More than half of Airbus’ annual single-aisle aircraft output comes from Hamburg-Finkenwerder.
Airbus’ site in Donauwörth is the world’s second-largest helicopter plant.
Airbus employees in Ottobrunn/Taufkirchen, near Munich, produce solar panels for satellites, as well as design, develop and manufacture rocket engines and thrust chambers for the Ariane 5 commercial launch vehicle. The Near Infrared Spectrograph – an instrument capable of detecting the faintest radiation from distant galaxies – is a product of Ottobrunn/Taufkirchen for use on the U.S. James Webb Space Telescope.
Bremen is a centre of competence for space transportation, manned space flight and space robotics. Its highly-skilled employees work on key programmes such as the Ariane 5 commercial launcher and the Orion Multi-Purpose Crew Vehicle – a joint project between the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the European Space Agency (ESA). Bremen also is responsible for operation of European components on the International Space Station.
Airbus engineers in Friedrichshafen are currently developing the second generation of MetOp weather satellites, which will be launched from 2021. The multispectral satellites for the Sentinel-2 mission, the oceanographic satellites for Sentinel-6 and the radar instrument for Sentinel-1 are being built here for the European Union's Copernicus Earth observation programme. With its involvement in the joint European-Japanese BepiColombo mission to Mercury, which launches in 2018, the site is at the leading edge of space exploration. The portfolio of space-related projects in Friedrichshafen also includes products and services for space-based reconnaissance, such as the marketing of radar images from the TerraSAR-X and TanDEM-X satellites as well as their successors. Work is also focused on experimental facilities for research under zero-gravity conditions for the International Space Station ISS.
Through partnerships with organisations like Femtec, which promotes engineering and science among female students in Germany, Airbus is encouraging students to pursue high-tech careers by inviting them to participate in technological projects within the company.
Airbus is one of the world’s biggest drivers of innovation. In 2017, it invested €2.8 billion in self-financed research and development – placing it among Germany’s 10 most research-oriented companies.
With Airbus holding some 11,000 patent families and approximately 37,000 individual patents, environmentally-friendly technologies play a key role in the company's research, with the extraction of biofuels from algae being one of the main focal points in Germany.
Furthermore Airbus, together with the European Innovation Partnership on Smart Cities and Communities (EIP-SCC) and the city council of Ingolstadt have selected Ingolstadt as a pilot city for demonstrating various forms of digital mobility. On 20 June 2018, a Manifesto of Intent has been signed by Airbus and further partners such as the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), Audi, the Munich Airport and the Technical University of Ingolstadt.
Airbus is one of Germany’s 10 most research-oriented companies.
Airbus is committed to promoting young scientific talent. In 2012, the company launched a project at the Ludwig Bölkow Campus in Ottobrunn/Taufkirchen to enable science and industry to combine their strengths in joint research projects and promote the creation of start-up businesses.
In addition to research on such current issues as ‘green aerospace,’ students have the opportunity to pursue degrees, and a start-up centre at the campus ensures rapid knowledge transfer between the academic world and industry.
Apprenticeships in Germany, where dual education has a long tradition, have become an essential pillar for Airbus. The Duales Studium is such a programme, where students combine formal education with a more practical and specialised approach in a company for a period of three to five years.
With commercial jetliner and space activities in the northern part of the country, military aircraft work being performed in the south and helicopter operations in the centre, Airbus in Germany is optimally positioned for the future of aviation. Technology teams across the country are focussing on forward-looking concepts – such as unmanned and individualised air transport – that will fundamentally change the flying experience.
Since the company’s foundation, the number of people employed at Airbus in Germany has risen; and as growth rates in the industry indicate, this success story is destined to continue for years to come.
A founding nation of Airbus, Germany will continue to be a key pillar for the success of the company around the world.