European Heritage Days 2012 - Seeking Safran's History

Paris, August 22, 2012

For the 29th European Heritage Days, on September 15 and 16, 2012, the Safran Aerospace Museum is inviting visitors to discover its unrivaled collection of over 100 historic airplane, helicopter and rocket engines.

The theme of this year's event is "Hidden Heritage", and the Safran Museum is taking advantage of this opportunity to introduce visitors to Jean Bertin. A former Snecma (Safran group) engineer, at the end of the 1960s the visionary Monsieur Bertin invented the Aérotrain, an innovative high-speed train riding a cushion of air above a guide rail. A clever combination of plane and train, the Aérotrain was designed to provide rail links over distances from 100 to 500 kilometers (63 – 313 miles) at speeds of 250 to 300 km/h (156 to 188 mph). In fact, this project competed with the TGV, the high-speed train that was eventually chosen by the government.

For this year's Heritage Days, the Association Jean Bertin (AJB) has loaned the Aérotrain prototype No. 2 to the Museum, where it will be on display for the entire week, from September 15 to 21.

Visitors of all ages can also take part in the many special events organized by the Safran Museum in conjunction with various associations:

  • Airbus A320 flight simulator: the site will set up a simulator of this commercial twinjet, powered by the best-selling CFM56 turbofan engine. Visitors will be introduced to a jetliner flight deck, and go through all steps, from initial checklist to takeoff, cruise, landing and shutting down the engines. (In partnership with GG Production "Dreams without limits")
  • Bell 206 helicopter simulator. A simulator for the famous American helicopter, with seats for both student pilot and instructor, simulates "ab initio" training flights under both VFR (Visual Flight Rules) and IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) conditions. Visitors can take the controls themselves in this extremely realistic training environment. (In partnership with Nonolight "Helicopters for everybody")
  • R/C mini-helicopter workshop, teaching neophytes how to fly these amazing little remote-control electric helicopters. The workshop will be run continuously, in 10 to 15 minute segments. (Offered by AAMS: the Association of Friends of the Safran Museum)

Some of the events organized during these two days are specially designed for younger air & space enthusiasts:

  • For the youngest children, two scientific experiment workshops will be organized on the Museum's mezzanine level. (In partnership with the association "Fleurs de Sciences")
  • The AAMS (Association of Friends of the Safran Museum) will also offer a mini-flight simulator for youngsters at least 6 years old.
  • Three water rocket workshops, enabling children 8 years and older to understand the different aspects of rocket propulsion while having fun! The rockets will be launched from the Museum parking lot, and reach an average height of 20 meters (44 ft). (In partnership with "Planète Sciences")
  • Three model rocket workshops, allowing young visitors, 12 years old and up, to take their rocket knowledge to a higher plane! They will be able to build and launch their own model rockets powered by miniature solid rocket motors, reaching altitudes up to 100 meters (320 feet). (In partnership with "Planète Sciences")

The Museum's permanent collections are also of course open to the public. Highlights include:

  • The 1925 Messier car, the first car fitted with an oleo-pneumatic suspension.
  • Gnome & Rhône D3 motorcycle from 1929, with its own gas generator to provide fuel. .
  • Mirage III C fighter and Alouette II helicopter – and visitors can climb into their cockpits for a souvenir photo!

On Sunday, September 16, two small shuttle trains will be provided to take visitors between the Safran Museum and the city of Réau, which is also organizing various activities.


Safran is a leading international high-technology group with three core businesses: Aerospace (propulsion and equipment), Defence and Security. Operating worldwide, the Safran group has close to 60,000 employees and generated sales of 11.7 billion euros in 2011. Working alone or in partnership, Safran holds world or European leadership positions in its core markets. The Group invests heavily in Research & Development to meet the requirements of changing markets, including expenditures of 1.3 billion euros in 2011. Safran is listed on NYSE Euronext Paris and is part of the CAC40 index.

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The Safran Aerospace Museum offers a unique collection of more than 100 airplane, helicopter and rocket engines. Most of the pieces on display were restored by the Association of Friends of the Safran Museum (for aircraft engines) and by former employees of the Société Européenne de Propulsion (SEP, now part of the Safran group), for rocket engines. Reflecting the long history of the Safran group, these powerplants tell the story of our conquest of air and space. The Museum offers visitors dynamic, interactive exhibitions, with audiovisual systems providing an entertaining, informative complement to the historic objects on display. In addition to these legendary engines, the Safran Museum also presents a selection of the aircraft equipment manufactured by the Group, including landing gear and braking systems, and some of the prestigious products made by predecessor companies, from luxury cars, to motorcycles, to … pressure cookers!

Safran contact

Museum address
Rond point René RAVAUD
77550 Moissy-Cramayel

Opening hours:
9:00 am to 6:00 pm

For further information, go to the Museum website: or call us at 33 (0)1 60 59 41 66

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