The aerospace industry has always been a source of innovation, whether it’s technical developments that later make it into the hands of consumers or proactive responses to economic trends that will soon be felt by the rest of the world. Here are a few things to look forward to in the coming years:
The Power of Data
Big Data is having a growing influence on the aviation industry, informing the way businesses interact with their customers and customers’ expectations of the businesses with which they interact. Analytics allow manufacturers to better manage resources and decrease time to market, and allow airlines to better understand customers and predict their behavior. Consumers, on the other hand, have become accustomed to sites and apps that can find them the best travel dates, ticket prices and even seats with the click of a button, and they expect nothing less than perfect service from the companies with which they interact.
Use of carbon fiber and composites in aerospace has been on the rise as a lightweight — and thus more fuel-efficient — alternative to metals like steel and iron. Most of that rise has been in widebody jets, though — production rates and material costs have reduced the cost benefit of composites in narrow-body aircraft. But the passage of time has started to shift popular opinion. Manufacturers are beginning to see significant savings in maintenance and replacement costs for carbon fiber components, making it far more appealing to expand adoption across the entire fleet.