Leonardo becomes a strategic partner in the GCAP (Global Combat Air Program) which aims to create a sixth-generation air platform, a new-generation system of systems for multi-domain operations, to be operational by 2035.
The program, which involves Italy, UK and Japan, represents a challenge aimed at protecting and strengthening national technological and industrial sovereignty while ensuring prosperity, safeguarding specialist skills, generating employment and improving the competitiveness of the Aerospace, Defense and Security sectors in international markets.
The program will encompass the entire Italian supply chain, including universities, research centers and SME companies as well as the industries involved.
Italy, UK and Japan, through their national industry leads Leonardo, BAE Systems and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, will collaborate in the development of technologies for sixth-generation combat aircraft that will operate within a system of systems concept.
In addition to Leonardo, which has already participated in the program since 2018 through Leonardo UK, the Italian team will involve Avio Aero, Elettronica and MBDA Italia together with the country’s wider innovation and manufacturing ecosystem.
The national ambition is to develop a truly innovative model of collaboration between Defence and industry that can be used as a point of reference for future programmes. In a systemic vision, the technology areas ranging from aeronautics to electronics, from cyberspace to power and propulsion, leveraging on artificial intelligence, big data analytics, quantum computing, digital twin, cyber security and the integration between crewed and uncrewed platforms.