Lift-off for innovation at the ILA

Lift-off for innovation at the ILA

Focus on unmanned flight - Berlin Aviation Summit with Tom Enders, Sir Tim Clark, Patrick Ky, Marc Allen, Éric Trappier, Fang Liu - ILA Future Lab: Disruption meets eco-efficiency - Taking a close look at innovations in the space industry - Conference programme: Drones, digitalisation, sustainability - Germany’s armed forces have the largest display
- Presentation of the Innovation Award of German Aviation

Berlin, March 2, 2018 -  From 25 to 29 April 2018 the ILA welcomes the aerospace world to Berlin. This is the leading fair for innovations at the heart of Europe, where prominent manufacturers, experts and political decision-makers meet to determine how to address the issues facing the industry in the future.

Breakthrough in unmanned flight
Rapid progress is currently being made with unmanned flight and self-piloting aircraft. All over the world engineers are developing entirely new concepts and business models such as air taxis that can pilot themselves. The ILA will show what is already possible and the challenges that still need to be overcome.

The CityAirbus will also be on show at the ILA. Airbus is using this innovative aircraft to focus on the constantly increasing transport problems in the world’s main cities. The CityAirbus is a battery-powered electric aircraft for the passenger transport of the future. It can take off and land vertically and a later version is also intended to be self-piloting. The first flight is planned for December this year.

Airbus is also presenting its Zephyr, a solar-powered drone that can remain at high altitudes for several weeks, thereby offering an alternative to commercial satellites.

Berlin Aviation Summit:Take-off for the ‘Davos of aviation’
How can aviation achieve emission-free flight? What will the aircraft of the future look like? What will be the dominant features of aviation in the 21st century? On April 24 the first Berlin Aviation Summit, organised by the German Aerospace Center (DLR) and the German Aerospace Industries Association (BDLI), will bring together outstanding personalities from the industry to discuss the main challenges and opportunities in aviation. The debate between Airbus CEO Tom Enders, Emirates president Sir Tim Clark, European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) chief executive Patrick Ky, Boeing International president Marc Allen and GIFAS Chairman Éric Trappier will examine what the aircraft of the future will look like. They will be followed by the representatives of Siemens, NASA and Solar Impulse, who will discuss the possibilities for emission-free flight. Fang Liu, secretary general of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), and leading figures from Munich Re and Atmosfair will discuss who will be shaping the future of aviation.

ILA Future Lab shows the way forward
The ILA Future Lab, a joint venture between the German Federal Ministry of Economic Affairs and the BDLI, is one of the main platforms for innovations at the ILA 2018. It will concentrate on the cabins of the future, hybrid-electric flight, urban air transport and aero engines of the future, from the point of view of digitalisation, sustainability and interconnected systems. The exhibition at the ILA Future Lab will provide an insight into the federal government’s aerospace programme. At the ILA Future Lab Forum international leaders in industry and research, including the DLR and the Fraunhofer Institute, will discuss forward-looking topics. As part of the Future Lab Forum, the accelerators Airbus Bizlab, ESA BIC and STARBURST are facilitating networking between start-ups and leading players in the industry. Each day ten aspiring companies will be presenting their innovations here.

A close look at space flight
Once again, Europe’s largest space exhibition is taking place at the ILA under the heading of ‘Space for Earth’. It will show how innovations in the space sector are improving life on earth. The data collected by the combined German-French climate mission MERLIN will be used to compile a map showing methane concentrations around the world. For the first time this is being done with the aid of laser technology, which can also take readings at night and in cloudy conditions. This mission is the first joint project by Germany and France in the field of earth observation since 1994.

Space experts from all over the world will be discussing these and other innovative topics during the ILA Space Day and the Astronauts´ Day. Here attention is focusing in particular on the new Alexander Gerst mission, ‘Horizons’, with more innovative ISS experiments, and the Orion space research programme.

Heinrich Hertz is the first German communication satellite to have been launched for 16 years. Its innovative features include on-board processors capable of handling information directly on the satellite, enabling its performance to be adapted during its deployment to meet changing technical demands. Moreover its innovative combined chemical-electrical propulsion unit occupies less space, thereby increasing the payload and enabling more technology and more experiments to be included.

Another exhibition topic will be the new Ariane 6 launcher, which includes a gas generator manufactured entirely by 3D printing and, for the first time, has a cryogenic, re-ignitable upper stage, knows as Vinci.

Space for Society is a particular highlight, comparing how space research affects our daily lives, and what our everyday world would look like without it.

Conference programme: Drones, digitalisation, decarbonisation
Renewable kerosene, new kinds of hi-tech materials and nano-satellites: the ILA offers an unrivalled programme of conferences. Well over 50 events will be taking place during the five days of the conference. Leading figures from industry, science and politics will be discussing major trends such as digitalisation, Industry 4.0 and cyber-security, the far-reaching effects of which will impact on other areas too as well as aviation. There will be conferences on eco-friendly production methods and on the use of alternative fuels at airports. Other events will analyse the available potentials in disaster management and the integration of drones in European airspace.

The Bundeswehr shows its colours
Once again this year Germany’s armed forces, the Bundeswehr, are the largest single exhibitor. The ILA will feature numerous military aircraft belonging to the Bundeswehr and allied forces, both on the ground and in the air. The flying programme will be augmented by large-screen multimedia displays showing the view from the cockpit as well as 3D presentations. Germany’s armed forces will also be using the ILA to present some advanced concepts at the highest technical level. These will include innovative developments in the areas of cyber-security, air transport and drones. Yet another highlight: simulators will be used to present the everyday activities of German military personnel. 

Focus on helicopters at the HeliLounge
Yet another innovation hub at the ILA is the HeliLounge, spotlighting the indispensable role that modern helicopters play in both the military and the civilian fields. Helicopters are vitally important in military operations of all kinds and intensities, disaster missions, transporting the sick and casualties, police operations and servicing offshore facilities. Innovative concepts such as hybrid and fully electrically powered helicopters will be featured at the ILA. 

Experts in this field will also be on hand to explain the various careers associated with helicopters.

Presentation of the Aviation Innovation Award 
The Innovation Award of German Aviation (IDL) will be presented at the ILA Future Lab FORUM on 25 April 2018. This award is presented for groundbreaking developments in four categories: ‘Industry 4.0’, ‘Reduced Emissions’, ‘Customer Journey’ and ‘Cross Innovation’. This is an opportunity to take a first hand look at aspects which directly affect the future of aviation. The patron of the IDL is the Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Brigitte Zypries, and it is organised by the German Aerospace Industries Association (BDLI), the German Aviation Association (BDL), the Federal Association for Digital Technology Bitkom e.V. and the P3 group. This year’s partners are Roland Berger, Accenture Dienstleistungen GmbH, MTU Aero Engines AG, Flughafen Berlin Brandenburg GmbH, Fraport AG and, for the first time, Lufthansa Technik AG and Airbus S.A.S.