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Sixth Framework Programme AERONAUTICS AND SPACE
(for more information visit the website)


The library contains an overview of Integrated Projects (IPs) and Networks of Excellence (NoEs) selected so far. The What's New? section features projects with new information such as links to websites, articles etc.

NB: The library does not yet include Information Society Technologies, or the parts of Aeronautics and Space, and Sustainable Surface Transport covered by the Energy and Transport DG.

Click a title below and then scroll down the page to see projects for that thematic priority.

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Life sciences, genomics and biotechnologies for health
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Global change and ecosystems
Citizens and governance in a knowledge-based society
European Atomic Energy Community - Euratom
WHAT'S NEW?  (1 of 1)
Project: Optimized Procedures and Techniques for IMprovement of Approach and Landing
Acronym:   OPTIMAL
What's new:   Website
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Title: Integration of technologies in support of a passenger and environmentally friendly helicopter.
Project summary:   Today's helicopters need to be improved further with respect to environmental and public acceptance. Helicopters generate external noise, cabin noise and vibration due to the complex nature of their dynamic systems and suffer from NOx emission; like other transport systems. It is therefore very essential that the new generation rotorcraft adress these issues to improve the situation, to make them environmentally friendly and acceptable to the general public. The modern society needs this indispensable system due to its ability to fly medical, rescue and law enforcement missions. These missions require flight profiles close to populated areas. Hence, a number of enhancements appears mandatory. In detail, the following goals are envisaged:
  • External noise levels 10 db below the current ICAO/JAA rules especially during approach,
  • A reduction of fuel consumption up to 20 % for high speed flights.
  • Cabin noise levels below 70 dBA similar to airliner cabins for normal cruise flight,
  • Cabin vibrations below 0,05 g corresponding to jet smooth ride comfort for the same flight regime.
Because of the large and fast rotating rotor, the non-symmetric rotor flow, the close vicinity of main gearbox and passenger position and the specific requests of engine performance, the targets mentioned above are highly challenging. In order to comply with the research objectives, an extreme high tech initiative is required, enabling however European aeronautic industry to hold their own against international competitors. In order to do so, short and long term objectives are planned targeting the following technology topics:
  • Short Term objectives: Noise Abatement Flight Procedures, Cabin Noise Reduction Engine Noise Reduction
  • Long Term Objectives: Active Blade Control
The activities envisaged in Friendcopter are to provide a number of key deliverables. All of these will have undergone intense efficiency testing, mostly by flight tests. In detail, they will consist of:
  • Low noise flight procedures especially for approach as guidelines for pilots,
  • A technology of noise absorbing engine inlets and outlets;
  • Methods to identify noise leaks in cabin & systems to actively and passively reduce cabin noise;
  • A control technology to reduce rotor noise, vibration excitation, and fuel consumption by distributed actuation along the blade surface;
  • A Mach-scaled wind tunnel model rotor ready for wind tunnel tests.

Additional project information:   CORDIS News article 
Title: Optimized Procedures and Techniques for IMprovement of Approach and Landing
Acronym:   OPTIMAL
Project summary:   As traffic grows steadily, airport congestion and environmental impacts become a mounting problem and already a limiting factor at some airports. OPTIMAL is an air-ground co-operative project which is aiming to define and validate innovative procedures for the approach and landing phases of aircraft and rotorcraft in a pre-operational environment. The goal is to minimise external aircraft/rotorcraft noise nuisance and increase the ATM capacity while maintaining and even improving safety. Those achievements will be enabled by new precision approach landing aids (MLS, SBAS, GBAS), more accurate navigation means (RNP 0.1) and enhanced airborne systems, such as FLS, for Non-Precision Approaches. The target time frame for the operational implementation of the OPTIMAL proposed operational concept is 2010 and beyond, it will therefore participate in reaching the targets for airport capacity developments identified in the ATM 2000+ Strategy and in the ACARE Strategic Agenda.The work to be conducted during the 4 years project is ranging from the elaboration of the operational concept up to simulations and pre-operational flight trials implying effective modifications of avionics onboard aircraft and rotorcraft and ground systems. On the ground system side special attention will be placed on the new tools which will be necessary for Air Traffic Controller to efficiently and safely manage the OPTIMAL procedures.The OPTIMAL project team is composed, among others, by the major european aircraft, rotorcraft and airborne & ground systems manufacturers, major european research institutes, various ATS providers, and key experts in procedures specification and validation exercise. This team quite early identified the key methods and tools to manage adequately all work-packages of the project. Particular emphasis is made on the project management organisation, the methodology to define the procedures, the validation methodology.

Additional project information:   Project website 

Title: Technologies and Techniques for New Maintenance Concepts
Acronym:   TATEM
Project summary:   Maintenance activities can account for as much as 20% of an operator's direct operating costs and have remained at this level for many years. However, there is scope for increasing the efficiency of the maintenance process. For example, it is estimated that line mechanics spend 30% of their time trying to access information to diagnose and rectify failures. Additionally errors in the maintenance process can impact on aircraft safety. In a recent survey the incidence of human error in the maintenance task has been estimated as contributing to 15% of aircraft accidents. The occurrence of the need for unscheduled maintenance can introduce costly delays and cancellations if the problem cannot be rectified in a timely manner. The objective of the TATEM Integrated Project is to validate technologies and techniques which can be used to transfer unscheduled maintenance to scheduled maintenance and provide the means to make the maintenance task more efficient and effective.The technologies and techniques to be validated include: Novel onboard sensor technology to gather data from the aircraft systems (avionics, utilities, actuation, engines and structures), Maintenance-free avionics,Signal processing techniques (e.g. fuzzy, logic, neural networks, model-based reasoning) which can be used to convert data into information about the health of the systems.Diagnostic methods to identify and locate failures and malfunctions and so reduce the number of incidences of no fault found, Prognostic methods to provide support for preventative maintenance actions Decision support techniques to provide the maintenance crew with process-oriented information and guidance, Human interface technologies to provide the ground crew with information at their point of work.
Title: Value Improvement through a Virtual Aeronautical Collaborative Enterprise
Acronym:   VIVACE
Project summary:   VIVACE is a project set-up in the framework of AECMA addressing aeronautics' Vision 2020 objectives to contribute significantly to fulfilling 3 specific targets of the aeronautics industry Strategic Research Agenda:
  1. Halve the time to market for new products with the help of advanced electronic analytical, design, manufacturing and maintenance process, methods & tools
  2. Increase the integration of the supply chain into the network
  3. Maintain a steady and continuous fall in travel charges through substantial cuts in operating costs.
VIVACE will develop advanced capabilities (Knowledge Enabled Engineering, Multidisciplinary Design and Optimisation, Design to Decision Objectives, Engineering Data Management, Distributed Information Systems Infrastructure for Large Enterprise and Collaborative Hub for Heterogeneous Enterprises) applied on real case engineering and business scenarios from the aircraft and engine sectors. The main result of VIVACE will be an Aeronautical Collaborative Design Environment and associated Processes, Models and Methods to design an aircraft and its engines as a whole, providing to the aeronautics supply chain in an extended enterprise, virtual products with all requested functionality and components in each phase of the product engineering life cycle. VIVACE will make its approach available to the aeronautics supply chain via existing networks, information dissemination, training and technology transfer actions. It will last 4 years and be organised into 3 technical sub projects dealing with the Aircraft, the Engine and Advanced Capabilities that will federate all developments. A fourth sub project will take care of management and innovation issues. VIVACE will start from past experiences and results gained in concurrent Engineering such as ENHANCE and will bring together 55 partners from industry, research institutes, universities and technology providers.
Title: Security of Aircraft in the Future European Environment
Acronym:   SAFEE
Project summary:   SAFEE is a large integrated project designed to restore full confidence in the air transport industry. The overall vision for SAFEE is the construction of an advanced aircraft security system designed to operate during on-board terrorist threat scenarios. The main goal of this system is to insure a full secure flight from departure to arrival destination whatever the identified threats. The project's baseline is the assumption that upstream identification control and airport specific security measures have all been completed. The project is focussed on the implementation of a wide spectrum of threat sensing systems, and the corresponding response actions against physical person(s) or electronic intruders. One of the key aspects of the project is an integrated information management system underpinned by a secure communication system. For reaching these objectives SAFEE has 5 key activities named subprojects (SP):
SP1: Onboard threat detection: a large spectrum of various threats detection system is proposed
SP2: Threat Assessment and Response Management System: a urgency decision making tool
SP3: Flight reconfiguration includes an Emergency Avoidance System and an automatic guidance system to control the aircraft for a safe return
SP4: Data protection system securing all the data exchanges (in and out the aircraft).
SP5: Innovation activities, dissemination, economics, exploitation, legal and regulatory issues about citizen's privacy and rights. The proponents are major European industrial actors of the Aeronautical sector associated with a high level research centre, several relevant SMEs and specialised universities.

Additional project information:   Europa news article 
Title: Services, integrating EO monitoring capacities, to support the implementation of European directives and policies related to "land cover and vegetation"
Acronym:   GEOLAND
Project summary:   Geoland combines 56 European service providers, research institutions, and user organisations. geoland organises the broad range of "land applications" addressed by European Directives and Policies into eight sub-projects offering a comprehensive portfolio of 61 products and services to be demonstrated and validated on 16 representative European and international testsites with 31 key user organisations. geoland observatories are providing products and services addressing regional monitoring and reporting for nature protection, water and soil issues, spatial planning, and strategic information on food security and crop monitoring, global land cover and forest change, and natural carbon fluxes. geoland is supported by a unique group of European and international organisations with a legal mandate for policy making, establishing standards and implementing policies and directives through monitoring and reporting. These users are directly involved in the product development and validation process either as members of the consortium or as associated partners committed to locally test the products and services. geoland is efficiently managed by setting a flexible framework for all partners sharing common product development and quality standards, and common intermediate products between all sub-projects. Partners targeting the same application segment are horizontally integrated; they joint develop the product portfolio on core test sites, share common value chains as far as possible, and systematically roll out to all European regions resp. global test sites. geoland supports the observatories and core services implementation with a joint "operational scenario" team analysing service infrastructure and GMES operational implementation models following an open service concept; a support team provides all partners with specific project management, strategic analysis, and communication and professional training support.
Title: Marine Environment and security for the European Area
Acronym:   MERSEA
Project summary:   MERSEA aims to develop a European system for operational monitoring and forecasting on global and regional scales of the ocean physics, biogeochemistry and ecosystems. The prediction time scales of interest extend from days to months. This integrated system will be the Ocean component of the future GMES system. At the core of the system is the collection, validation and assimilation of remote sensed and in situ data into ocean circulation models that allow for the self consistent merging of the data types, interpolation in time and space for uniform coverage, nowcasting (i.e. data synthesis in real-time), forecasting, and hindcasting, and delivery of information products. The project will develop Marine Applications addressing the needs of both intermediate and end-users, whether institutional or from the private sector, with the objective to improve the safety and efficiency of maritime transport and naval operations; to enable the sustainable exploitation and management of ocean resources (offshore oil and gas industry, fisheries); to more efficiently mitigate the effects of environmental hazards and pollution crisis (oil spills, harmful algal blooms); to improve contribution to ocean climate variability studies and seasonal climate prediction and its effects on coastal populations; to improve national security and reduce public health risks; and to advance marine research with the aim to better understand the global climate, the ocean and its ecosystems. The project will lead to a single high-resolution global ocean forecasting system shared by European partners together with a coordinated network of regional systems for European waters which will provide the platform required for coastal forecasting systems. During the project the main preoperational systems will be transitioned towards operational status and three of the centres will converge on a single ocean model framework suitable for both the deep ocean and shelf-seas.
Title: Terrestrial Wireless Infrastructure integrated with Satellite Telecommunications for E-Rural.
Acronym:   TWISTER
Project summary:   The objective of the TWISTER Integrated Project is to support the development and widespread adoption of satellite communication services to deliver broadband services for rural areas. TWISTER will provide innovative applications meeting the specific needs of various rural user communities such as local administrations, educational institutions, health care practitioners, SMEs and agricultural communities. Concrete applications such as data transfer and videoconferencing between islands in Malta or Greece, high data rate Internet access for villages in Spain or France, e-business development for SMEs in rural regions of Poland will be tested on various sites (35 sites deployed in the first 18 months and up to 350 ultimately), selected with the support of national and regional public authorities. User satisfaction (quality of service) will be evaluated to propose improvement and to specify a roadmap for further services deployment. The integration of space-based infrastructure with terrestrial systems, aims at achieving a seamless broadband coverage in rural areas. TWISTER will investigate a number of hybrid satellite-wireless architectures (with adaptations of security or billing schemes) and validate their on-site performances. To promote the use of satellite services, the project will foster the adoption of the DVB-RCS open standard. TWISTER will complement ESA and Satlabs group activities by validating the performance of low cost interoperable DVB-RCS terminals at end-to-end application level in a real operational environment. Being able to offer simultaneous services over large areas, the space-based infrastructures will favour the enlargement of the European Union. TWISTER will involve partners and user communities from the new entrants (Poland, Malta, Latvia), current EU member states (France, Greece, Spain, The Netherlands, Sweden) and countries associated with the FP6 programme (Norway, Canada). The TWISTER Consortium, involving all actors in the Telecom Value Chain, like User Communities, Service Provider, Satellite Operator or Equipment Manufacturers, under Astrium coordination, will create the necessary conditions to successfully deploy all over European rural regions such satellite solutions as a complement to terrestrial means, for the benefit of the population and the economy.
Additional project information:   Europa news article 
Title: European Windtunnel Association
Acronym:   EWA
Project summary:   The goal of EWA is to form a European Wind Tunnel Association for aeronautical applications and related advanced measuring technologies with a uniform and cohesive management structure and a technical organisation to execute a joint programme of activities. Its partnership comprises in total 14 partners from 8 European countries, including 3 industrial operators, 3 commercial operators, 7 research organisations, and one organisation for post-doctoral education. The wind tunnels, which are of utmost importance for industrial wind tunnel testing for aeronautics in Europe, are operated by 11 of the 14 partners. Five partners are leading developers of advanced measuring technologies for wind tunnels in Europe. Due to the complexity of the organisational structures and missions of the existing wind tunnel organisations, EWA will proceed in a four-step approach (Preparation, Harmonisation, Implementation and Presentation of Integration). In particular, EWA will integrate and strengthen the European research area by building lasting relationships and interdependencies between the major European wind tunnel operators and developers of advanced measuring technologies. This will allow all partners to offer to researchers and the aerospace industry a comprehensive set of services and will bring new experimental techniques into operation in industrial wind tunnels much faster than in the past. Methods for harmonising standards and for assessing the quality of experimental simulation as well as methods to harmonise wind tunnel test techniques will be developed jointly. Due to this approach considerable improvements in quality and reduction of costs for wind tunnel testing can be expected. These core activities will be complemented by information exchange with industrial end users, with SME's for manufacturing wind tunnel models and/or instrumentation, with universities for training students and for developing new measuring technologies and by training and exchange of personnel.
Title: Global Monitoring for security and stability
Acronym:   GMOSS
Project summary:   The objective of GMOSS to gather Europe's research community into a network of excellence that is able to work together towards an enhanced European capability in monitoring for civil security applications through a joint programme of research whose priorities are agreed with end-users and where each partner's effort contributes to the overall objectives. The partners will share staff, software and infrastructure in work which includes
  • research into solutions for remote monitoring including the development and assessment of airborne (manned and unmanned) and satellite sensors as well as the ground and communication systems necessary to make the images and signals available for processing as rapidly as possible.
  • development and assessment of tools and algorithms that can automate the processing, interpreting, cataloguing and archiving of images including classification, feature extraction, change detection, map generation and visualisation
  • understanding how to use this information to provide the EU with the knowledge it needs to act more effectively and efficiently in four main areas:
    a) humanitarian aid - including early warnings, vulnerability assessment, information flow between field and headquarters personnel;
    b) reconstruction - including damage assessment, mine clearance operations;
    c) verification of non-proliferation treaties including characterization of nuclear and chemical facilities, development of tools for remote verification of treaties, localization of testing sites;
    d) police operations including protection of Europe's security through vulnerability assessment and developing stability beyond the EU's borders through better border control, conflict prevention and infrastructure monitoring. And developing a identifying at a European level future organisational scenarios that could enable the timely communication and exchange of critical information and proper decision-taking mechanisms in the civil security domain.

Additional project information:   Project website