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Safran Signs Deal With FLYING WHALES to Equip LCA60T Airships With Electrical Systems

Safran Electrical & Power has signed a deal with FLYING WHALES to equip the company’s LCA60T airships with electrical generation, distribution and conversion systems. FLYING WHALES is developing a program for large cargo capacity airships.

FLYING WHALES LCA60T Rendering - Courtesy Safran/FLYING WHALES

On Wednesday (November 3, 2021), Safran announced that FLYING WHALES has signed an agreement with Safran Electrical & Power, a global leader in aeronautical electric systems, to fit their large cargo capacity LCA60T airships with electrical generation, distribution and conversion systems. The FLYING WHALES LCA60T (Large Capacity Airship 60 Tons) will allow the loading and unloading of up to 60 tons of freight in hover flight. The rigid airship is being designed for wood longshoring, freight and exceptional transport markets, providing point-to-point transfer at low operating costs and reduced environmental impact.

In Wednesday’s announcement, Safran Electrical & Power’s General Manager – Power Division, Hervé Blanc, said,

“We are very proud to be among the partners of FLYING WHALES, a gem of French industry that is offering a cutting-edge project fully aligned with our driving principles: providing point-to-point transport and helping to reduce the carbon intensity of aircraft. After having designed the electrical systems of the brand-new generations of hybrid and fully electric aircraft, we are reaching a new stage in the revolution of aviation with this visionary and unique project.”

Also commenting on the electrical systems partnership, FLYING WHALES’ Technical Director and Deputy Managing Director, Vincent Guibout, said,

“To carry out an aeronautical program as innovative and ambitious as the LCA60T, the quality of the industrial partnerships is crucial. Working hand-in-hand with Safran Electrical & Power is most certainly a guarantee of success in electrifying the world's largest aircraft. The architecture of the LCA60T's electrical system requires us to venture into an unprecedented area. This is what the teams at Safran Electrical & Power and our teams are succeeding in doing.”

Safran Electrical & Power will provide all electrical systems for powering the equipment and managing the non-propulsive electrical networks of the airship. This includes supplying the electrical generation system, the complete electrical distribution system, the power converters (which convert 115 V AC into 28 V DC), and the batteries. Safran will also provide after-sales support for the equipment. The contract includes FLYING WHALES entire fleet of 150 aircraft during the first 10 years of production. Safran Electrical & Power will deliver the first electrical equipment at the end of 2022 for ground tests, with FLYING WHALES planning their first airship flight in 2024, and entry into service at the beginning of 2026.

Safran Electrical & Power to Provide Electrical Systems to FLYING WHALES for LCA60T Airships - Infographic Courtesy of Safran

Safran is an international high technology Group with operations in aviation (propulsion, equipment and interiors), defense and space. The company’s core purpose is to contribute to a safer, more sustainable world. With a global presence, Safran has 76,000 team members and reported 2020 revenues of €16.5 billion. The company holds, independently or in partnership, world or regional leaderships positions in the core markets they serve. Safran is listed on the Euronext stock exchange, and is part of the CAC 40 and Euro Stoxx 50 indices.

Source: Safran


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