His­pano-suiza (Safran) on board KC-390


Safran was se­lected by the Brazil­ian air­craft man­u­fac­turer Em­braer to sup­ply the elec­tri­cal power distri­bu­tion and back-up power gen­er­a­tion sys­tems on its new KC-390 mil­i­tary trans­port air­craft. This rep­re­sents a real chal­lenge for the elec­tri­cal en­ergy sys­tem spe­cial­ist, which has broad­ened its field of ex­per­tise for the re­quire­ments of this pro­gramme. It marks yet an­other step to­wards “more elec­tric” air­craft.

It is no co­in­ci­dence that His­pano-Suiza (Safran) is work­ing on the KC-390. Two key fac­tors played their role: firstly, Em­braer was in­ter­ested in work­ing with new sup­pli­ers in the field of elec­tri­cal power gen­er­a­tion and distri­bu­tion and, se­condly, His­pano-Suiza re­sponded to this re­quire­ment by putting for­ward an in­no­va­tive range, through the Safran Power di­vi­sion. The con­tract in­cludes the sup­ply of the pri­mary and sec­ondary elec­tri­cal distri­bu­tion sys­tems as well as the Ram Air Tur­bine (RAT), a back-up elec­tri­cal gen­er­a­tion sys­tem.

The pri­mary elec­tri­cal power distri­bu­tion sys­tem is the heart of an air­craft’s elec­tri­cal sys­tem. It en­com­passes the en­ergy gen­er­ated by all power sources on the air­craft and en­sures that this en­ergy is avail­able for all air­craft sys­tems by in­tel­li­gently man­ag­ing the net­work. The sec­ondary power distri­bu­tion sys­tem pro­vides elec­tri­cal power for equip­ment that can be turned on or off as need ac­cord­ing to the flight phase, such as in­te­rior/ex­te­rior light­ing and the cabin air man­age­ment sys­tem.

Other Safran com­pa­nies are also work­ing on the KC-390: Messier-Bu­gatti-Dowty was se­lected for the brakes and land­ing gear and Sagem for the hor­i­zon­tal sta­biliser trim con­trol sys­tem.

Em­braer De­fense and Se­cu­rity’s KC-380 air­craft

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