Safran at the forefront of electric propulsion
For several years now, WEAF member Safran has been developing a “battery pack” technology, integrating the best cells available on the market with its thermal, mechanical and electronic management systems. GENeUSPACK™ batteries are an essential building block in electrical systems for future all-electric and hybrid aircraft.
Meeting the challenge of the all-electric and hybrid aircraft of tomorrowGENeUSPACK™ provides all-in-one smart battery systems for both Electronic Propulsion and More Electric Aircraft applications.
All aircraft are equipped with batteries for starting their engines. Safran’s role in this area is to integrate the battery into the electrical chain. At the same time, the Group, through its Safran Electrical & Power company, is developing a “battery pack” technology to provide electric propulsion for aircraft. These can be powered either in “all-electric” mode (with batteries replacing kerosene) or in hybrid mode (a combination of batteries and kerosène).
“The acquisition of Zodiac Aerospace’s activities – which covered batteries specifically for aircraft take-off – has enabled Safran Electrical & Power to get involved in the development of propulsion batteries”, explains Sophie Boudau, Head of the Battery Division at Safran Electrical & Power. Their lithium-ion technology ensures they will be able to last the entire flight, and will be more environmentally friendly and easier to maintain. “We have reached a TRL5 1 maturity level for starter batteries, and hope to reach the same level for propulsion batteries by 2024-2025.”
Two key challenges for batteries
The development of new battery technologies presents a twofold challenge:
- Firstly, to ensure very high cell performance, through chemistry; and
- Secondly, to control safety, particularly with regard to the risk of thermal runaway, which is proportional to performance.
This is achieved by the various layers of protection and the integration of the cells into the packaging. The challenge is to find the right balance.
“Our expertise lies in battery packaging, protections, integration and certification. We provide all these elements to the aircraft manufacturer so that it can create its battery certification package,” explains Jean-François Rideau, Head of Strategy and Digital Transformation for Power, Safran Electrical & Power.
Safran invents the next generation of batteries
GENeUSPACK™ is the name given to Safran’s battery line, whose development is based on the complex ecosystem of the battery world, with the aim of making flights lasting several hours.
“Batteries represent a real growth driver for Safran Electrical & Power. We are also working on their power delivery as they age, and on the implementation of a complete ecosystem, from creation to recycling” Bruno Bellanger, Vice President & General Manager of the Power Division at Safran Electrical & Power.
GENeUSPACK™ provides all-in-one smart battery systems for both Electronic Propulsion and More Electric Aircraft applications. Safran Electrical & Power selects & integrates best-in-class battery cells on the market, bringing the technology to safety levels required for aerospace. Electric propulsion is an ideal way to decarbonise flying. However, because of the limited power and range of the battery, electric motors will be used on aircraft carrying a small number of passengers over relatively short routes.
To find out more visit: www.safran-group.com
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