Key aerospace role for airport

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Newquay Cornwall Airport is set to play a key role in the development of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS), it was announced today.

Newquay Airport, along with West Wales Airport, will be home to the world’s first civilian centre for operating UAS.

The National Aeronautical Centre (NAC) will enable the UK to capitalise on what is recognised by the global aerospace community as one of the world’s major economic growth opportunities.

The NAC will be open to civilian and military contractors and operators, and will enable the development and training of UAS that can fly beyond visual line of sight.

Commenting on the launch, Ray Mann, head of the NAC, said: “This is an opportunity for the UK to lead the way. Together, West Wales Airport and Newquay Cornwall Airport are committed to being at the forefront of developments in this sector and we hope our vision will deliver rewards.

“We need to ensure that some current perceptions of civilian use of UAS don’t hinder the UK’s ability to capitalise on this exciting opportunity for economic growth.”

Al Titterington, MD of Newquay Cornwall Airport, added: “The global aerospace market is forecast to be worth four trillion dollars (US) by 2030, yet the UK is currently forecast to see just 10% of this investment.

“The UK aerospace industry has a major opportunity in the UAS market but first it must develop, demonstrate and prove that systems and sub-systems can contribute to ensuring safe and reliable operations, whilst being properly regulated.

“The creation of the NAC has given the UK a world unique, national asset, where the development of new aerospace technologies, in the form of UAS, is now being undertaken. We are excited about announcing this launch in partnership with West Wales Airport.”