Grazia Vittadini

Chief Technology Officer - Airbus


Julie Kitcher

Executive Vice President Communications and Corporate Affairs - Airbus

Dirk Hoke

Chief Executive Officer - Airbus Defence and Space

Dominik Asam

Chief Financial Officer - Airbus

Andreas Hammer

Andreas Hammer has been the head of the Spacecraft Equipment division at Airbus Defence and Space since 1 January 2019, in addition to his role as German Space Coordinator held since September 2018.

Prior to his current position, he was CEO of Tesat Spacecom GmbH & Co. KG from 2015 to 2018, a subsidiary company of Airbus, and Corporate Secretary of Airbus Defence and Space for two years beforehand.

He started his career at Airbus (previously EADS Defence & Security) in 2005 where he held numerous executive positions until the 2014 name change and beyond, including Head of the Key Account NATO/EU in Brussels, Sales Director Germany and Chief of Staff/Head of Central Departments in Munich.

Andreas Hammer holds a degree in aerospace engineering from the University of the German Armed Forces in Munich. He has been a member on the board of trustees of the Dornier Foundation for Aerospace since 2014, a member on the steering committee of the German Association for Defence Technology (DWT) since 2013, and on the steering committee of the German Aerospace Industries Association (BDLI) since 2018.


Andreas Hammer - Head of Spacecraft Equipment, Airbus

Grazia Vittadini

Grazia Vittadini has been appointed Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Airbus and a member of the Airbus Executive Committee, effective 1 May 2018.

Furthermore, she serves as Director of the Airbus Foundation Board and as a member of the Inclusion and Diversity Steering Committee.

Previously, Vittadini was Executive Vice President Head of Engineering since January 2017 and a member of the Executive Committee of Airbus Defence and Space. Prior to this position, she had been Senior Vice President Head of Corporate Audit & Forensic, responsible for Airbus Group audit activities worldwide.

Since January 2013 and for one year and a half, Grazia was Vice President Head of Airframe Design and Technical Authority for all Airbus aircraft in Hamburg.

Grazia Vittadini graduated in Aeronautical Engineering and she specialized in Aerodynamics from the Politecnico di Milano.


Grazia Vittadini - Chief Technology Officier, Airbus

Bertrand Piccards vision of clean aviation

Guest article

Ever since the Wright brothers took off for the first powered flight in 1903, aviation has been driving our imagination and innovative strength. And it's set to continue to do so in the future. But in what areas? Flying is already fast and safe; now it needs to be made even cleaner.

That’s exactly what I wanted to demonstrate with Solar Impulse: that long-haul powered flights are possible without a single drop of fuel. Will we soon see fully solar-powered aircraft carrying 300 passengers across the oceans? To answer yes would be crazy. To answer no would be stupid. The required technology doesn’t exist yet. But the same was true for Lindbergh when he was faced with the first transatlantic flight. We must realise that limits only exist in our head! And even before people travel in fuel-free aircraft, we can make aircraft and airports cleaner:

Bertrand Piccard

Bertrand Piccard ist der Initiator und Visionär hinter Solar Impulse, dem ersten Flugzeug, das dauerhaft ohne Treibstoff fliegen kann. Im Jahr 2016 gelang es Piccard, der sich mit André Borschberg im Cockpit des einsitzigen Solarflugzeugs abwechselte, nur mit Sonnenkraft getrieben einmal die Welt zu umrunden. Mit dieser Pioniertat wollte er für die Nutzung von erneuerbaren Energien werben. Im nächsten Schritt plant Piccard unter anderem die Gründung der World Alliance for Efficient Solutions. 

Storage capacity and energy efficiency

If you think about the fact that one kilogram of jet fuel produces 36 times as much power as a one kilogram lithium-ion battery, a change appears unrealistic. But in comparison to combustion engines, electric engines are two to three times more efficient and significantly lighter. In light of that, the switch appears a lot more feasible. I bet that in less than 10 years, all-electric aircraft will be flying short and medium-haul routes, landing quietly at city airports with up to 50 passengers on-board. There are also concepts for electric tow trucks capable of bringing aircraft onto the runway without fuel. In parallel, we need to be carrying out research into hydrogen-powered aircraft, hybrid solutions and biofuels.

Storage capacity and energy efficiency


Clean technologies have the potential to give new momentum to the entire aviation industry. Take Fort Worth Airport for example: last year, it became the first airport in the US and the 23rd worldwide to achieve carbon-neutral status. This has resulted not only in increased profits, but also a 38 percent saving in energy costs – despite passenger numbers having increased by 15 percent since 2010.

Legal framework conditions

For our round-the-world flight, the legal challenges were often just as high as the technical ones – with regard to overflight permissions for instance. Regulations must keep pace with the development of aviation. To save flying time and fuel, we need to prioritise direct flight paths. Likewise for continuous descent approach procedures, which can save a tonne of fuel for every large aircraft which lands.

For decades, Germany has been known for its innovative strength and strong industry. Probably more so than any other country, it is pre-destined to conquer the ambitious transition to a climate-friendly economy. Success will depend on the pioneering spirit of governments and major corporations.

Status: March 2017

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