QinetiQ, BMT and Aurora Partners Atkins have received an engineering services contract to support the UK Ministry of Defence’s (MoD) Future Combat Air Systems (FCAS) programme.

The £31m contract has been awarded by the MoD’s procurement arm Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S).

The three-year contract will be delivered through QinetiQ, Atkins, and BMT, collectively called Aurora Engineering Delivery Partnership (EDP).

It involves the three companies, along with other sub-contractors in the EDP provider network, to deliver technical support for the FCAS programme.

QinetiQ’s subsidiary Inzpire will also deliver management expertise for this work.

The engineering support to be provided under this contract mainly focuses on human performance, safety and systems engineering disciplines.

Work will be supported by the DE&S Catalyst delivery team, which also provides the latest combat air capabilities to British frontline commands.

It is expected to generate and sustain around 45 jobs across the country in Farnborough, Boscombe Down, Bristol, Lincoln, Bath and Malvern.

QinetiQ UK Defence chief executive Nic Anderson said: “Our work with Catalyst DT will help accelerate new ways of working using digital engineering methodologies in supporting the next generation of combat air platforms.”

Also known as Tempest, the FCAS programme was launched in 2018 to replace the Royal Air Force’s existing fleet of Typhoon aircraft.

In 2021, BAE Systems received a contract for the design and development of Tempest and the associated industry partners are currently working to develop a flying demonstrator.

DE&S FCAS portfolio deputy head catalyst and chief engineer group captain Mark Butterworth said: “This was a fantastic opportunity to further reinforce the highly skilled DE&S engineering workforce with individuals who possess an in-depth and invaluable level of knowledge and expertise in specific technical areas.”