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12 June 2009
12. June 2009 Commercial Aircraft

Airbus formally signs into SESAR multi-partner agreement


Agreement marks actual start of SESAR programme, Airbus full member of the Private-Public Partnership

Airbus has become a full member of the SESAR Joint Undertaking (SJU), a unique Private-Public Partnership to modernise Air Traffic Management (ATM). An agreement with the 16 partners and the SJU was finalised today, marking the actual start of the execution of the SESAR Programme. The agreement establishes Airbus as a full member of this powerful partnership. Efficient ATM is a key strategic driver for Airbus.

SESAR (Single European Sky ATM Research) will develop and deliver the necessary operational and technical standards (specifications, procedures, prototypes, validation activities, etc) for the progressive deployment of the new European ATM system. The total funding for the SESAR programme initially amounts to ?1.9 billion over a period of seven years.

Patrick Gavin, Executive Vice-President, Head of Airbus Engineering explains: "ATM is a limiting factor to the growth of air transport. The way air transport operations are presently conducted and the current systems will not allow the sustainable growth of air transport." He adds: "Future systems will integrate the aircraft as an essential element of the collaborative operations. Modern ATM is also key in enhancing the eco-efficiency of aviation."

The SESAR Programme comprises 16 work packages and 295 projects to be undertaken in the 2009-2016 timeframe under the supervision of the SJU. Airbus will be a major contributor to all operational work packages and act as the leader of the aircraft work package. As 'aircraft integrator', Airbus will define and develop future onboard ATM operations and capabilities. Global interoperability is a key factor for a successful implementation of the future ATM systems, and Airbus will actively support the SESAR work programme activities in this direction.

In terms of figures, the programme has set itself the long-term target - beyond 2020 - of tripling air traffic capacity, halving costs for airlines, increasing safety ten-fold and reducing the environmental impact of every aircraft by 10 percent.

Airbus is committed to mobilise considerable resources and play a key role in the SESAR Joint Undertaking in defining and developing the ATM capabilities that are necessary onboard the aircraft to reach the expected changes of the ATM system by 2020 in all key performance areas.

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