Airbus UpNext focuses on flying future technologies at speeds well beyond what seems feasible today. In doing so, it is actively shaping the future of the aerospace industry.



Airbus UpNext uses demonstrators as the principal means of evaluating, maturing and validating new products and services that encompass radical technological breakthroughs.


Its mission is:

  • To identify the trends that could disrupt the future of the aerospace industry and evaluate them to demonstrate their potential as a viable product,
  • To accelerate traditional research cycles and prototype development to achieve proof of concept in a real environment and at a convincing scale and speed,
  • To develop real-world applications for emerging aerospace technologies, thereby driving their maturity and increasing their value. 

Current projects

Cryogenics and superconductivity for aircraft, explained

This three-year demonstrator project focuses on testing cryogenic and superconducting technologies to significantly boost the performance of electric- and hybrid-electric propulsion systems in future zero-emission aircraft.

fello'fly Transatlantic Flight Test November 2021

This flight demonstrator project proves the technical, operational and economic viability of wake-energy retrieval for commercial aircraft. This concept of operations could make a significant impact on aircraft’s environmental performance, with at least a 5% reduction in CO2 emissions per trip.

Airbus UpNext TELEO

This programme aims to provide seamless smart routing in satellite constellations (LEO and GEO). Airbus UpNext TELEO will also boost ground-to-space communication data rates thanks to ultra-high-throughput optical links.


Through this project, autonomous features are introduced to the helicopters Flightlab. These technologies aim to simplify mission preparation and management, reduce helicopter pilot workload, and further increase safety.


Past achievements


The Autonomous Taxi, Take-off and Landing (ATTOL) project leveraged computer-vision technologies and techniques to successfully complete fully autonomous tests (taxi, take off, approach and landing) using a commercial aircraft.

E-Fan X
E-Fan X

E-Fan X is a major milestone on Airbus' decarbonisation journey. This first-of-its-kind demonstrator has provided invaluable learnings on serial hybrid-electric propulsion.

Reliable Connected Fleet

This programme developed connectivity architecture by combining dependable and secure communications with superior service quality.

Latest news

A350 test aircraft fello fly transatlantic flight
Airbus and its partners demonstrate how sharing the skies can save airlines fuel and reduce CO2 emissions
Airbus has performed the first long-haul demonstration of formation flight in general air traffic (GAT) regulated transatlantic airspace with two A350 aircraft flying at three kilometers apart from Toulouse, France to Montreal, Canada. The aircraft were greeted at Montreal-Trudeau International Airport. Over 6 tons of CO2 emissions were saved on the trip, confirming the potential for more than a 5% fuel saving on long-haul flights.
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Commercial Aircraft
Airbus evolves its innovation landscape with Airbus Scale
Airbus has launched Airbus Scale, a new innovation unit that brings together corporate innovation, startup engagement and company building activities.
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Airbus to test advanced autonomous features on helicopter Flightlab
Airbus is introducing autonomous features to its helicopter Flightlab through a project code-named Vertex.
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