Wallonia Aero

Welcome to Wallonia Aero,
the access portal for the aeronautics industry in Wallonia (Belgium)


The success of the aeronautics and space sectors in Wallonia is rooted in the industrial history of the region. Walloon firms in the aeronautics and space industries directly originate from the prestigious Walloon metallurgical industry and have become companies of international renown.

Key figures

Skywin, the aeronautics and space Cluster in Wallonia, currently represents some 7,500 direct jobs and a turnover of 1.75 billion euros, 90% of which is exported.

Civil aeronautics

With around 100 active companies, actively supported by research centres and universities, the Walloon aeronautics sector represents more than 70% of the aeronautical activity in Belgium, more than 5,500 direct jobs with an estimated turnover of 1.35 billion euros.

Among the major Walloon firms are world leaders who supply most of the civil aircrafts that are in service today. The aeronautics sector alone supplies 5% of the equipment in the Airbus range, while also supplying Boeing, Bombardier, Embraer, etc.


Plane Takeoff
Direct jobs
> 5 500
1.35 billion euros


Activities (Innovation & Production)
Structures (metallic and composite) / Aircraft engines / Engine test benches / Simulation and assisted design / Onboard electronic and electrical systems / Embeded Software / Hydraulic Systems / Maintenance & Repair (MRO) / Training

This sector brings together large companies that are recognised worldwide, such as:

  • Sonaca, world leader in the leading edges of wings;
  • Safran Aero Boosters, world leader in low pressure compressors;
  • Sabca, for structures and maintenance;
  • Thales Belgium, for on-board communication systems.

It also includes an extremely dynamic network of SMEs that are an integral part of the global supply chain, sometimes as Tier1.

Research Excellence

As part of collaborative research projects, the Skywin cluster works in close collaboration with the Research Centres of Wallonia, the LiEU Network (Business-University Liaison) and SynHERA (research contact for University Colleges).

Walloon aeronautics rallies towards “green” aviation

At the end of 2020, nineteen Walloon companies joined forces to research the ecological and digital transition of the aeronautics sector with the aim of fully contributing to the EU’s “Green Deal”. The aim is to bring their expertise in the ambitious EU project to bring a low-carbon aircraft into service in 2035 and a carbon-free aircraft in 2050.

The Walloon aeronautics sector is resolutely focusing on the future and is developing technological leadership in the field of lightweight structures and engine efficiency, while participating in the european dynamic aiming for aircraft hybridisation and the use of new types of fuels.

Jacques Smal, President of Skywin

Safran Aero Boosters, Sonaca and Thales Belgium collaborate on various research themes with a panel of SMEs and research centres that are active in the aeronautics industry. The research is structured around six target themes:

  • Aero-structure;
  • Propulsion;
  • Communications systems;
  • Materials and processes;
  • Digitalisation and digital simulation;
  • Industry 4.0.

    All details here : www.wingspartnership.be

The Wings project is a new opportunity for the Walloon aeronautics sector to be at the forefront of a European aeronautics industry that is resolutely focused on the future and enhanced respect of the environment.

Etienne Pourbaix, Director of Skywin.
Video file
Presentation of the WINGS R&D initiative


Click here to find out more about the expertise of the aeronautics companies member of the Skywin Cluster.