Browse Catapults

Catalysing the future of flight

estimated to be added to the UK economy by 2030 by drone services

Demonstrated the first off-grid solar recharge and flight of an electric aircraft

Developed the first operational blueprint for the introduction of zero emission aircraft into airports and airfields

Developed the first Droneport Design and Development Framework

Connected Places Catapult is working at the leading edge of opportunity and innovation in aviation, spanning areas such as unscrewed air mobility, digitising airspace management and Zero Emission Flight.

Connected Places Catapult’s COO, Rachel Gardner-Poole, was recently invited to chair the Zero Emission Flight (ZEF) Delivery Group under the Jet
Zero Council. This aims to put the UK at the forefront of innovation to green aviation and support the development of zero-emission planes and the
airport infrastructure required for them.

In parallel to this, the Catapult is also leading the way by bringing together government, business, airport operators, airlines and innovators to support the rollout of Zero Emission Flight Infrastructure. This includes supporting the first off-grid solar charging flight of an electric plane, as well as developing infrastructure to support hydrogen fuel.

On the future of new forms of air mobility, the Catapult lead the Government Drones Pathfinder Catalyst Programme to realise the benefits drones can bring to the UK economy – estimated to add £45bn by 2030.

This will accelerate the commercialisation of drone services by enabling live demonstrations of applications including search and rescue operations, precision agriculture, infrastructure inspection, wildlife protection, and environmental monitoring.

In addition, the Catapult is now supporting six Future Flight Challenge consortia, a £300 million programme aiming to transform how we connect
people, transport goods, and deliver services in a sustainable way providing socio-economic benefits using new classes of air vehicles with novel technologies.

The Government has supported this research into Zero Emission Flight Infrastructure at our airports and airfields. I am passionate for this to be a strong and innovative sector which has sustainability at its heart.

Robert Courts MP
Former Minister for Aviation