By Professor Sam Turner, CTO at the High Value Manufacturing Catapult

Britain was the birthplace of the first industrial revolution, led the second (technological – industrial revolution), and was an early adopter of the third (automation driven – industrial revolution).

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The inaugural Aero Engine Forum has taken place in Birmingham, bringing a major international focus to the event that was held at the International Convention Centre. The conference was chaired by the Midlands Aerospace Alliance, hosting prominent engine makers and tier one companies, showcasing supply chain opportunities, and explaining what technologies and capabilities they need from their suppliers.

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By Ian Constance, Chief Executive Officer at the Advanced Propulsion Centre

The concept of flying cars has been around for a long time, although up until now it has been nothing more than a figment of the imagination – perhaps best characterised in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Ian Fleming’s children’s story of 1968, in which an inventor turns a broken-down car into an adventurous flying machine.

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The ATI and EPSRC are hosting a symposium to explore the findings of research into future disruptive technologies in aerospace, particularly those focused on hybrid-electric and electric aircraft. The event will share findings from four EPSRC-supported studies that have been scoping key issues towards future electric aircraft. Focused on themes identified by the ATI, the six-month studies covered structures, propulsion, systems, and environment & economics. The findings will be presented by the lead universities: University of Bristol, Cranfield University, Newcastle University and UCL.

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Last year the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) shared insights of its attendance at the Swedish Aerospace Technology Congress 2016 through a blog post highlighting the opportunities for collaborative projects between UK and Swedish partners.

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The ATI (last month) attended the 2017 SAE Aerospace Standards Summit (focusing on emerging technologies and the enabling role of standards) which brought together civil and military regulators, aerospace industry leaders and subject matter experts. the event provided a platform to discuss the role of standards to support the adoption of new and emerging technologies such as IoT and Digital Manufacturing, Novel Vertical Flight, Model Based Systems Engineering (MBSE), Cybersecurity, Wireless Networking and Nano Materials. Several topics presented at the event are key initiatives for the ATI, including, cybersecurity, digital transformation and the increasing complexity of MBSE and High Value Design which align with the Institute’s technology strategy Raising Ambition.

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The Departments for International Trade (DIT) and Business Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), together with Boeing, organised for a UK delegation (which included the Aerospace Technology Institute and up to 40 UK aerospace supply chain companies) to attend a two-day Boeing Technology Showcase in Seattle on 25th and 26th April.

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Natasha joined the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) in February this year to support the Executive Management team and manage the Institute’s central London office. As Executive Assistant, part of the Operations team, Natasha’s role is central to the efficient running of the business. Her highly organised manner and helpful nature enables Natasha to provide support across the ATI.

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By Alasdair Shannon, Head of CNI Cyber Solutions for Leonardo Security & Information Systems

The WannaCry ransomware attacks this month have raised public awareness on the disruptive effects of a major cyber-attack on our daily lives.  While the impacts are still being addressed by the NHS, there is well publicised evidence through the National Cyber Security Centre on the cyber risk exposure to the UK Critical National Infrastructure (CNI) which notably, has varying degrees of maturity in threat awareness and cyber protection across the CNI sectors.

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Shagufta joined the ATI in April 2016. As Communications Officer, she is responsible for the Institute’s social media activity (such as Twitter and LinkedIn), writing content for the web site and eNewsletter, coordinating the programme of writing and designing white papers and reports, and reaching out to journalists who cover aerospace.

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