Cranfield University has signed a strategic framework agreement today with multinational defence, security and aerospace company BAE Systems, to establish a long-term relationship in research, education and consultancy.
Cranfield is the first of a few, selected universities in the UK to sign such an agreement, after BAE Systems announced that in the future it will focus on building partnerships with a smaller number of universities which shared expertise in particular areas of future capability.
Professor Philip John, University Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Michael Christie, Chief Technologist for the Military Air and Information business within BAE Systems, signed the agreement at the University’s Bedfordshire campus.
Michael Christie said: "Today marks a really important step forward in the way that we, as a company, develop future capabilities. Cranfield is the first of a handful of universities that we have selected to form long-term strategic partnerships to drive forward research and development of specific technologies. I'm really excited about what the partnership will bring and I think that this more focused combination of industry expertise and leading academics will deliver even more innovative solutions for UK industry."
Professor John commented: “A strong focus on industry has been fundamental to Cranfield since its creation and this is as important as ever. We are delighted to sign this framework agreement with BAE Systems, a world-leading company, which has a long engagement with Cranfield. The agreement enables this relationship to grow even stronger in the future and we look forward to working with BAE Systems on exciting research and education innovations.”
Cranfield University’s Director of Aerospace, Professor Iain Gray, commented: “Cranfield has a long history with BAE Systems and we are proud of our work with them. This new announcement is a very important step in helping to build on these links and creating a strong relationship between the two organisations in the future.”
Cranfield University and BAE Systems have worked closely together on many projects in the past, including FLAVIIR, a major research programme that developed DEMON, a turbo-jet powered Uninhabited Air Vehicle with unique control technologies that achieved highly innovative flapless flight in the UK in 2010.
Photo (left to right) Professor Philip John, University Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Michael Christie, Chief Technologist for the Military Air and Information business within BAE Systems