GCAP: Developing the
future of combat air

Since 2012, Leonardo has been working as part of a UK national enterprise approach to develop the country’s future combat air system capability. During the intervening period, significant advances have been made, including the formation in 2018 of the UK-based Team Tempest industry/(Ministry of Defence (MOD) group, and the establishment of the UK-Japan-Italy Global Combat Air Programme (GCAP) in 2022.

Focusing on the development of advanced defence electronics, Leonardo is a founding partner of Team Tempest, alongside the UK MOD, BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce and MBDA UK. The team has been working at pace to develop the technologies and capabilities necessary to see a new combat air system go into service in 2035. In July 2021, the UK MOD awarded Team Tempest a further contract worth approximately £250m to progress the development of the future capability. As the UK’s defence electronics champion, Leonardo is leading the nation’s development of the Integrated Sensing and Non-Kinetic Effects (ISANKE) and Integrated Communications Systems (ICS) technology for the next generation system. Leonardo is also implementing cyber resilience across the Tempest ecosystem, which will be critical to enabling Tempest to maximise the potential of this technological innovation.

In December 2022, it was announced that the UK’s sovereign industry partners – through Team Tempest – will support the significant endeavour of the UK, Japan and Italy building a truly international programme, with a shared ambition to develop a next generation fighter aircraft under a new Global Combat Air Programme (GCAP).

Learn more about the active role Leonardo is playing in defining the future capability that will help ensure that the UK remains a world-leader in the combat air sector.

We're looking to attract and develop the next generation of world-leading suitably qualified and experienced personnel to work on Tempest and help deliver the UK’s Future Combat Air System capability.

Leonardo plays a central role in combat air programmes, developing advanced sensing and effecting technologies that will continue benefiting air platforms currently in service, as well as future crewed and uncrewed aircraft for many decades to come.

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