Airbus Defence and Space and Dassault Aviation’s recently declared their readiness to jointly develop and produce Europe's Future Combat Air System (FCAS). The announcement was followed by a Declaration of Intent signed by the German and French defence ministers on 19 June 2018.
The system would complement and eventually replace the current generation of Eurofighter and Rafale fighter aircrafts between 2035 and 2040. FCAS will include a variety of elements working in concert, from a next generation fighter aircraft to Medium-Altitude Long-Endurance Unmanned Aerial Vehicles and even drones flying in clusters. This state-of-the-art European system will be able to connect and to be operated with mission aircrafts, satellites, NATO systems and other land and naval systems.
FCAS is the most important and ambitious European defence project yet and is set to pave the way in making Europe a leader in global defence while generating significant spill-over effects into many other sectors. As Europe’s most important industrial project for the coming decades, it is a unique opportunity for the continent.