France’s Safran is here at the Dubai airshow for the first time since engine maker Snecma and electronics specialist Sagem merged. The group also includes Snecma’s landing gear and brake division.
French engine maker Snecma is here at Asian Aerospace 2006 courting prospective partners and applications for its proposed new SM-X engine. The 8,500- to 10,500-pound thrust turbofan is being offered both for new large business jets and regional jetliners in the 40- to 60-seat class.
Sichuan Snecma Aero-engine Maintenance Co. (SSAMC), a joint venture between Snecma Services, Air China and Willis Lease Finance Corp., has signed an exclusive 20-year maintenance, repair and overhaul agreement to service CFM56-5B and -7B engines powering Air China’s growing fleet of 160 aircraft.
Since Snecma dropped the idea of taking a share in General Electric’s GEnx turbofan program the two long-time partners now find themselves competing in the regional jet engine arena.
Sagem Défense Sécurité will supply avionics for the 322 UH-145 helicopters (plus 30 options) selected by the U.S. Army on June 30. Subsidiary Sagem Avionics will handle equipment integration, final assembly and product support from its facility in Grand Prairie, Texas.
Turbomeca is ready to launch new variants of its helicopter engines. The French manufacturer (Hall 4 Stand B12) is working on technology demonstrators that can be the basis for a preliminary powerplant. But before launching any such program, it is waiting for the market to clearly indicate the need for new Arriel or Arrius turboshaft engines.
Messier-Bugatti (Hall 4 Stand B12) is scheduled to deliver the first complete braking system for the Boeing 787-8 airliner by December. The first all-electric brakes on a civil aircraft promises a weight savings and improved performance as well as maintenance ease and added safety. To support 787 production, the French company has established a workshop in Seattle within close proximity to the big airframer.
Safran (Hall 4 Stand B12), the offspring of last year’s somewhat surprising merger of French engine giant Snecma and communications group Sagem, claims to have found its feet quickly and to be having a boom year. Sales in 2005 showed increases for all business areas of the new group, except communications.
Engine manufacturers are gearing up for development programs aimed at bringing new generations of 10,000-pound-thrust turbofans to business aviation. Silvercrest, the first of Snecma’s new family of such engines for midsize to large business jets and 40- to 60-seat regional airliners, makes its world debut here with its new name and newly revealed specs.
French companies Turbomeca and Microturbo have built a new turbine engine manufacturing and maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) facility in the UK near Fareham, Hampshire, on England’s south coast. The new structure, built at a cost of $7.7 million, adds 50,000 sq ft of office and factory space, doubling the previous available area.