Airbus Cyber Innovation celebrates today the opening of its Cyber Innovation Hub located in the Airbus facility in Newport, Wales. The Hub hosts leading cyber security research initiatives, incubators and accelerators, and academic research partnerships. Key areas of research include the protection of industrial control and safety critical systems, understanding the human factors of cyber security, and artificial intelligence and data analytics.
Airbus is a global leader in cyber innovation and research. The Cyber Innovation teams monitor and identify cyber trends in order to develop the technology required to tackle emerging security issues and protect Airbus’ portfolio of products, manufacturing processes and intellectual property from cyber threats.
At the Hub, state-of-the-art Research & Innovation programmes develop breakthrough technologies which are then transformed into prototypes and demonstrators by incubation projects. Accelerator programmes industrialise these solutions and run pilot projects across the wider business.
The Newport Hub helps promote Wales’ reputation for cyber excellence by developing cyber talent in the region and engaging with Welsh industry and academia.
An ambitious cyber security initiative jointly funded by the Welsh Government and Airbus called CyberLab is hosted at the Airbus Cyber Innovation Hub. The dedicated up to £8 million programme of activity and research in a laboratory environment develops fundamental cyber security research for key industrial requirements in advanced manufacturing organisations.
Partnerships with academia are key to Airbus Cyber Innovation’s goal of identifying and developing emerging research and technology.
The Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Analytics is a partnership with Cardiff University launched in 2017. A leading UK academic research unit for cyber security analytics, the team is developing new ways of protecting corporate IT networks, intellectual property and critical national infrastructure from cyber attacks.
Beyond this, close collaboration between Cardiff University and Airbus Cyber Innovation has been a great asset in driving innovation and skills development forward for Wales and the wider world.
The Centre of Excellence in Industrial Control System (ICS) Security is a longstanding partnership with De Montfort University’s Cyber Technology Institute (CTI). This initiative is focused on the research of tools, techniques and knowledge for the protection of Industrial Control Systems.
Attending the opening, Ken Skates AM, Minister for Economy and Transport, said: “I am delighted to be working in partnership with Airbus on this exciting and absolutely vital new facility. This Cyber Innovation Hub will give front line leadership in cyber security to companies and enterprises across Wales and indeed the UK for this and future generations. I view Cyber as a building block for every commercial enterprise in Wales. It is not only larger businesses that should be concerned about cyber security, it is every size of business across the entire Country who needs to take action now to safeguard our national infrastructure and strong supply chain.”
Dr Kevin Jones, Head of Airbus Cyber Innovation, said: “The launch of the Cyber Innovation Hub is further recognition of the strategic importance of the cybersecurity research and innovation programme for Airbus. It demonstrates the company’s commitment to cybersecurity and research into the protection of business and critical systems and recognises the value of the cyber security ecosystem in Wales. The flagship cyber innovation laboratory and CyberLab programme enables transformation of the cyber security horizon, and further enhances the “Cyber Wales” brand on a global scale.”
Katherine Bennett CBE, Airbus Senior Vice President for the UK, said “Airbus works very closely with our partners from academia and government right across our UK business manufacturing and designing aircraft, satellites and helicopters. The opening of our Cyber Innovation Hub is another fantastic example of how, working together, we can boost important research into this critical, fast-developing sector which helps to protect not only Airbus’ own products and systems but those of our customers around the world.”
* * *
About Airbus Cyber Innovation
Airbus Cyber Innovation monitors and identifies cyber trends in order to develop the technology required to tackle emerging cyber security issues. Through research initiatives and projects across the globe, the Airbus Cyber Innovation teams protect Airbus’ portfolio of products, manufacturing processes and intellectual property from cyber threats, and delivers world-class cyber security expertise. Activity takes place across five sites located in Wales, France and Germany.