"The Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) cannot do without NLR when it comes to support in the development and application of expertise"

Close cooperation for an effective Air Force

There are close ties between the Royal Netherlands Air Force and NLR. We cooperate intensively in many areas and there is a great deal of formal and informal interaction. One example is the Knowledge and Innovation Plan of the Royal Netherlands Air Force Command (CLSK), in which NLR participates as a knowledge partner. What is our role and what expertise will the Air Force require in future? And how are we going to develop it? CLSK is answering these questions together with NLR. Multiple organisations are contributing to this strategic plan, but NLR is the only partner involved in the entire process.

The Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) cannot do without NLR when it comes to support in the development and application of expertise. NLR's greatest strength is its application-driven approach, or rather the practical applicability of NLR expertise, which closely coincides with the needs of the RNLAF in the shorter as well as the longer term. This is borne out by the knowledge development programme 'Operational Deployment and Weapon Systems Performance' (OIW) that aims to improve the operational efficacy of our weapon systems.

This close cooperation is also in evidence in our Aerospace Cluster, where the RNLAF cooperates with industry (Fokker and Airbus Defence and Space Netherlands; ADSN) and knowledge institutes (NLR). This Golden Triangle jointly applies high-grade technology and innovative power to ensure an advanced and effective air force. This partnership was initiated in April 2014 and five projects have already been launched. One of these relates to Competence Sharing, with a view to developing and mobilising knowledge, talent and leadership through further integration of education and training where possible. The first results are reflect in the mutual sharing of vacancies at ADSN, Fokker, the Netherlands Defence Force and NLR.

The Netherlands Defence Force aims to continually improve the efficiency and efficacy of its operational assets. For instance in the testing of new weapon systems or the effective utilisation of special sensors that measure the exact limits of our aircraft in terms of deployment and maintenance. But this also extends to multiple other areas ranging from research into crack formation in aircraft fuselages to training and simulation technology. NLR's contribution is indispensable in ensuring an effective and deployable Air Force.

Colonel Robert Adang | Colonel at Royal Netherlands Air Force