Metropolregion Hamburg

Leading-Edge Cluster

The players in Hamburg Aviation form a powerful alliance of business, science and politics. Together, they launch initiatives and projects, for example in the research field and in securing a long-term supply of specialist personnel.

Their goals: to network the companies, organisations and institutions of Hamburg Aviation, to promote the development of specialist personnel, to expand knowledge transfer, and to improve the commercial and economic environment. A further aim is to identify and fill gaps in the process chain, to produce innovations and to open up new areas of competency.

The founding members reflect the variety of the cluster: Airbus, Lufthansa Technik, Flughafen Hamburg, the associations Hanse-Aerospace, HECAS and BDLI, the institutes and research facilities DLR, HCAT and ZAL and Hamburg’s four universities – Hamburg University of Applied Sciences (HAW Hamburg), Hamburg University of Technology (TUHH), Helmut Schmidt University (HSU) and the University of Hamburg. The Hamburg Business Development Corporation (HWF) and the Ministry of Economy, Transport and Innovation (BWVI) have also been members from the very beginning. There are also numerous sponsoring members.

Together, all of these members form the Hamburg Aviation Network. In the Hamburg Aviation Board, members work together to further develop the Cluster’s strategy. The central office of the Cluster operates as Hamburg Aviation Services and ensures the implementation of programmes and measures that have been adopted.

Working together for a new kind of aviation

Together the players in Hamburg Aviation pursue a common goal: to network research and development, thereby bringing to market high-quality products and services for the aviation of the future – products that are good for passengers and set the standards in terms of resource protection.

Becoming a Leading-Edge Cluster with the strategy, “A New Kind of Aviation” – the product areas 

For this purpose, they developed the strategy, “A New Kind of Aviation”. This strategy is designed to make flying in the future more economical, more ecological, more comfortable, more flexible and more reliable. To achieve this, the players in Hamburg Aviation concentrate on four product areas:

  • the development and construction of aircraft and aircraft systems
  • the development and construction of cabins and cabin systems
  • the optimisation of aviation services
  • and improving the efficiency of the air transportation system.

The strategy is convincing: in September 2008 the aviation cluster, along with four other clusters, succeeded in a field of 38 entrants in the non-industry specific Leading-Edge Cluster competition organised by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), winning the title of Leading-Edge Cluster. Numerous research and development projects, representing more than 80 million euros worth of investment, are being jointly financed, half-half, by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the companies within the cluster.

For more information about the research projects and innovations in the four product areas, visit our Research Database!

Hamburg Aviation’s successes

Today’s cluster, Hamburg Aviation, was born in 2001 as the Hamburg Aviation Initiative. Many things have been achieved since then:

  • In 2002, for the first time, Hamburg hosted the Aircraft Interiors Expo, the world’s largest trade fair for aircraft interior design.
  • In 2007, the famous Crystal Cabin Award for outstanding design was presented as part of the Aircraft Interiors Expo.
  • In 2008, Hamburg Aviation won the Leading-Edge Cluster competition organised by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, benefiting from wide-ranging research support.
  • In 2009, the Center of Applied Aeronautical Research (ZAL) and the Hamburg Centre of Aviation Training (HCAT) were founded, two institutions that secure Hamburg’s number one position in research and teaching.