Warning This site is not recommended for Internet Explorer browsers. Please use another web browser to get a better experience.

When your life depends on an ejection seat...


Every two years, during the Paris Air Show, Safran Martin Baker France (a 50/50 joint venture between Safran and the English company Martin Baker Aircraft) organizes a reception to celebrate the lives saved thanks to jet fighter ejection seats. A look back on the 2017 edition.

During this event, French pilots who needed to use the ejection seats on their Rafale, Mirage or Alpha jets are awarded a diploma and, in keeping with the English tradition, receive a tie symbolizing their membership of the club for ejected pilots, the Tie Club. This year, the ceremony was held on Thursday, June 23 on the Pavillion Seine boat. One of the highlights of this edition was the presentation of the aeronautics medal to Safran Martin Baker France's Technical and Industrial Director, Philippe Frechon.

This event is also an opportunity to assemble all the stakeholders in the company: representatives of the French Defense Forces, industrial representatives and Safran Martin Baker France employees. The French Air Force was represented at the ceremony by Major General Philippe Adam, and the French Navy Air Force by Vice-Admiral Bruno Thouvenin.

This tradition is highly important for the ejected pilots, but also for the employees of Safran Martin Baker France: “The reception organized for the ejected pilots serves a dual purpose. First, it brings together the broad family of ejected pilots who all went through highly charged experiences and really appreciate having people listen attentively when they speak about these particular experiences. It is also extremely rewarding for our employees to meet the pilots whose lives have been saved thanks to their work”, comments William Kurtz, CEO of Safran Martin Baker France.

To date, Safran Martin Baker has produced nearly 5,750 ejection seats, equipping the armies of more than 30 countries. 701 pilots have been saved by activating their Safran Martin Baker France equipment.