hero image

ORE Catapult appoints aerospace innovator as Technical Director

Published 16 November 2021

The Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, the UK’s leading research and innovation centre for offshore wind, wave and tidal energy, has appointed one of the aerospace industry’s thought leaders, Dr Cristina Garcia-Duffy, as Technical Director and a member of its Executive Management Team. Working with colleagues across the business, she will lead the strategic development of the Catapult’s technical capabilities and new areas of innovation, taking up the role in February 2022.

Commenting on the appointment, ORE Catapult Chief Executive Andrew Jamieson said:

“The UK’s commitment to achieving Net Zero whilst delivering a green economic recovery demands a relentless drive for technology innovation. We are excited to have Cristina join us at such a critical time as we continue to deliver extensive UK economic growth and employment from our world-leading renewables industries. Cristina’s extensive experience working at the forefront of the aerospace industry will bring new insight and fresh thinking to ORE Catapult, supporting our teams in the delivery of world-class engineering, and to our industry and academic partners as we collaboratively develop the next generation of renewable energy technologies.”

Dr Cristina Garcia-Duffy said:

“The need for clean energy has never been greater. The offshore renewable market is set to undergo unprecedented growth in the next decade, and for the UK to hold a leading position will require the sector to work together with a shared vision. I see ORE Catapult as an essential enabler in that effort – delivering on world-leading research programmes and continuing to grow best-in-kind capabilities for our clients. I am thrilled to be joining at such a vibrant time and I look forward to working with the Catapult team to help make our vision happen.”

Cristina is currently Head of Technology – Sustainability & Strategy at the Aerospace Technology Institute. She previously held various management positions within the research and technology department at Leonardo Helicopters (previously known as AgustaWestland), and before this had research and teaching positions at two universities in the USA. She holds a PhD in Aerospace Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis, USA and an MSc and BSc with honours from Saint Louis University, USA.

Dr Cristina Garcia-Duffy

Cristina Garcia-Duffy is currently Head of Technology at the UK Aerospace Technology Institute with accountability for the sustainability strategy, bringing together UK industry and government to address the environmental impact of the aviation industry. This includes the development of international relationships to progress towards zero net carbon aviation. Cristina also leads the development of the UK National Aerospace Technology Strategy, which determines the priorities for government investment in aerospace research & technology (in the order of £150M per annum).

Prior to joining the ATI in 2014, Cristina held management positions at Leonardo Helicopters including responsibility for the Company’s UK Advanced Rotorcraft Centres. She was also in the leadership team of Project Zero, which delivered the world’s first electric autonomous tilt-rotor demonstrator aircraft. The team and aircraft have been recognised with various international awards since 2012.

Cristina holds a PhD in Aerospace Engineering from Washington University in St. Louis and an MSc and BSc in Aerospace Engineering from Saint Louis University, both in the USA.