In January 2021, Bruno Le Maire, the Minister of the Economy, Finance and Recovery, visited the site of Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS in Toulouse (France). The visit was part of his trip to the region of Occitanie in connection with the relaunch plan for the aviation sector. The Liebherr-Aerospace team presented two research and technology projects being carried out in preparation for the ‘post-crisis’ era, which will also contribute towards the transformation of air transport.
1.) The first project addresses the development of high-speed air compressors for hydrogen propulsion. Liebherr-Aerospace Toulouse SAS receives financial support from the French State on this R&D item.
The project represents an overall investment of € 4.9 million and will be co-funded by the French State with € 1.25 million. It involves partners based in France, two SMEs (Small and Medium Size Enterprise), namely 2E WINDINGS and Danielson Engineering, together with as a sub-contractor, Centum Adeneo.
These compact compressors will be used in the rail transport sector to provide compressed air to propulsion systems powered by hydrogen fuel cells.
The final fuel cell product itself will generate no CO2 emissions and provide an alternative for a new generation of trains.
With the development of these compressors, Liebherr-Aerospace will continue its efforts to diversify its activities targeted at the rail sector by offering innovative solutions based on technologies coming from the aerospace sector.
2.) The second project consists in developing a new line of products that until now had been imported, namely fluid pumps. These fluid pumps are an essential component of the thermal management technologies that will enable the more electrical aircraft. The more electrical aircraft will bring a substantial contribution to the reduction of emissions of air transport. That project represents an overall investment of around € 5 million and will be co-funded by the French State with an amount of € 2.4 million. The project will enable the company to extend its range of products in the area of thermal management on-board aircraft. This will also provide innovative solutions not only to the space and the rail and road transport markets, but also to emerging markets in the area of hydrogen and fuel cells.
Thanks to these 2 projects, Liebherr contributes to prepare the future with more environmentally. friendly aviation and railway industries and as well to preserve employment in Occitanie region where Liebherr is implemented since many years.
Source: Liebherr Aerospace