Air Chief Marshal confirms interest in AERALIS modular air system approach

23 February 2024

As we flagged at the start of the week, The Defence Select Committee met again yesterday to hear further evidence in the inquiry into Future Aviation Capabilities.

Of particular note in yesterday’s hearing was the statement made by Air Chief Marshal Sir Richard Knighton KCB, Chief of the Air Staff, which mentioned AERALIS: “Tristan (Crawford, AERALIS CEO) and the (AERALIS) team’s model of a modular system that would enable you to deliver capability for a number of different scenarios is something that we’re very interested in.”

Hawk’s retirement in 2040 is building a sense of urgency with the RAF as they look to address not only GCAP training but also Surrogacy and Red Air. Sir Richard Knighton continued: “What I’d like to do is bring that capability investigation to a conclusion before we get into the next Spending Review and Defence Review because that would be the point at which we would need to establish a programme.

“2040 is only 16 years away, so we would need to have our evidence gathered and developed and for us to be in a position to make a case for investment as we go through the next Spending Review and next Defence Review.”

The next Spending and Defence Reviews are scheduled for 2025 and we look forward to supporting the RAF as they move forward with their investigation.