Seven New Industry Leaders Contribute to Ambitious FCAS Programme
Seven new industry leaders have partnered with Team TEMPEST to deliver cutting-edge technologies for a new generation of combat air, according to a UK MoD statement on 20 July.
Companies signing partnership agreements with the team – created in 2018 to work in collaboration with MoD on the UK’s Future Combat Air System (FCAS), include: GEUK, GKN, Collins Aerospace, Martin Baker, QinetiQ, Bombardier and Thales UK, alongside several British universities and SMEs.
FCAS is a £1.9 billion (€2.1 billion) programme aimed at developing the next generation of combat aircraft, dubbed TEMPEST, to replace TYPHOON. The new companies bring fresh innovation and designs, enabling Team TEMPEST to carry on developing ground-breaking concepts and technologies that will guarantee combat dominance in the air. The alliance is quickly gaining recognition for its work and notched up a world first within two years of launching by designing a generator that delivers unprecedented levels of electrical power.
Defence Secretary Ben Wallace confirmed seven new companies had signed agreements to collaborate on Team TEMPEST at the virtual 2020 Farnborough International Airshow (FIA Connect). “These pioneers will strengthen our ability to develop a next-generation aircraft and allow us to continue making vital contributions to UK, European and global security,” he stated.
“We are seeking opportunities to widen the Team TEMPEST project and bring in the very best of UK capability and expertise, from both inside and outside of defence. They will work alongside us as we seek to develop the generation-defining combat air capability which will help safeguard the security of our nation and our allies to the end of this century […] In addition, by developing the wider industry team, we will help contribute to the retention, growth and investment in a wider world-class UK skills base. Collaborations, with some of the brightest and best across the country, show that Tempest is becoming a truly national endeavour and we are delivering on our promise to take new approaches to drive significant pace and efficiency into the programme,” explained Dave Holmes, Manufacturing Director for BAE Systems’ Air.
Already employing over 1,800 highly-skilled engineers and programmers – a number set to increase to 2,500 by next year – the programme is securing the UK’s position as a global leader in combat air. The new members will join forces on established projects and development work with core members BAE Systems, Leonardo UK, MBDA UK, Rolls-Royce and the MoD, bringing the best of British expertise and ingenuity in design, manufacture and operation of combat air systems.
Together the companies will develop more than 60 technology prototypes and demonstration activities. New processes will also deliver technology and intellectual property in half the time and at significantly lower cost than previous complex combat air programmes.