The future of combat aviation

The Phase 1B call for technology innovation proposals is part of the FCAS (Future Combat Air System) program.
The FCAS initiative is a project led by three European nations (France, Germany, Spain and Belgium) to develop the next generation of combat aircraft and associated technologies. Thales, a leading partner in the FCAS program, actively seeks innovative solutions to evolving defence and security challenges through this 8-month call for partners.

Thales' stakes
in the FCAS

Collaborating with the French ecosystem

Phase 1B aims to foster collaboration with a diverse ecosystem of French startups, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and research organizations already involved in the exploration, use or production of emerging technologies. Thales seeks to contribute to the development of these technologies by actively engaging with the French ecosystem and leveraging its expertise and innovation capabilities.

Developing the Networked Sensor Suite

The Networked Sensor Suite (NSDAS) is a suite of interconnected sensors, designed to improve the collection, processing and exploitation of data from various sensors, such as radars, early warning systems, etc. Thales goal is to create an ecosystem of connected sensors that enable greater monitoring and understanding of the operational environment, contributing to more informed decision-making and improved reactivity and efficiency of operations.

Implementing Combat Cloud

Implementing the Combat Cloud is one of Thales technological challenges for the FCAS. The aim is to create an interconnected combat environment, where platforms and operational forces can share information in real time, collaborate more effectively and make strategic decisions based on up-to-date data.

Deploying future sensors

Thales also intends to explore and develop emerging technologies for future sensors. This includes the use of new detection, data processing and analysis methods, the integration of miniaturized and lightweight sensors, improving the performance of existing sensors, as well as exploring new surveillance and detection capabilities. The aim is to remain at the forefront of technological innovation in the field of sensors, and to guarantee greater operational superiority for defence forces.

Collaboration process

Step 1

Discovering subjects

In the Challenge section under the FCAS tab, discover 10 challenges from 5 different themes on which Thales would like to collaborate with external partners as part of the FCAS program. The description of the challenges are available upon identification, to access them, please fill in a contact form.
Once your access has been validated, you will receive a password within 48 hours, enabling you to study the challenges and associated timetable in detail. If your solution can meet the requirements of one or more of these challenges, submit a synthetic application for each one.

Step 2

Assessment of applications

Applications will be carefully evaluated by in-house experts at Thales, in collaboration with the DGA (Direction Générale de l'Armement). Following this evaluation, a list of challenges selected and the shortlisted candidates for each will be announced.

Step 3

Detailed information and preparation of the final application

For each shortlisted candidate, a detailed selection kit will be provided, including in-depth information on the challenges. This kit will enable candidates to present their approach, financial planning and ability to meet the project's specific technical requirements in greater detail. Candidates should demonstrate their in-depth understanding of the project and their ability to carry it out effectively.

Step 4

Partner selection and contractualization

The final evaluation of each application will be carried out in consultation with the DGA, in order to select a final partner for each challenge. This in-depth evaluation will take into account criteria such as the relevance of the proposal, technical expertise, project feasibility, proposed budget and the applicant's ability to meet the specific requirements of the project. Once the evaluation has been completed, a final partner will be chosen for each challenge, and in the weeks following the selection of partners, the contract for each project will be drawn up. This crucial step will formalize the terms and conditions of the collaboration between Thales, DGA and the selected partners. These projects cover a period of 6 to 18 months. Details such as contractual obligations, responsibilities, deadlines and funding terms will be defined as part of this contractualization process.

Fair selection process

Thales is committed to promoting fairness and inclusion in the selection process by offering equal opportunities to a wide range of innovative entities, including SMEs, laboratories, startups and other relevant organizations.

Discover the challenges (French only)
Learn more and apply