By: Louis Travieso
If life imitates art, one may view the 2022 success of Top Gun: Maverick as a harbinger of the aerospace and defense (A&D) industry’s economic rebound in 2023.
Employment and other key indicators within the A&D sector returned to pre-pandemic levels during the period, generating momentum that remains strong as a new year approaches.1 However, optimism for the next 12 months will be tempered by ongoing talent shortages, economic uncertainty, continued supply chain challenges and growing security risks.
With no high-flying Hollywood movies on the horizon to generate excitement, here are five key trends to watch—and how to prepare for them—as the A&D industry prepares to soar in 2024:
1. Digital twin and digital thread technologies will accelerate
Digital twin and digital thread technologies will play a critical role in the sector’s continued technology evolution. Using digital replicas of products or systems, digital twins simulate situations and outcomes so you can understand how they’ll perform in real life.2 Insights generated by digital twins enable faster iteration and optimization of product designs, speeding time to market.
Digital threads, on the other hand, provide digital representations of a product’s entire lifecycle, from design and production to implementation and maintenance.3 By providing a complete and transparent view of manufacturing systems, teams can collaborate more efficiently and make better decisions throughout the production process.
How to prepare: Develop a comprehensive digital transformation strategy that includes guidelines for measuring progress and meeting governance requirements. Decommissioning outdated infrastructure, optimizing your technology ecosystem and unlocking data in support of your business should be key elements of your plan.