in Defence

RAF Air Cadet names AERALIS’ first test aircraft

Posted 8 November 2023

A judging panel has selected the name 'Phoenix' for AERALIS' first test aircraft from over 800 names submitted in a competition conducted with the RAF’s Air Cadets, called Mission 001.

Image courtesy AERALIS

The panel, consisting of senior AERALIS employees and RAF representatives including Air Vice-Marshal Simon Edwards, RAF Director People, and Air Commodore Tony Keeling, Commandant RAF Air Cadets, met last week to sift through over 800 names submitted by Air Cadets to pick their favourite. After hours of deliberation, the judges selected the name which most represented the spirit and ambition of the first AERALIS aircraft.

The winner was a Cadet from Dawlish in Devon. In line with competition rules, he was picked at random from the 15 cadets who suggested the name Phoenix.

He will receive a range of exciting prizes including a tour around the AERALIS facility to talk with key members of the business to help grow his understanding of the AERALIS project and the modern methods of aircraft design and manufacture. The 14 runners-up will also receive AERALIS prizes.

The announcement today on National STEM Day highlights the business’ aim to inspire young people into engineering. AERALIS has been closely engaged with the Air Cadets over the past year, attending their National Air and Space Camp to talk with young aviation enthusiasts about the future of British aerospace design and manufacture.

Following the conclusion of Mission 001, AERALIS will continue to work with the Air Cadets to launch further competitions, keeping the future aviation talent of tomorrow engaged with the next generation of British aviation.

AERALIS’s founder & CEO Tristan Crawford commented: “A huge thank you to all the Air Cadets who took part in the competition and submitted names for the aircraft, the judging panel were highly impressed with the quality of names and the thought that went into them. Phoenix is a superb name for our first test aircraft, and we look forward to welcoming the winner to our facility in Bristol.”

Commandant of the Air Cadets, Air Commodore Tony Keeling, said: “It was amazing to have AERALIS launch Mission 001 at our National Air and Space Camp and I’m delighted with the response to the naming competition. Over 800 Air Cadets submitted their ideas to name the first test aircraft, and I was very impressed by the broad range of names and the reasons why it should be chosen. My thanks to AERALIS for providing such an imaginative way to engage the next generation, and to our Air Cadets for their collective brilliance.”

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