The European "Clean Sky" initiative is one major step closer to reality following the signature of a memorandum of understanding in Vienna by Airbus and eight other leading aeronautics companies. This effort is aimed at further reducing the impact of air transportation on the environment through new solutions to reduce noise, lower emissions and cut fuel consumption for airliners of the future.
Airbus is one of nine leading European aeronautics companies that have signed a memorandum of understanding to establish the aeronautics Joint Technology Initiative (JTI) called 'Clean Sky' at the annual meeting of the Aerospace and Defence Industries Association of Europe (ASD) in Vienna.
The Clean Sky initiative is a European technological research programme that aims to radically improve the impact of air transport on the environment through new technologies and solutions to reduce noise, emissions and fuel consumption for future aircraft. The project is closely linked to the Advisory Council for Aeronautical Research in Europe's (ACARE) objectives for the industry, called Vision 2020.
ACARE goals, to be met by 2020, include a 50 per cent reduction of CO2 emissions through drastic reduction of fuel consumption, an 80 per cent reduction of NOx emissions and a 50 per cent reduction of perceived noise. It also aims for green product life cycle design including manufacturing, maintenance and disposal.
With an estimated total budget of 1.7 billion euros, Clean Sky will be the largest and most ambitious European aeronautics project ever. Participating companies will co-operate in public-private partnerships with the European Commission, to stimulate groundbreaking research across businesses, universities and research centres, as European Science Commissioner Janez Potocnik explained.
"By working together, we can identify and overcome obstacles to the implementation of this technology in all its very many applications," he said. "We can tackle technology bottlenecks, raise public awareness and appreciation, address issues such as safety and develop standards that ensure technology developed in Europe is used not just here, but around the world."
Along with Airbus, Agusta Westland, Alenia Aeronautica, Dassault Aviation, Eurocopter, Liebherr Aerospace, Rolls-Royce, SAFRAN (est-ce que SAFRAN s'Ã©crit uniquement en majuscules? Sinon, le mettre au meme niveau que les autres en minuscule) and Thales are all signatories to the memorandum and confirmation of the initiative is expected early next year.