Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD)

NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD) performs fundamental research in aeronautics and leading-edge fields to support future air and space vehicles and better the nation’s air transportation systems. While the directorate focuses research efforts on NASA-related issues, they also research issues pertinent to civilian and commercial air travel. In addition, ARMD works to advance the fundamental understanding of key aeronautics disciplines. The ARMD designs, develops, and tests advanced technologies, with the goal of making aviation more environmentally friendly, maintaining safety in crowded skies, and transforming the way we fly and use aircraft.[1]

The research supported by the Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate is primarily conducted at four NASA centers:

  • Ames Research Center
  • Armstrong Flight Research Center
  • Glenn Research Center
  • Langley Research Center[2]

NASA’s aeronautics program is organized around six areas of research that aim to provide solutions to major challenges and opportunities for aviation. The major challenges facing aviation include a growing demand for mobility, the sustainability of energy and the environment, and technology advances in information, communications and automation.[3] The six focus areas at the core of NASA’s aeronautics program include the following:

  • Safe, efficient growth in global operations
  • Innovation in commercial supersonic aircraft
  • Ultra-efficient commercial vehicles
  • Transition to low-carbon propulsion
  • In-time system-wide safety assurance
  • Assured autonomy for aviation transformation[4]

Specific programs being supported and managed by the ARMD include:

Key documents and resources for the ARMD include the ARMD Strategic Implementation Plan, the Aeronautics Technology Roadmap, and the 2020 NASA Technology Taxonomy.

Updated November 2020 by Kristen Johnson