Geneviève Fioraso, French Minister of Higher Education and Research, and Jean-Paul Herteman, Chairman and CEO of Safran, inaugurated Safran’s new Research & Technology Center, Safran Tech, at France’s leading science and technology cluster, in Saclay, near Paris, in late January. Safran Tech will eventually house some 300 scientists and engineers dedicated to research on key disciplines for all of Safran’s business sectors.
Safran Tech reflects Safran’s corporate strategy of intensifying and pooling its R&T efforts to focus on several major disruptive technologies, in particular more electric aircraft, new aircraft propulsion architectures and new information and communications technologies. Safran has already invested nearly 60 million euros in this venture, and the total will exceed 80 million euros by 2018.
Safran Tech will take the Group’s R&T to a new plane by facilitating open innovation. The center’s staff will team up with universities, government organizations, industry partners and innovative startups, working in joint laboratories or platforms to form a top-tier scientific community, characterized by creativity and connectivity, and open to the entire world.
Safran Tech is already working with leading national research organizations such as the Université d’Orsay, Ecole Centrale de Paris, Sup’elec, Sup’Optique and ONERA, and will soon house a joint laboratory with the French Alternative Energies and Atomic Energy Commission, CEA, dedicated to research on sensors and their applications. Another upcoming venture is a joint vehicle robotics laboratory, created by PSA (Peugeot-Citroën), Valeo, the École des mines de Paris engineering school and Safran. Two research centers belonging to the École des Mines ParisTech (Ecole des Mines de Paris) will eventually be located on the site.
"Safran Tech reflects Safran’s ongoing investments to ensure the future of our businesses, our industry, the knowledge economy in Europe, innovation and growth," said Jean-Paul Herteman, Chairman and CEO of Safran. "Thanks to our predecessors’ genius and pertinent investments, the European aerospace industry in general, and Safran in particular are rolling out a new generation of products offering unexcelled performance. We have an unprecedented backlog of orders, equal to an all-time record of seven years of business. But you can never take anything for granted, especially in our industry. Building on our long heritage, we have to create a future that is worthy of the legacy left by the pioneers in aerospace, defense and security."