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Financial package pledged to support UK aerospace industry

10 July 2012

Business secretary Vince Cable has announced a further £120m of investment in the UK aerospace industry. The new funding, part of a total £200m investment in aerospace since 2011, was announced alongside a new vision for the future of the sector which is intended to help UK aerospace firms win billions of pounds worth of new contracts over the next 15 to 20 years.

Dr Cable (left) on a previous visit to Airbus, Filton
Dr Cable (left) on a previous visit to Airbus, Filton

The initiative will see government and industry working together - under the guise of the Aerospace Growth Partnership (AGP) - to secure the future for UK aerospace. Part of this overall funding includes £60m for a UK Centre for Aerodynamics.

Speaking at the Farnborough Airshow, Dr Cable gave the first details of how funding for the new virtual aerodynamics centre would be distributed, including around £12m for capability building work within the centre to develop and establish the UK’s intellectual leadership in aerodynamics.

It will be supported by: £28.2m of government investment allocated to six innovative new projects in the area of aerodynamics - five Research & Technology projects and one project with a capital grant – with a further £20m now to be added by industry; and a new competition for collaborative aerodynamics research projects to be formally launched through the Technology Strategy Board. Up to £20m of government money will be matched by up to £20m from business. 

The remaining funding is made up of: government and industry investing £40m each in SILOET - a Rolls-Royce led programme of low carbon aero engine research; £15m joint government and industry investment awarded today (July 10) by the Technology Strategy Board and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council to 11 major business-led R&D projects. These will develop technology that will grow the sector and give the industry a competitive advantage in the global market.

Finally, some £3m each from government and industry will also go to fund 500 aeronautical engineers at Masters level over the next three years.

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