Darmstadt has an impressive record especially in the fields of technology + innovation and transport + logistics. The city located just 30 km to the south of Frankfurt enjoys an outstanding position in the aerospace industry. A dense network of research institutes and companies operating in the IT sector and a good mix of new branches of research and traditional natural and engineering sciences also set the tone of the city.
Over 30 public and private research establishments provide ample justification for the title "the city of science" and Darmstadt's tradition of research and development extends well beyond the area of transport + logistics. Yet the region is a leading force in the aerospace sector and has been since 1908 when August Euler built Germany's first aircraft factory in Darmstadt and founded the country's first flying school: an inheritance that brings responsibilities. In 1967, the European Space Operation Centre (ESOC) was founded in Darmstadt. Its latest project is an important contribution to the development of the European satellite navigation system "Galileo". The founding of the European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT) in 1986, and the European Center for Aviation Development (ECAD) have established Darmstadt as a key player in the aerospace industry for the long term.
Technology + innovation: As well as aviation, space and satellite technologies, biotechnology, cosmetics and pharmaceutical technology, mechatronics and, above all, information technology are of vital importance to Darmstadt as a centre for business and science. Many software companies have their headquarters in and around the city; the structure of the sector is characterised by both a large number of small and medium-sized companies and well-known international market leaders. Software AG, the second largest software house in Germany, has its headquarters here. SAP has links to Darmstadt through SAP Research CEC. In addition, the city has no less than five important research and educational institutions in the IT sector: the Technische Universität Darmstadt, the Darmstadt University of Applied Sciences, the Fraunhofer Institutes for Secure Information Technology (SIT) und Computer Graphics Research (IGD) and the LOEWE Center for Advanced Security Research Darmstadt (CASED).