Delta is creating a collaborative research center at The Georgia Institute of Technology where the airline, through a $2 million grant, is funding projects to enhance its operations and the customer experience.
Delta is seen as an innovator in the aviation industry. A commitment to constant improvement has driven the company’s success, leading to accolades such as being named to Fortune magazine's list of the 50 Most Admired Companies. This space enhances Delta’s 86-year commitment to industry-leading firsts, like pioneering the use of a hub and spoke system in 1955, being the first U.S. airline with motion graphic maps in the cabin showing the aircraft’s position and route in 1992 and launching the first mobile baggage tracking app in 2011.
“At Delta we are continuously seeking to improve and elevate our operations and the customer experience,” said Gil West, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Delta (right). “This facility is the first of its kind for the domestic aviation industry. Tapping into the bright minds at Georgia Tech is an opportunity to gain new perspectives and approaches across Delta for changes that will advance our business now and for years to come.”
The collaborative space is designed to promote business enhancements and innovation through research that centers on the way people and products interact. The facility provides:
- Co-development and collaboration with Delta business and technology teams, Georgia Tech research staff and students from various colleges within the university.
- Delta-led project development with the ability to vet concepts and ideas to understand business impact and value, assessing feasibility in the work environment.
- Dedicated space for experimenting in a safe framework away from the operation to facilitate evaluating, envisioning and prototyping in a quick, iterative manner.
- Immersive opportunities to share a holistic view of Delta’s business operations with top-tier talent looking for collaborative, challenging work environments.
Already in development, the research facility began taking shape when Delta secured a five-year lease for the 6,500 square foot space at 75 Fifth St. in Atlanta’s Midtown district. The airline is enhancing its ability to pioneer cutting-edge programs and technological advancements, looking to improve areas like service recovery, customer experience and customer satisfaction.
"Delta Air Lines and Georgia Tech have a rich heritage of working together in everything from research to hiring our co-ops and graduates. We are delighted that Delta’s collaborative research center will provide even greater opportunities for Georgia Tech students, faculty, and staff to work with this outstanding global airline,” said Georgia Tech President G. P. “Bud” Peterson.
The venture is planned for early 2016, making Delta the newest tenant of the Centergy building, a development housing corporate innovation hubs and startups, among others, and part of Georgia Tech’s innovation neighborhood at Technology Square.
As part of The Delta Air Lines Foundation’s mission to support education, the Foundation has committed a $3 million multi-year grant to the Georgia Tech Foundation for the Georgia Tech Advanced Manufacturing Pilot Facility (AMPF) located at 555 14th St. in Atlanta’s Midtown district. The AMPF establishes Georgia Tech as the national leader in advanced manufacturing with a collaboration of Mechanical Engineering, Aerospace Engineering, Industrial and Systems Engineering, Materials Science and Engineering, and Interactive Computing.
“We are grateful to The Delta Air Lines Foundation for their generous commitment that will facilitate breakthrough research in advanced manufacturing,” Peterson said.