Safran Engineering Services: innovation for the automotive industry.
A major player in the aeronautics industry and part of a large industrial group, Safran Engineering Services has wisely drawn on its business line expertise to invest in different markets. Now that the automotive industry is making a full recovery, the company is forging ambitious and innovative partnerships with manufacturers. We had a chat with Raphaël Blanchard, Manager of the Electronic Systems Department.
- How is Safran Engineering Services moving into the automotive market?
Raphaël Blanchard: The automotive market is making a great comeback. Manufacturers' concerns are major ones: reducing vehicle weight, electric power, the self-driving vehicle revolution… we are one step ahead and offer innovative services in engineering and project management. Our expertise in the field of aeronautics is a real asset. Our engineers have spent a long time working on the problems of reducing the weight of structures, more electric aircraft, self-driving systems, safety and certification. The gateways are in place. The fact that we belong to a group such as Safran confirms our ability to manage and coordinate ambitious programs and projects. Our international presence enables us to offer highly competitive proposals. Finally, we have long-standing partners in the automotive industry who can confirm our expertise. All of this makes a difference when it comes to new clients.
- What exactly are the fields of expertise of Safran Engineering Services in the automotive industry?
Raphaël Blanchard: They are very closely related to the challenges of innovation in this market. Our skills cover the fields of systems engineering, on-board software, electrical design, operational safety and certification, as well as materials engineering: composites and aluminum, and combustion. They are broad and mainly apply to the development or management of innovative projects. In Paris, our engineers are co-developing the first Peugeot self-driving vehicle system. It will see the light of day with production vehicles by 2020. We are working here on the design followed by manufacturing: it’s a highly innovative, ambitious and genuinely exciting project for our teams!
- How far do you expect the innovations in the automotive industry to go?
Raphaël Blanchard: Big Data and data merging are at the heart of our reflections, so that we can think up new services for both manufacturers and end customers, particularly in terms of predictive maintenance or "infotainment" services. We are also exploring the area of platforms and connected objects, with special attention to the theme of cybersecurity to guarantee confidentiality of sensitive data exchanges. We are also expanding our mechanical skills in the area of additive manufacturing to design lighter structures and to reduce our clients' development cycles. These research projects are in full swing and offer real prospects for growth for our clients and development for all our employees.
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