Safran, June 19, 2018 - Cologne, Germany - Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc company, announced today at the Future of Transportation World Conference a newly formed collaboration with Safran on the development of innovative hybrid electric power system solutions to support Bell's vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft concept.
"Bell is at the forefront of on-demand mobility – ushering a new era of flight where the benefits of aviation are accessible to more people in more places," said Scott Drennan, Bell's director of Innovation, while speaking at the Transportation Conference. "This announcement is another proof point of our commitment to providing transportation of people and logistics in new, innovative and more efficient ways; our work with Safran is a historical milestone for future transport solutions."
For several years, Safran innovation teams have been actively exploring the potential of hybrid solutions for future propulsion systems. Bell and Safran's shared vision for electric and hybrid electric aircraft is to strive for the successful deployment of Bell Air Taxis and new on demand mobility systems in the future.
"Thanks to the long and sustained technology-development strategy conducted within Safran, we can now offer Bell our hybrid electric power solutions for their next generation products that result in improved performance giving more value to our customers," said Stéphane Cueille, Safran senior executive vice president, R&T and Innovation.
In this collaboration, Bell will lead the design, development and production of VTOL systems, and Safran will bring its technical expertise to bear in the development of a disruptive propulsion system.
About Safran: Safran (Euronext Paris: SAF) is an international high-technology group, operating in the aircraft propulsion and equipment, space and defense markets. Safran has a global presence, with more than 58,000 employees and sales of 16.5 billion euros in 2017. Working alone or in partnership, Safran holds world or European leadership positions in its core markets. Safran undertakes Research & Development programs to meet fast-changing market requirements, with total R&D expenditures of around 1.4 billion euros in 2017. Safran is listed on the Euronext Paris stock exchange, and is part of the CAC 40 and Euro Stoxx 50 indices.
In February 2018, Safran took control of Zodiac Aerospace, significantly expanding its aircraft equipment activities. Together with Zodiac Aerospace, Safran has more than 91,000 employees and would have around €21 billion in adjusted revenue (pro forma 2016).
About Bell: Thinking above and beyond is what we do. For more than 80 years, we've been reimagining the experience of flight – and where it can take us. We are pioneers. We were the first to break the sound barrier and to certify a commercial helicopter. We were aboard NASA's first lunar mission and brought advanced tiltrotor systems to market. Today, we're defining the future of on-demand mobility. Headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas – as a wholly-owned subsidiary of Textron Inc (NYSE: TXT), – we have strategic locations around the globe. And with nearly one quarter of our workforce having served, helping our military achieve their missions is a passion of ours. Above all, our breakthrough innovations deliver exceptional experiences to our customers. Efficiently. Reliably. And always, with safety at the forefront.