A first firm tranche of 30 aircraft out of a total of 169 helicopters was recently notified to Airbus by the Directorate General for Armaments, project owner of the HIL program. The contract also includes the order for ten H160 helicopters for the National Gendarmerie, decided within the framework of the French support plan for the aeronautical industry.
One of Safran’s main contributions to these helicopters will be the Arrano, a new-generation 1,300 hp engine that incorporates the best of aeronautical engine technology.
It offers fuel consumption reduced by approximately 20% compared to the engines of the helicopters it will replace in the French forces, and can incorporate up to 50% sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). The Arrano received its EASA (European Air Safety Agency) certification in June 2019.
Another major piece of equipment is Safran’s Euroflir 410 optronic system, which will bring its observation performance to the Gupard helicopters and the H160 of the National Gendarmerie.
Safran will equip these helicopters with the high-performance systems necessary for the piloting and stability of the aircraft, including TRIM and SEMA (Smart Electro Mechanical Actuator) electromechanical actuators, as well as cockpit elements and windscreen wiper systems, as well as the distribution electric.
Safran will also supply safety systems (buoyancy systems, life rafts), fuel management and cooling.
“We welcome this order from the Minister of Armies with great pride and satisfaction. The Arrano engines will be manufactured, assembled and repaired in France. This order testifies to the renewed confidence of the French State, our first customer, with 1,600 engines helicopters in service within its fleets,” said Franck Saudo, President of Safran Helicopter Engines.