French aircraft engine maker SAFRAN to set up India unit - Broadsword by Ajai Shukla - Strategy. Economics. Defence.

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Tuesday 5 July 2022

French aircraft engine maker SAFRAN to set up India unit

Defence Minister welcomes Safran to be a part of joint development production projects (photo: DRDO working on the Kaveri engine)


By Ajai Shukla

Business Standard, 6th July 22


A delegation of French aircraft equipment Safran Group, led by its CEO Mr Olivier Andries, called on Defence Minister Rajnath Singh in Delhi on Tuesday. 


“During the meeting, Andries briefed Rajnath Singh on Safran’s plans to set up a Maintenance, Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility in India for overhauling the LEAP-1A and LEAP-1B engines in use by Indian and foreign commercial airlines,” said a defence ministry (MoD) press release on Tuesday.


Safran is one of the leading original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) of advanced aircraft engines for civil and fighter jets. Among its most successful products is the M88 jet engine that powers the Rafale fighter. 


Safran is one of the options being weighed by the MoD for partnering the Defence R&D Organisation in developing the indigenous Kaveri engine that would power home-built aircraft, such as the Advanced Medium Combat Aircraft (AMCA).


“The MRO facility through direct foreign investment of $US 150 million in Hyderabad is expected to create 500-600 highly skilled jobs. The facility will be able to overhaul over 250 engines per year in the beginning,” said the MoD.


Safran’s CEO also apprised Rajnath Singh about the plan to inaugurate two subsidiaries – Safran Aircraft Engines and Safran Electrical & Power India Pvt Ltd – that will both come up in Hyderabad. Safran Electrical & Power India Pvt Ltd will produce harnesses for civil and fighter jets.


In addition, Safran plans to set up a joint venture (JV) with Hindustan Aeronautics Ltd (HAL) in Bengaluru called Safran-HAL Aircraft Engines. 


The joint venture between Safran and HAL will produce rigid piping for aircraft engines including helicopter engines. The JV is expected to hire 160 new highly skilled personnel.


Safran Aircraft Engines, which will be set up on 10 acres of land in a Hyderabad special economic zone (SEZ) with an investment of Euro 36 million, will produce parts and components for advanced aircraft engines including rotating seals.


The Safran CEO outlined his company’s long-term plans for co-development and co-production of advanced jet engines and transfer of technology as per the existing Government of India policy. He also briefed Rajnath Singh on Safran’s capabilities in areas of technology beyond aircraft engines.


The defence minister welcomed new facilities in Hyderabad and the joint venture in Bengaluru. He stressed the importance India attaches to the strategic partnership with France.


Singh invited Safran for more co-development and co-production projects in India, in tune with ‘Make in India, Make for the World’ and ‘Aatmanirbhar Bharat’ plans. 


“We are a big market. However, we are increasingly focused on making in India for addressing the needs in a competitive manner and supplying to friendly foreign countries. You can leverage all the competitive advantages India offers, including the cost advantages and availability of trained manpower,” Rajnath Singh said. 


The Raksha Mantri asserted that both countries can contribute to each other's capability building.


Safran Aircraft Engines (previously Snecma) is a French aerospace engine manufacturer headquartered in Courcouronnes, France. It designs, makes and maintains engines for commercial and military aircraft as well as rocket engines for launch vehicles and satellites.


Some of Snecma’s most notable developments include the M88 for the RafaleOlympus 593 engine for the ConcordeCFM56/CFM-LEAP for single-aisle airliners, and Vulcan engines for the Ariane 5 rocket.


  1. # the picture tells it all - 'DRDO working on the kaveri engine'

    "The Kaveri engine has been specifically designed for the Indian operating environment, which ranges from hot desert to the highest mountain range in the world. The GTRE's design envisions achieving a fan pressure ratio of 4:1 and an overall pressure ratio of 27:1, which it believes will permit the Tejas to "supercruise" (cruise supersonically without the use of the afterburner).
    "Supercruise is sustained supersonic flight of a supersonic aircraft with a useful cargo, passenger, or weapons load without using afterburner (also known as "reheat"). Many supersonic military aircraft are not capable of supercruise and can only maintain Mach 1+ flight in short bursts with afterburners. Aircraft such as the SR-71 Blackbird are designed to cruise at supersonic speed with afterburners enabled.
    Some 4th generation fighter jets are technically capable of supercruise, but only at high altitudes and in a clean configuration. For an aircraft to be deemed capable of true supercruise, it must be able to carry a normal load for an extended distance without diving or using an afterburner.[1] Planes marketed as featuring supercruise usually have the ability to carry a combat load at low to medium altitudes; being able to break Mach 1 without afterburner does not necessarily show supercruise ability. For example, the Federation of American Scientists defined supercruise as "the ability to cruise at speeds of one and a half times the speed of sound or greater without the use of afterburner for extended periods in combat configuration" in discussing the F-22.[2]
    One of the best-known examples of an aircraft capable of supercruise was Concorde. Due to its long service as a commercial airliner, Concorde holds the record for the most time spent supersonic; more than all other aircraft combined.[3]"

    one can see the kaveri big brass briefing the raskha mantri, and subsequently 'defence, military analysts', the 'strategic studies' ecosystem, modestly informing our indigenous kaveri will allow india to leapfrog technologies and position tejas light combat aircraft as able to even 'supercruise'. and next mornings newspapers gushingly explaining supercruise to our literati. of course padma awards should also be dished out.

    meanwhile simple reverse engineering of an infantry rifle will be beyond us, and when we buy this from yankeestan we will do so after virtuously not including night vision sights so that costs can be kept down. two years down the line we will subsequently call for tenders for night vision sights for the same rifles, now to 'enhance war-fighting, night ops capabilities' of our military.

    coming out smelling of roses, win-win for all - the picture tells it as it is.

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