Thales and ATI to research new aircraft communications technology


Global technology provider Thales has collaborated with the UK Government-backed Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) to jointly invest £20m on a research project that will develop next-generation aircraft communications technology.

A part of Thales’ strategic investments portfolio, the research intends to place the UK as a leader in the global aerospace industry and create 145 high-value jobs in the country.

The research will also develop skills in software network engineering, radio frequency technology, and digital and signal processing and security.

Products to be developed from the research will provide safer and more secure communications to passengers, and cabin and cockpit operators.

Thales has also opened a new customer engagement suite at ATI in order to promote discussions between customers, the UK industry partners, and emerging small and medium enterprises.

The suite will further help in building a globally competitive UK civil aircraft communications and connectivity industrial base.

“The opening of the engagement suite and the announcement of £20m investment in innovative research represents an exciting opportunity for Thales."

Thales UK CEO Victor Chavez said: “The opening of the engagement suite and the announcement of £20m investment in innovative research represents an exciting opportunity for Thales.

“It also highlights the importance of the government’s industrial strategy in the aerospace sector and in particular success of the ATI as a means of attracting investment in to the UK.”

The global commercial air traffic is estimated to double every 15 years, and the aircraft operators are facing the challenge of providing reliable, secure and cost-effective communication services to passengers.

Currently setting the UK’s national aerospace technology strategy, ATI aims to invest £3.9bn in related research and technologies by 2026.


Image: Thales’ newly opened customer engagement suite at ATI in the UK. Photo: courtesy of Thales Group.