(July 18th-22nd, 2022) After three year’s in the Covid-19 doldrums, the Farnborough Airshow has risen phoenix-like from the pandemic ashes to prove to the world, it still organises one of the leading global aerospace and defence industry events.
The stats alone are impressive.
100,000 square metres of exhibition space that includes four major halls, boasting more than 1,500 exhibitors with 99 percent of stands sold; over 80,000 visitors expected during the four trade days as well as many more thousands on the final public day; not forgetting the 87 static aircraft and those involved in a flying display where the latter takes place on each afternoon of the week’s show. The spectacle involves commercial airliners, military jets and helicopters.
This year, Farnborough’s role will carry even greater significance serving as the first major event to reconnect colleagues from around the world, enabling business growth and recovery as well as offering a sense of normality. The one country missing is Russia, banned after invading Ukraine in February.
Gareth Rogers, CEO of Farnborough International, commented, “With over 70 percent of exhibitors from more than 49 countries, we are thrilled to see the eagerness of the industry to return to face-to-face events and work together to initiate global change.” Adding, “I think there will be a celebratory atmosphere, that’s the feeling we’re sensing from the industry.”
As evtolinsights.com specialises in writing about eVTOLs and the infrastructure, it is warming to see the growing presence of this nascent industry at such an esteemed international show. Vertical Aerospace and Lilium take centre stage at stand locations 41000 and 1111.
Ambika Sharma, a Vertical Aerospace Consultant, commented, “Vertical will be displaying a full-scale model of the VX4 in its booth stand throughout the week. While, several company representatives are to be present on different days of the week, including members from the senior team (Harry Holt, Deputy CEO, Eduardo Dominguez Puerta, Chief Commercial Officer plus others who are not yet confirmed), as well as staff from the commercial and engineering teams.”
A Lilium spokesperson, said, “Lilium’s stand is in Hall 1 and will have scale models of the Jet interior and exterior on display. Company Executives available for media briefings on the 18th to 20th include Daniel Wiegand, (co-founder and CEO); Sebastian Borel, (Senior Vice President); Yves Yemsi (Chief Operating Officer); and Alastair McIntosh (Chief Technology Officer.)”
The spokesperson continued, “Meanwhile, on Tuesday 19th at 10.30 am in Hall 4, Daniel Wiegand is to deliver a keynote speech, entitled ‘How will advanced air mobility and eVTOL’s such as Lilium radically transform the way the world moves?’ While Alistair McIntosh is part of a panel discussion ‘Tech innovation and bringing AAM from promise to reality’ in the same hall that afternoon starting at 1.30 pm.”
Other eVTOL-related and green energy system companies exhibiting include Altair, Cranfield Aerospace, Embry-Riddle, UKRI (UK Research & Innovation) and Zeroavia, alongside electric-powered aircraft like Electro-Flight and Eviation.
Wisk’s full-scale eVTOL aircraft – known as Cora – will also be on display at Farnborough in its own dedicated chalet next to the Boeing pavilion. Gary Gysin, Wisk’s CEO, will be on-site during the event alongside several other team members and those on the Board. And watch out for the Irish and Dublin-based Avtrain, a drone pilot and operator training institute for fixed-wing, hybrid, single and multi-rotor drones up to 75kgs. The company can be located in Hall 1.
Exhibitor Floor Plan
Another important discussion is also on the Tuesday (start time 10 am: Chalet C121) that features Vertical Aerospace and Skyports. Vertical is represented by Andrew Macmillan (Director of Strategy) and Skyports by the ever-present, Duncan Walker (CEO). The topic “Advanced Air Mobility in the UK and how to accelerate the ecosystem needed to deliver it”, is to be discussed. Virgin Atlantic and Atkins are also part of these talks.
Meanwhile, other eVTOL-related keynote speakers include Joby Aviation’s Founder and CEO, JoBen Bevirt; Supernal CTO, Ben Diachun; Airbus CEO, Guillaume Faury; and the UKs Civil Aviation Authority Chairman, Sir Stephen Hillier.
A public day known as Farnborough Friday, has been created after the previous ‘people’s weekend’ was cancelled in 2019, when the attending public had voiced many hundreds of negative comments the previous year, in particular, criticising the Red Arrows limited flyover. This had followed after tightened and restrictive regulations in the aftermath of the horrific Shoreham Airshow disaster.
At the time, the organisers cited declining popularity, attendances and value for money among a range of reasons for the cancellation. Farnborough Friday on July 22nd, is to be launched with the aim to “inspire and engage the industry’s future workforce.”
A major highlight on that day will be The Pioneers of Tomorrow when industry exhibitors are offered a rare opportunity to engage with and motivate future aerospace recruits.
Aimed at school children aged 11+, school leavers, graduates and career movers, “Pioneers of Tomorrow,” says a press release, “will introduce the next generation of leaders, innovators and pioneers to employers, providing valuable insight into the wealth of career opportunities available throughout dynamic, global industries.”
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