Composites for Aerospace

Innovation for Zero Emission Aircraft

Composites will unlock the design potential for future, cleaner aircraft and propulsion systems.  Lightweight, tough and strong, advanced composites are enabling a decarbonised commercial fleet and opening up new, exciting opportunities in urban air mobility. At the National Composites Centre, our team of specialist engineers and network of world-leading industrial partners will help you exploit the full potential of composites.



Urban air mobility

We’re part of the revolution in future air mobility. To meet the lightweight targets of the next generation of Urban Air Mobility and eVTOL vehicles, composites will be fundamental to the design of both the aerostructures and propulsion systems. The market for urban electric air vehicles is predicted to be worth $1.5Tr by 2040 opening up new opportunities for the UK's composites industry.

Image: Vertical Aerospace

Hydrogen propulsion systems

Composites are by far the best engineering solution for hydrogen storage systems. To achieve the range required on an aircraft, hydrogen fuel will have to be stored in a liquid form at cryogenic temperatures, around -200°C to deliver the maximum energy density. At the NCC, we’re specifying, designing and manufacturing cryogenic hydrogen storage vessels that will transform the potential for future cleaner propulsion systems.

Image: Lentus Composites

Want to work with us? Talk to the Aerospace team about your projects

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Composites industrialisation

Manufacturability is at the heart of what we do. Our design and manufacturing teams work together to ensure data is embedded in the process from day one, saving time and effort and enabling us to take ideas from concept to reality quickly, using an array of tools and techniques. By optimising the design early-on and delivering full product life-cycle analysis, our customers have the results they need to commercialise and scale solutions.

Process innovation

The National Composites Centre is home to world-leading automated manufacturing technologies designed and developed by our team of engineers which enable High Rate, Complex Geometry and Large Scale manufacturing capabilities offering aerospace customers a state-of-the-art manufacturing testbed to trial new process innovations.

Collaborative R&D

The NCC has established a broad membership including end-users, OEMs and materials, equipment and production suppliers. Our strong aerospace network helps us to connect companies and universities to collaborate on projects and we provide support with bid writing to access finance for large-scale collaborative R&D programmes.

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