France and Germany have awarded the first-ever
contract – a Joint Concept Study (JCS) – to Dassault Aviation
and Airbus for the Future Combat Air System (FCAS) programme.
of the JCS was announced by the French Minister of the Armed
Forces, Florence Parly, and her German counterpart, Ursula von der
Leyen, at a meeting in Paris on Wednesday.
The decision by both countries represents a
milestone to secure European sovereignty and technological
leadership in the military aviation sector for the coming decades.
Starting date for the two-year study is 20 February 2019.
Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault
Aviation, said, “This new step is the cornerstone to ensure
tomorrow’s European strategic autonomy. We, as Dassault Aviation,
will mobilize our competencies as System Architect and Integrator,
to meet the requirements of the Nations and to keep our continent
as a world-class leader in the crucial field of Air Combat
This planned Next Generation Weapons System will
consist of a highly capable manned “New Generation Fighter” (NGF)
teaming with a set of new and upgraded weapons as well as a set of
unmanned systems (Remote Carriers) linked by a Combat Cloud and
its Ecosystem embedded in a System-of-Systems FCAS architecture.
Dirk Hoke, CEO of Airbus Defence and Space,
said, “FCAS is one of the most ambitious European defence
programmes of the century. With today’s contract signature, we are
finally setting this high-technology programme fully in motion.
Both companies are committed to providing the best solutions to
our Nations with regard to the New Generation Fighter as well as
the systems of systems accompanying it. We are truly excited about
having been given this opportunity and appreciate the trust placed
in both our companies.”
The JCS is based on the bi-nationally agreed
High Level Common Operational Requirements Document (HLCORD)
signed at Berlin Air Show ILA in April 2018 between the Defence
Ministers of France and Germany as well as respective national
Its aim is to conceptualise the different FCAS
capabilities and to pave the way for future design,
industrialisation, as well as an estimated full operational
capability by 2040. The study will prepare and initiate
demonstrator programmes for launch at the Paris Air Show in June