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ILA 2022: Industrial partners seek to break FCAS impasse

An artist's rendering of the New Generation Fighter and Remote Carrier elements of the Future Combat Air System. (MTU Aero)

The primary industrial partners heading up the trinational Future Combat Air System (FCAS)/Système de Combat Aérien Futur (SCAF) will look to use the ILA Berlin Air Show to break the impasse surrounding the programme.

With development work on the programme having been halted since March because of a dispute over work-share, Germany's Airbus, France's Dassault, and Spain's Indra will be looking to the biennial event being held in Berlin from 22 to 26 June to provide fresh impetus to efforts to move the effort forward.

The CEO of France‘s Dassault, Éric Trappier, first disclosed the industrial impasse during an earnings call on 4 March, saying that he had pulled his engineers off the programme until his company is able to agree on a way forward with Airbus and Indra on Phase 1B of the project. He followed this up in early June when he told French media that the 2040 in-service date for FCAS/SCAF is no longer achievable given the delays to date, and that “the 2050s” is the earliest date now achievable.

In response to Trappier's earlier comments, Airbus said that the agreement that Dassault is waiting on is not equitable, but that it was confident a way forward could be found. Neither Airbus nor Indra offered comment on Trappier's later remarks on the delayed timeline.

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