The new Accelerator ready to take flight

Today (2nd September) we are delighted to announce the launch of our new Future of Air Mobility Accelerator, in partnership with the Future Flight Challenge from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI). 

Connected Places Catapult launches its latest Accelerator, to develop and scale new solutions and technologies for the aviation sector.  

In partnership with UKRI’s Future Flight Challenge, the accelerator will be selecting 12 SMEs to join a 6-month programme, where they will receive support from a consortium of industry, academic and regulatory partners on the trial and testing of disruptive innovations. 

The programme is looking for SMEs of TRL6+, though is open to receiving applications from earlier stage businesses that are aligned with the key challenges set out below: 

  • Data Driven Aviation – how we can better capture and utilise data to increase operational and commercial efficiency within the aviation industry. Whether this is with the collection of on-aircraft, airside operations or customer data, we would like to see how data gathered can enhance decision-making. 
  • Smart Airports – how we can integrate the next generation of autonomous solutions into airport management and security operations, alongside exploring disruptive technologies that will support the aviation industry in reaching Net Zero targets. 
  • Advanced Air Mobility – how we can accelerate the development of Advanced Air Mobility by exploring the systems, infrastructure technologies and modelling and simulation tools required for commercialisation. 

Connected Places Catapult will be delivering the programme in partnership with Plus X who will support the SMEs through a bespoke programme roadmap tailored to their requirements, including investment readiness, technology and product development support, alongside introductions to aviation stakeholders and potential customers. These activities will be co-designed with SMEs in order to grow their businesses and adapt propositions to programme partner requirements. 

Alex Weedon, Director of SME and Academic Engagement, Connected Places Catapult said: “I am so pleased that Connected Places Catapult is once again providing SMEs with a pioneering accelerator programme in a new and growing market, helping to make the UK and its innovative SMEs leaders in the Future of Air Mobility.” 

Simon Masters, Deputy Challenge Director of the Future Flight challenge, at UKRI said: “The Future Flight challenge is actively looking to push the boundaries of aviation technology and encourage new players into the market. We are delighted to be working with Connected Places Catapult to deliver this accelerator programme, providing SMEs a great opportunity to trial and test their disruptive innovations. 

Toby Kress, Programme Director, Plus X said: “This is an incredibly exciting time for innovation in air mobility. New technologies and approaches are emerging and rapidly transforming the way we move people and goods around the world and within our cities. Plus X is thrilled to be working with Connected Places Catapult and our leading industry partners to deliver an accelerator programme that champions the innovators at the cutting edge of this change – helping to speed up the development, adoption and commercialisation of impactful new solutions.” 

Applications are open from today (2nd September) and will close on Sunday 26th September at 11.59pm. You can find out more and apply here.