The initiative of the Ministry of Defense "GCAP Acceleration Initiative" kicks off today, with the opening of about 40 technological explorations aimed at the business and academic world, which aims to support and increase the network of Italian excellence that will support the Defense in the development phase of the GCAP programme, aimed at realizing, in collaboration with the United Kingdom and Japan, a System of Systems based on a sixth generation platform, capable of operating in multi-domain scenarios.
These technological explorations – open until 19 May 2023 – will bring together the best proposals on a broad spectrum of topics, including propulsion systems, optical and laser systems, IR sensors, materials and metamaterials for low observability or with high thermal performance, navigation, model generation and development of digital twins of aeronautical systems, artificial intelligence (AI) applied to the management of autonomous systems and mission systems, cyber security and integrated electronic devices. Downstream of the collection process, the selection of the best design solutions will start, which will lead to the engagement of the entrepreneurial realities and the best talents necessary in the co-design phase, together with the Ministry of Defense and industries.
The initiative is of fundamental importance, as it will allow Italy to participate in the GCAP program with a contribution in terms of technological solutions of absolute value, in order to exercise national operational, technological and industrial sovereignty, while promoting the competitiveness of the Italian industry in the sector, with obvious positive transversal effects for the entire national economic fabric.
The "GCAP Acceleration Initiative" will benefit from an IT platform created in collaboration with CEFRIEL (Politecnico di Milano) through which to do technological scouting: Foresight Acceleration Platform (www.foresightap.it). The site will host various technological exploration topics that will respond to specific capacity development needs for the program, with the aim of intercepting innovative solutions that can be developed thanks to the network of leading Italian industries in the various sectors. There Foresight Acceleration Platform it will form a bridge between Defense and the national innovation ecosystem, presenting the challenges to research players and businesses, in order to identify the most suitable technological solutions.
The initiative is promoted in collaboration with the Federation of Italian Companies for Aerospace, Defense and Security (Aiad), Leonardo, Avio Aero, Elettronica, MBDA Italia and Cefriel. Universities, research centres, companies and startups will be involved in sharing ideas, skills and frontier technologies to work together on innovative solutions that can be applied in the process of technological maturation of the GCAP.