CapTech Materials & Structures

Jun 27, 2017

Type of activity: CapTech
Participating Countries: All
Other partners: n/a

The CapTech Materials & Structures main objective is to support the European armed forces on current and future challenges within these areas of research, in close collaboration with the other EDA CapTechs and other international institutions (e.g. European Space Agency (ESA)) and organisations (e.g. NATO).

The CapTech Materials & Structures (Materials CapTech in short) covers underpinning technologies on structures and materials. Although there is no generally accepted definition of engineering materials, the Materials CapTech has selected the following material categories as being relevant:

  • Signature materials (to deny the enemy detection and identification);
  • Energy (specifically batteries, more generally energy harvesting);
  • Replacement (to substitute for obsolete/no longer available materials) [Note: previously called obsolescence];
  • Structural materials;
  • Blue sky (emerging materials too immature to naturally place into other categories);
  • Manufacturing technology;
  • Non-destructive testing;
  • In-service performance;
  • REACH compliance;
  • Surface treatments;
  • Modelling;
  • Protection (armour)

The work of Materials CapTech is generally of TRL in the ranges of 2 to 4, although work in higher TRLs is not ruled out. CapTech Materials & Structures projects aim to develop technology on materials and structures, production processes, test procedures and solutions that are applicable in one or more of the four defined key areas. The work of the CapTech is technology pushed, but also Capability Driven, mainly by the CDP (Capability Development Plan), and the CDP Priorities valid at a moment in time.

The need for detailed knowledge about materials, provided by Materials CapTech, is relevant for several of the “system” CapTechs. Vice versa, knowledge of system performance and capability requirements is crucial for Materials CapTech to identify future needs and requirements. There is, hence, a close relationship between Materials CapTech and the other CapTechs.


Way of working

The Materials CapTech meetings are held 3 times per year, with a maximum duration of 2 days. All the information is shared in its Workspace. Prior or right after a CapTech meeting, a workshop or seminar might take place. The Workshops objectives are to achieve concrete outcomes, such as the preparation of a project or fulfilment of an extraordinary request (topics for calls for proposals, SRA development, technology assessment, etc.) The workshops are “hands-on” and participative. On the other hand, the seminars objective is to raise the awareness and knowledge about an specific technology identified in the CapTech, and gain insight on the potential of that technology for defence applications. Subject matter experts will be invited as speakers.

To become a Materials CapTech member (CGE or CnGE), please follow the instructions included in the R&T General site, and be aware that your request will be forwarded to the relevant CNC. The approval of the CNC will be needed to become a CGE or CnGE, and also for your participation in a CapTech event.

The activities of the CapTech Materials & Structures are guided by the Materials CapTech Strategic Research Agenda (SRA). The CapTech on Materials & Structures Technologies started by identifying a number of technology gaps and attempts to prioritise these in a way which will stimulate multilateral R&T collaboration, bearing in mind possible synergies with organisations including ESA, NATO and EC programmes. The agreed way ahead was through clustering by domain around programmes to allow a more focused approach. From there, technology gaps would be established and those translated into a technology roadmap. Four key areas or domains have been defined: (1) air systems, (2) naval systems, (3) land systems (including soldier systems), and (4) cross-cutting technologies. It also has been expanded to include the area of critical defence technologies. A total of 24 areas for future work are identified, 5 in the Air system domain; 6 in the Naval system domain;4 in the Land system domain; and 9 in the Cross-cutting domain. These 24 areas have been merged in 9 Technology Building Blocks (TBBs), following the Overarching Strategic Research Agenda Methodology (OSRA).

Based on the SRA, any CapTech member can propose ideas for new activities (projects, workshops, seminars, etc.) at any meeting. The ideas are collected and, if not immediately detailed with clear expression of interest, it is the role of the moderator to persist and revisit what remains to then re-launch or definitively ‘kill’ and idea.The active involvement of non-governmental members in proposing solutions for governmental needs, with a consistent and systematic ground for dialogue can definitely encourage cooperation.


Materials CapTech Portfolio:


Other activities:


Participating Member States

  • Belgium
  • Bulgaria
  • Czech
  • Germany
  • Estonia
  • Ireland
  • Greece
  • Spain
  • France
  • Croatia
  • Italy
  • Cyprus
  • Latvia
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Hungary
  • Malta
  • Netherlands
  • Austria
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Romania
  • Slovenia
  • Slovakia
  • Finland
  • Sweden
  • UK