Mapping the risks of future flight.
To validate the outputs, we created a working group of 15 industry experts from across the aviation landscape.
We also identified a set of transversal themes which will have a significant impact on future aviation safety.
Theme 1: Predicting risks in a complex system
Accurate predictive quantitative safety analysis is challenging in a complex system like aviation. It will become even more challenging in the future.
This is an emerging area of expertise that our study partners from the University of York have been developing alongside the Royal Academy of Engineering and the Lloyds Register Foundation.
Theme 2. Managing safety across multiple operations
When new future flight providers join the aviation system, they will need to understand the multiple ways their operations could impact aviation safety.
This is because, with so many participants in the system, safety objectives within one organisation can contradict those of another if they’re not well managed.
As part of this theme, we took a broader look at the different risk outcomes (eg safety, security, environment) and how to manage them in a more integrated fashion.
Theme 3. How humans and AI will work together
As flight becomes more autonomous, artificial intelligence and machine learning will change the role of the human in operations.
People will oversee autonomous systems in their organisation and also interact with external autonomous systems. We need ways of adapting to this. We also need to ensure that autonomous systems can maintain control and safely resolve situations under all failure modes.
Theme 4. Supporting physical and digital infrastructure
Physical and digital infrastructure will need to evolve to meet the FF operations and be resilient to cybersecurity threats.
In the scenarios we looked at, new ‘vertiports’ and charging infrastructures that would be needed to accommodate new aircraft.
The main challenge here is managing safety implications across such a diverse system of users, equipment and infrastructure sharing the same airspace.