The SESAR Knowledge Transfer Network coordinated by:
University of Westminster, EUROCONTROL, European Aviation Safety Agency, Frequentis, Innaxis, Technical University Delft, University of Belgrade – Faculty of Transport and Traffic Engineering, University of Trieste.
Engage is managed by a consortium of academia and industry, with the support of the SESAR JU, to promote and facilitate the development of air traffic management research in Europe.
Our focus is two-fold: inspiring new researchers and helping to align exploratory and industrial research, through a wide range of activities and financial support actions.
Engage is an outward-facing network, advancing innovation and collaboration. We welcome the participation of new industry partners to join the growing group.
At the core of the KTN is the definition of various thematic challenges: new ideas suggested by the research community, not already included within the scope of an existing SESAR project. They are developed along with the ATM concepts roadmap and complementarily with some of the network’s PhDs and theses. Each challenge will have one or more dedicated, thematic workshop(s), and dedicated activities at the SIDs. To further promote cooperation between industry and academia, sixteen focused projects supported by catalyst funding, will be awarded to groups (for example, an industry partner and an academic institution) to conduct specific activities in support of developing solutions to the thematic challenges, moving closer towards industry goals and objectives, and higher TRLs. The funding may be used, for example, to hold several technical meetings to develop ideas further, to carry out additional data analyses or a user requirements survey. It will be made available quickly to maximise its impact during the lifetime of the network. The requirement to attend a thematic workshop in order to apply for funding will be dropped from the Call, and not all of the funding will be tied to proposals developing the thematic challenges.
The knowledge hub will be the one-stop, go-to source for information: a single European point of entry for ATM knowledge. With improved search functionality, researchers may turn to the hub as an accessible meta-source of research data, and to contact other researchers to combine disciplines and share ideas. Industry partners may seek inspiration from exploratory and unconventional research and promote their application towards the operational context. The knowledge hub will also host links to various events, the network’s repository, regularly-updated action and planning summary reports from the PhDs/theses supported by the network (with direct links with the supervisors and researchers) and the ATM concepts roadmap, plus the KTN’s community interaction forum.
Engage will stimulate the transfer of suitable exploratory research towards application-oriented research, paving the way for potential industrial research. It will identify the maturity of research results, facilitating the link with higher-maturity research (e.g. within the SESAR industrial research programme). Lessons learned regarding barriers to, and enablers of, the transfer to higher TRLs will be disseminated. The KTN will support better collaboration with industry and researchers early in the concept development stages, ensuring that the potential of new concepts is recognised. These support actions include: (1) getting researchers in different research areas talking to each other more; (2) giving researchers better access to information; and, (3) cataloguing and mapping research in a more useful way. Researchers with common objectives will find peers and other projects/initiatives more easily. The KTN will foster links with a variety of disciplines to improve insights into ATM system functionality and performance. Interdisciplinarity and cross-fertilisation will be incorporated into the (approximately) twenty thematic workshops, PhDs and theses, summer schools and SESAR Innovation Days. It will encourage the exploration of innovative and unconventional ideas and research directions in ATM.
Engage will support and facilitate the development of a future ATM skilled workforce that is able to keep innovating and improving the ATM system. Excellence in education and training is a pre-requisite for attracting top-level talent to the ATM sector. Engage attaches very high priority to developing free educational and training materials that will stimulate the interest of a new generation of operational and engineering staff to pursue careers in ATM and airports and to enhancing the opportunities of postgraduate students to participate and contribute to ATM research, including multi-faceted support for the PhDs/theses (with exceptional mentoring from the consortium and the industry partners). Underpinning this programme will be the KTN’s summer schools and thematic workshops, and integration with the SESAR Innovation Days. To coordinate with other activities, such as the catalyst funding and the PhDs/theses, the four-day summer schools will be organised in years 2-4 of the KTN, i.e. 2019-2021 inclusive.