Industry Minister celebrates ATI milestone and green-tech funding

2 months ago
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Industry Minister Alan Mak will celebrate a multibillion-pound funding milestone for cutting-edge green technology in the UK aerospace sector today.

The Minister will join UK aerospace industry leaders at an event to mark the 10-year anniversary of the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), a joint government-industry funded organisation that drives world-class research in sustainable aviation.

He will join Airbus, Rolls-Royce and a range of other leaders to celebrate the success of the ATI in making the UK a world leader in cleaner and greener air travel, with £3.6 billion of government and industry funding being allocated to more than 400 different aerospace R&D projects across the breadth of the UK over the past decade.

This funding has helped deliver the long-term change our country needs to deliver a brighter future for Britain and improve economic security and opportunity for everyone.

These projects have pioneered new technologies which will help develop a new generation of zero-emission aircraft, supporting thousands of high-skilled jobs across the country.

Industry Minister Alan Mak said: “Our world-class aerospace sector is a British success story, with government and industry coming together to provide billions of pounds in unprecedented support to help us lead the way on cleaner, greener air travel.

“Over the last decade the ATI has been crucial to this, helping our aerospace industry soar to new heights and supporting thousands of jobs while continuing to grow our economy.”

Over a decade ago, government joined together with industry through the Aerospace Growth Partnership to create the ATI, responding to calls for the UK to develop its own R&D programme for the aerospace sector.

This has secured long-term planning and funding sources through the ATI Programme, with the £3.6 billion of joint government-industry funding for transformative technology projects in air transport so far.

Furthering the aviation research agenda through developing cleaner, greener air travel is a principal aim of the ATI. Successes include:

Aerospace funding is a key priority for the Government, with £200 million of joint government and industry funding dedicated to R&D projects announced in the recent Spring Budget, supporting the development of energy efficient and zero-carbon aircraft technology.

This came after the Government announced £975 million in funding over five years from 2025 for the ATI programme in the 2023 Autumn Statement.

Industry leaders and experts from across the sector have reacted to the ATI’s key milestone:

ATI CEO Gary Elliott said: “The ATI Programme has helped secure jobs, support growth, return economic value to the UK and position the UK to capture market share in next-generation sustainable aircraft.

“All of this has been made possible through collaboration – between the ATI, the many organisations across the UK who have delivered over 400 projects and, of course, our partners in the Department for Business and Trade and Innovate UK. Looking ahead to the next ten years, I am confident that the ATI will play a critical role in making the UK the world’s most vibrant ecosystem for Net Zero aerospace technology.”

The aerospace sector has dealt with multiple global challenges in the ten years the ATI has been in existence, such as supply-chain shocks, unprecedented increases in passenger numbers and global skills shortages.

The research and innovation inspired and brought into existence by the programme has helped the UK maintain its position as a world-leader in aerospace manufacturing and, as a result, cleaner, greener, global aviation.

Russ Dunn, chief technology officer, GKN Aerospace said: “The ATI represents the best of collaboration between industry and government and continues to demonstrate the UK’s ability to create the most innovative and impactful aerospace technology.

“Truly sustainable aerospace is both a huge technical challenge and a huge economic opportunity for the UK; we believe zero emissions flight for the commercial market is achievable and that the ATI is a core partner in delivering that future.”

Founder and CEO of ZeroAvia Val Miftakhov said: “The ATI’s impact in bringing zero-emission, hydrogen engines further up the industry agenda – directly via its funding of innovators like ourselves and through the seminal research of Fly Zero – is of huge importance to delivering a clean future for flight.”

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