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The South West’s aerospace sector has secured £236,000 to create a Future Flight Innovation Zone (FFIZ) in Devon and Somerset. This initiative aims to promote safe and environmentally friendly aviation and will focus on Exeter Airport and iAero in Yeovil.

The FFIZ will foster collaboration among industry stakeholders, academia, local authorities, and institutions like the Met Office and the Connected Places Catapult, focusing on sustainable and connected environments. The collective goal is to accelerate the decarbonisation of flight, offering support and advice to technology companies in the sector.

The funding will provide:

  • A Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) “Sand Box” allowing up to four companies to work on product certification with CAA Innovation Team support.
  • CAA Innovation Advisor time to develop FFIZ activities.
  • Infrastructure funding for future flight testing and demonstrations.

Councillors have highlighted the aerospace sector’s economic significance, noting its employment impact and potential financial benefits, including adding up to £45 billion to the UK economy by 2030 through uncrewed air systems. The FFIZ aims to leverage the region’s strong aerospace assets, like Exeter College’s Future Skills Centre, to support this transition and ensure sustainable air travel.

How is this helping Devon reach net-zero?   

T37, Seize opportunities to trial low-carbon aviation

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