By setting up two new production lines dedicated to the manufacture of its ENGINeUS engines in its plant in the Deux-Sèvres (translation), the Safran subsidiary makes the city of Niort a player in the aviation of tomorrow.
This anchoring is not the result of chance. This site has naturally established itself because of its specialization in all things electrical. Isn't the Niort-Chaurey site described as the flagship of the group's electrical business by the general manager of the Power division? Safran Electrical & Power also plans the deployment of two automated production lines at Pitstone in Great Britain. Its goal: to manufacture 1000 engines per year from 2026!
Hybrid and all-electric propulsion
High power density, optimized integration, reduced weight: the ENGINeUS technology is designed to equip training and passenger aircraft. They can also operate in a hybrid system by assisting a combustion engine. For its innovative engine, Safran Electrical & Power obtained in February 2023 the "Design Organization" approval issued by the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The certification, scheduled for 2024, would allow the company to be a pioneer in this promising sector.
Niort, the group's center of excellence in electrical systems
Niort (translation) is a major site of French aeronautics which has 720 workers. Electronics and electrical distribution are not left out. The region is therefore ultra-competitive in the aviation sector where the share of electric is important. The DGAC (General Directorate of Civil Aviation) "will invest up to 50%" in the installation of these new lines, which will be developed by the Calaisien Baron group. More than 80 people are being recruited as part of this launch.
The interest of aircraft manufacturers
Electric motors encourage the decarbonization of aviation. They reduce noise pollution and make it possible to prepare for the energy transition. Safran has already signed several agreements to equip CAE's Pier Archer aircraft, VoltAero's CAssio 330 hybrid electric aircraft prototype and Diamont Aircraft's eDA40 electric aircraft.
Even if Safran acts in the face of the climate challenge, combustion propulsion will remain the majority until 2050. It will be necessary to wait for major technological breakthroughs in terms of energy density of batteries and high voltage management to replace highly polluting thermal engines and achieve carbon neutrality in aviation.
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