: 3 min

Love a challenge? Here at Safran, we do too!

Passion for aviation is infectious. For several years now, Safran has been sharing it with students through a range of online tech challenges. From the Black-Out Challenge to the Safran Challenge and DroneLoad Challenge, it’s a great way of sparking bright new ideas as we invent tomorrow’s aviation industry.
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Last December, panel of judges for the 2019 Safran Challenge singled out three student teams for their innovatively designed aircraft cabins. This and our other contests are a fun and effective way of engaging with these talented young people and encouraging them to choose an aviation career – with us!

"The student challenges are a recent initiative to strengthen Safran's image with these future jobseekers," says Stéphane Dubois, Safran Executive Vice President, Human Resources. "It draws out their love of technology, which is a vital part of our recruitment strategy. We'll be hiring almost 40,000 people in the next four years, so it's crucially important to get students involved in our innovations and our ambitions."

"The challenges are a great opportunity to understand the innovation process" – Thibault, student.

More broadly, these competitions get students actively innovating, expressing their ideas and engaging with some of the major issues facing the world – a prime focus for today's young generations. It's also a chance for them to take part in an exciting competition and expand their personal and professional networks. By competing, students are working directly with Safran teams, so the initiative fosters knowledge and skills transfer in both directions!

"We helped the students with project management aspects and taught them about the industrial aspects" – Fabrice, Safran Aircraft Engines.

"I've been genuinely impressed by the students, their ideas and their work" – Marc, Safran Cabin.

The Safran Challenge culminated on December 11 with three student teams winning prizes for their projects on the aircraft cabin of the future. What's more, there's a chance one of these projects may be supported and followed up by our engineers.

"This challenge was especially interesting because we were innovating to help passengers and cabin crew" – Camille, student.

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The Black-Out Challenge, launched last September by Safran Electronics & Defense, puts students in a futuristic world where there's no geolocation system. The object is to devise an innovative onboard replacement solution for aircraft or an alternative navigation device.

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The third DroneLoad Challenge gets underway in a few days. It's coordinated by nonprofit association Planète Sciences in partnership with Safran Electronics & Defense. Entitled Taxi Driver 2024, this year's challenge is to deploy drones capable of automatically recognizing specific areas on the ground and then pick up and place objects on them. The action takes place during the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris.

Safran is pursuing various technological pathways to a lower carbon aviation industry, and one of the most promising right now is the more-electric aircraft. Other favorite topics for students include geolocation systems, digitization and additive manufacturing — all providing a wealth of ideas for future Safran challenges!

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