The purpose of the Objectives and Performance Contract 2017 - 2021, signed on 14 December 2016, is to fulfil ONERA's primary mission:
"placing research at the service of the aerospace sector, in its various components: defence, air transport and space activities".
The Objectives and Performance Contract reflects a strengthening of the links between ONERA and the State regarding the definition of future-oriented research. It also provides for a rapprochement with the Directorate General of Armaments (DGA) on prospective defence projects, in order to stimulate research initiatives. Moreover, it specifies priority defence research topics for which ONERA is stepping up its efforts: scientific innovations necessary for the development of hyper-velocity weapons, advances linked to new air combat concepts, and preparation of future information acquisition and processing systems for space intelligence and surveillance. For air transport, research is focused on the scientific and technical advances needed to prepare new generations of aircraft.