the Ukrainian aeronautics actors; reporting on opportunities for Ukrainian aeronautics actors in the EU; and production of a 'Ukrainian aeronautics R&D report 2010'.
2. Raise awareness and understanding of EU aeronautics collaborative research. On the one side, this involved organising FP7 aeronautics events in Ukraine that combine awareness-raising, training and networking with EU aeronautics actors. On the other side, it involved Ukrainian aeronautics actors presenting their aeronautics research at aeronautics networking and partnership events in the EU.
3. Support participation in FP7 aeronautics research. This involved preparing for the establishment of an FP7 aeronautics NCP in Ukraine and providing support to Ukrainian aeronautics organisations by identifying and contacting EU aeronautics research organisations in order to join consortia preparing FP7 research proposals.

Support to Ukrainian aeronautics actors to join consortia preparing FP7 research proposals was realised by several way throughout the project. First of all a very important training course is worth to mention, which was prepared by Mr Giles Brandon from Intelligentsia Consultants. The two sessions were presented at the Kiev workshop of the project. At the second CEARES workshop held in Zilina (Slovakia) on 18-19 May 2009 Mr Igor Rybalchenko (KhAI) held a presentation about the potentials of the Ukrainian aeronautical entities and raised several project ideas for the audience.

The ETNA brokerage event was another major possibility for the interested parties to get closer to the EC's funds by finding appropriate project partners amongst the numerous registered participants. The event gave a special focus on central and eastern Europe as Ukrainian partners gave three presentations and Roland Guraly, CEARES Project coordinator and co-chairman of the AERO-UKRAINE project management team member chaired the networking session.

The AeroPortal, Small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) focused workshop was organised on 15 October 2009, where institutes could send profile forms which were circulated at the event and also in an electronic format on the project's website. Mr Igor Rybalchenko took the opportunity and sent four project ideas. A clear result of the project is that the rate of Ukrainian participation in proposals under FP7 has increased compared to FP6. COMP-AIR, SASHA, WASIS and DISTEC are some examples where Ukrainians participated fully or partly by the help of the AERO-UKRAINE project and theoretically all the Ukrainian participants could gain useful information via the workshop, the website or from consortium members.

In particular, we would like to draw attention to the following successful FP7 proposals that the AERO-UKRAINE project enabled Ukrainian participation:

- FP7 WASIS ('Composite fuselage section wafer design approach for safety increasing in worst case situations and joints minimising'). KhAI participated at FP7 Aeronautics and air transport (AAT) call 2010 info day Brussels (Sept 2009), presented the original proposal idea, identified coordinator and consortium partners for the successful Level 1 proposal.
- FP7 'Efficient systems and propulsion for small aircraft' (ESPOSA). SE Ivchenko-Progress and Motor-Sich met with Czech partners during FP7 AERO-UKRAINE events. Submitted successful level 2 proposal to FP7 AAT call 2011. Currently in contract negotiations.
- FP7 KhAI-ERA ('Integrating National Aerospace University 'KhAI' into ERA'). KhAI discussed proposal with consortium partners during FP7 AERO-UKRAINE events. Submitted successful proposal to FP7 INCO call 2011. Currently in contract negotiations. The meeting between the AIRBUS, Antonov and UkrNIAT initiated and organised by AIRBUS in Toulouse, France on 26 May 2010 also added to the positive effects of the project as both Antonov and UkrNIAT have been invited to participate in EU-funded projects.

The consortium partners also have participated on the FP7 information days for transport and brokerage event organised on 22-23 July 2010, Brussels. They delivered presentations and participated in networking activities.

All Ukrainian consortium partners have participated on the aerodays 2011 event held in Madrid, Spain on 30 March - 1 April 2011. Mr Rybalchenko has delivered a presentation on parallel session 3 on 31 March 2011. The presentation introduced the AERO-UKRAINE project, its consortium members and their capabilities and provided an overview of the Ukrainian R&D situation. Before the session the dissemination of the AERO-UKRAINE project's brochure and leaflet took place.

The AERO-UKRAINE web-portal has been created and maintained, in order to raise the visibility of research co-operation potential between aeronautics actors from the EU and Ukraine.

The web-portal has pages in English, Russian and Ukrainian. It is updated regularly with relevant aeronautics R&D news, events, and based on the web-portal four newsletters have been issued. Each newsletter was delivered to over eight hundred recipients.

Furthermore, through the web portal the following electronic materials were made available for download:

- EU cooperation brochure in English, Ukrainian and Russian;
- the presentations of the first workshop in Kiev (29 pieces);
- then presentations of the second workshop in Zaporozhe (16 pieces);
- the presentations of the third workshop in Kharkov (19 pieces);
- partner search letter of a Belarus scientist;
- invitation and registration forms to Kiev workshop;
- invitation and registration form to Zaporozhe workshop;
- invitation and registration form to Kharkov workshop;
- the Agenda of Kiev workshop;
- the agenda of Zaporozhe workshop;
- the agenda of Kharkov workshop;
- the list of participants of the Kiev workshop;
- the list of participants of the Zaporozhe workshop;
- the list of participants of the Kharkov workshop;
- the organisation profile form.

Besides that, the web-portal contains information regarding the AERO-UKRAINE project itself by describing the project goals and activities in detail. There is also a list of all consortium members and their contact points and the list of advisor board members. Page 'Upcoming events' announces the upcoming events locations and dates. In the 'News' section all the project relevant events were described. This page is constantly updated as needed.

The 'Links' page contains useful for Ukrainian organisations links related to the FP7 participation.

In order to promote a significant event of European aviation community among Ukrainian aeronautical actors (task 4.3) the banner of the aerodays 2011 event was included on the main page.

The 'Ukrainian aeronautics R&T report? 2010' is available for download in electronic format. The report accomplishes one of the objectives of the project namely to help EU aeronautics organisations (private and public) to understand better the overall Ukrainian aeronautics sector and recommend how Ukraine and EU can cooperate in aeronautics R&D.

The first Ukrainian workshop took place in Kiev hosted by IPMS-NASU, on 28-29 October 2009. This location provided the initial publicity to the project.

Amongst the one hundred participants Mr Liam Breslin, Head of unit aeronautics, Directorate-general (DG) research and Mr Pablo Perez-Illana, project officer were present as well as the members of the advisory board and the consortium. The event also gave a possibility to the above-mentioned EC delegation and Mr Dominique Ollinger, Airbus representative to have a site visit at one of ANTONOV's facilities.

The second Ukrainian workshop was hosted by Ivchenko-Progress and took place in Zaporozhe in premises of Ivchenko-Progress. This allowed the participants to take a tour of the Ivchenko-Progress facilities including the research laboratories and testing facilities.

Beside the Ivchenko-Progress we had a full participation of Zaporozhe Motor Sich Public Joint Stock Company. The company is manufacturing engines for airplanes and helicopters as well as industrial gas turbine installations and closely related to the Ivchenko-Progress as the manufactured engines are designed by Ivchenko-Progress.

The event was also attended by the representatives of the local press both written and television news. Mr Rainer Scharenberg and Andrej Kocsis gave a short interview regarding the goals of the project explaining importance of the cooperation between the European aeronautical R&T organisations and the Ukrainian organisations working in the same field.

The third Ukrainian workshop was hosted by KhAI and took place in Kharkov in the premises of KhAI. The event had 65 registered participants mainly representatives of the Ukrainian aeronautical educational and R&D institutions. During the two main sessions 19 presentations were delivered. First session's presentations provided information regarding the ACARE, FP7, AERO-UKRAINE project in general. Second session's presentations were more about the capabilities and new ideas of Ukrainian organisations.

The presentations delivered during the event are available for download from the project's web site: www.AERO-UKRAINE.eu.

The non-Ukrainian participants had an opportunity to visit some of the R&T facilities of the KhAI. It was interesting to see how close the education can get to the real R&T activities. In some laboratories we could see students working together with their professors on real life design fulfilling the educational purposes and getting acquainted with the latest technology and requirements of a real work task. In other laboratories we could observe how the educational process is supported by the equipment built for an actual project.

The FP7 third call info day was organised in Brussels on 28-29 September 2009. The info day can be evaluated as very useful for the participating Ukrainian partners. They could gather a great amount of information about the FP call and evaluation mechanisms, about proposals under preparation and could present their ideas.

The info day was followed by the ETNA brokerage event where the Ukrainian delegation had also the possibility to participate and to share their project ideas, make presentations and to find potential project partners.

The KhAI represented by Mr Igor Rybalchenko took part in several other FP7 related events and delivered presentations introducing the AERO-UKRAINE project and the capabilities of the Ukrainian partners.

First such event was the CEARES workshop held in Zilina 18-19 May 2009. As part of this task Mr Igor Rybalchenko from KhAI took part in the ACARE-EASN workshop on the 25 February 2010 and expressed his willingness to join the Pegasus Academic Network as an associated member. This was followed by participation at AAT workshop - July 2010, Zagreb, Croatia.

There was a bilateral meeting organised between the Antonov and the Airbus. The meeting took place at Toulouse, France on 25-26 May 2010. The Antonov was represented by Mr Oleg Bogdanov Deputy General Designer and he was accompanied by Mr Viktor Shulepov, Director of International Cooperations UkrNIAT.

During the meeting representatives of the Airbus were providing insight into their practice of FP7 participation and experience while the goal of the meeting was to explore possible cooperation opportunities in the European AAT FP.

The Ukrainian partners were also presenting their experience, capabilities and current activities.

During the meeting it was established that there are two projects SRISTU and NMS where the participation of Ukrainian partners is possible. The work packages allowing cooperation were also identified:

- WP2: Integrated sensing, UkrNIAT.
- WP3: Multi-functional materials UkrNIAT.
- WP4: Integrated actuation Antonov.
- WP5: Technology integration Antonov.
- It was decided that all Ukrainian consortium partners should participate on the Aero Days 2011 event held in Madrid, Spain on 30 March - 1 April 2011. As KhAI is to act as the Aeronautical NCP of Ukraine and the time for presentation on the event was limited Mr. Rybalchenko had the honour to deliver a presentation on parallel session 3 on 31 March 2011. The presentation introduced the AERO-UKRAINE project, its consortium members and their capabilities and provided an overview of the Ukrainian R&T situation. Before the session the dissemination of the AERO-UKRAINE project's brochure and leaflet has been done.

List of websites: www.AERO-UKRAINE.eu