Research & development Jul 21, 2015

Flying high: Bavaria's aerospace industry is a leader in Europe

The Bavarian aerospace industry enjoys an excellent reputation around the world. The State of Bavaria is not only the home to global players such as Airbus or MTU, it is also the home to the headquarters of the Deutsche Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (the national aeronautics and space research centre of the Federal Republic of Germany), numerous research institutions and many SMEs.

The small and medium-sized enterprises constitute the majority of the nearly 550 Bavarian aerospace companies, which cover virtually the entire real net output ratio – from basic research to marketing. The sector employs more than 60,000 people in Bavaria. The turnover generated annually in the processing industry totals approx. EUR 7 billion.

The strong presence of the aerospace industry is of course a direct result of Bavaria's research landscape which is second to none in Europe. Thus, Bavaria is home to numerous universities, universities of applied science and major research institutions such as the Deutsche Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt (DLR) or institutes from the Fraunhofer Gesellschaft and Max Planck Society which are active in aerospace research and teaching.

Researching, teaching and founding

This high density of companies and research institutes have propelled Bavaria into the leading aerospace region in Europe. The Ludwig Bölkow-Campus in Ottobrunn was founded nearly two years ago to promote synergies between science and industry, initiate projects and bring products to market. The campus, whose stakeholders include Bauhaus Luftfahrt, DLR, TU München, University of Applied Sciences Munich, Universität der Bundeswehr München as well as Airbus, IABG and Siemens, explicitly sees itself as an innovation platform and starting point for interdisciplinary cooperations. The close proximity of industrial companies, research institutions and training facilities creates an environment composed of creativity and entrepreneurial spirit which play a major role in securing Bavaria's leading position in aerospace technology over the long term. The campus not only focuses on tasks including the promotion of top-class research and the targeted networking of science and business, but also on turning research results into market-ready products. This is done, on the one hand, by establishing start-ups and, on the other hand, through the targeted relocation of new high-tech companies and spin-offs from the future aerospace market.

Rocket science for everyday use

Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the European Space Agency (ESA) has now also opened a Business Incubation Centre (BIC) in Ottobrunn. Ottobrunn is now the fourth ESA centre of its kind in Bavaria joining the existing sites in Nuremberg, Oberpfaffenhofen and Berchtesgadener Land. The BICs are points of contact for entrepreneurs who can take advantage of the existing infrastructure to make their business ideas come to life. In doing so, BICs primarily focus on applications and innovations that make space technologies usable in everyday, practical applications or products. The application scenarios are varied and range from satellite navigation and robotics to medical technology.

Do you want to find out more about the opportunities and possibilities available in Bavaria's aerospace sector? Get in touch – we will be happy to tell you more!


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