The new facility, located near Paris, is dedicated to next-generation, very-high-performance turbine blades.
Safran has inaugurated a new research centre for advanced turbine blades at its plant in Gennevilliers, near Paris. The ceremony was attended by French armed forces minister Florence Parly, German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen and Safran CEO Philippe Petitcolin.
The advanced turbine blade research facility is part of the company's Safran Tech corporate Research & Technology unit. The new 3,000m2 research centre is staffed by about 30 engineers and doctoral candidates and fitted with state-of-the-art machinery and equipment, allowing them to carry out all development work needed for next-generation very-high-performance turbine blades.
The new unit will investigate innovative technologies, including multidisciplinary design, single-crystal casting, 3D-printed ceramic cores, thermal coatings, cooling circuits, digitised processes, self-adapting micro-drilling, and non-destructive testing based on artificial intelligence.
These turbine blades will be incorporated on the engines currently equipping the Rafale combat aircradt to improve aircraft dispatch reliability and reduce through-life maintenance and production costs. The technologies developed by the centre will also be used on the future high-performance engine from Safran Aircraft Engines for the Franco-German Future Combat Air System (FCAS).
In addition, the centre will develop technologies for use on civil aircraft engines and helicopter engines.