News Releases

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Jerry Moran (R-Kan.) and Mark R. Warner (D-Va.) – co-chairs of the Senate Aerospace Caucus – re-introduced S.1713, Aeronautics Innovation Act, to help boost innovation, research and development in the aeronautics industry. The bill would provide a five-year funding commitment to advance innovation and supplement research in the field.

In 2017, the U.S. aerospace and defense industry produced approximately 2.4 million jobs and generated $865 billion in economic output. However, without the proper strategy and investment, the U.S. risks falling behind other industrialized nations in developing and advancing the next generation of aircraft. Forecasts estimate that the world’s demand for passenger aircraft fleet above 100 seats will double over the next 20 years, generating new plane orders between 35,000 and 40,000 worth more than $5 trillion by 2035.

“The future of our aerospace industry depends on our commitment today in aviation research, testing and manufacturing,” said Sen. Moran. “As the Air Capital of the World, Kansas continues to play a prominent role in the national aerospace industry and for generations has been a leader in propelling the industry forward. Across the country – with the proper resources and the ability to continue attracting a strong workforce – the industry is poised to make groundbreaking discoveries, perfect new technology and build better and more efficient aircraft. The investment that can be made by passing this legislation will make certain that our successes can continue into the next generation.”

“In order for the U.S. to boost its competitive edge in aeronautics, Congress must enact policies that invest in long-term research and development,” said Sen. Warner. “With countries across the globe looking to profit from record demand in the coming years for commercial aircraft, competition is fierce to lead the way in developing next-generation technology. This bill lays out a blueprint for how the U.S. can lead the world in a new age of manufacturing, where we can build the safest, quietest, most-fuel efficient and environmentally friendly planes available. Virginia is home to a thriving aerospace industry with leading federal facilities such as NASA Langley, and this bill will continue to support the nation’s next-generation capabilities in this important industry.”

“We applaud Sen. Moran and Sen. Warner for introducing the Aeronautics Innovation Act and for supporting efforts of the aerospace industry to design and certify the next generation of aircraft,” said Spirit AeroSystems President and CEO Tom Gentile. “Spirit supports further collaboration between industry, NASA and other federal stakeholders. We look forward to participating in this new program.”

American industry leads the world, but we can’t maintain our competitive edge without government’s investments in science and research to feed into our innovation pipeline,” said Aerospace Industries Association President and CEO Eric Fanning. “The Aeronautics Innovation Act will provide important continuity and budget stability for aeronautics research, which helps boost our economy and strengthen our national security. We applaud Senators Warner and Moran for championing this legislation and look forward to continuing to work together to assure American technological superiority in air and space.”

“We applaud Senators Moran and Warner for introducing this bill, which supports critical innovations and recognizes the importance of aviation manufacturing in the U.S., an industry that creates over 500,000 jobs and produces over $342 billion in economic activity,” said General Aviation Manufacturers Association President and CEO Pete Bunce. “This legislation will support research in new sectors of the industry, including electric propulsion, simplified air vehicle operation and increased vertical takeoffs and landings, as well as research efforts on unmanned aircraft systems and supersonic flight. These rapidly developing initiatives will allow for safer and more efficient aviation products, provide more high-quality engineering and manufacturing jobs, further contribute to the economy and keep the U.S. competitive in the global aviation market.”

This legislation is endorsed by the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI), the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA), Spirit AeroSystems and the National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) at Wichita State University.