At Safran, Clara Moriconi is working on additive manufacturing, a technology that must make aviation cleaner

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Clara Moriconi, ingénieure de Safran de 33 ans, manage une équipe de recherche sur la fabrication additive.

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Posted on Jan 28, 2021 at 7:00 amUpdated Jan 29, 2021, 10:15 AM

“Ecology is a value that has animated me on a daily basis, for a long time”, explains Clara Moriconi, thirty-three years old. This native of Strasbourg, daughter of a doctor and an executive in the pharmaceutical industry, is working on a technology that could help make aviation greener: additive manufacturing. Also called 3D printing, it makes it possible to manufacture parts by fusing successive layers of a metallic material.

Clara Moriconi has been working on this project since 2016, when she joined Safran's research and technology center in Saclay, in the Paris region. Its mission: to develop the digital tools necessary to design and manufacture parts using this technique. “What motivates me intrinsically is to optimize high-tech mechanical systems, including helicopter and airplane engines, to make it lighter or smaller, with fewer parts, and more durable over time. “, she explains.

A goal more important than it seems. This weight gain can help lighten the engine of airplanes. So to consume less fuel ”, says this passionate about means of transport. Among the other advantages of this technology, the savings in resources that it allows: “We do not come to machine a block of material to have a final part. Result, we lose less material. “

A concrete mission

Clara Moriconi joined the English aeronautics and defense group in 2013, as a digital methods and tools engineer at Safran Helicopter Engines, near Pau (Pyrénées-Atlantiques). She had just defended her thesis at the National School of Mechanics and Aerotechnics, in Vienne, and wanted to join a large industrial group. “I wanted to apply my skills in an industrial context, with products to come out. It seemed more concrete to me ”, she indicates.

She now manages a team of seven people specializing in digital technologies for additive manufacturing. This year promises to be particularly busy with the transfer of activities to Haillan, near Bordeaux, where the group is creating a “campus factory” devoted to this promising technology. A bet for the future for Safran, shaken by the health crisis. The group's turnover was down 33% in the first nine months of 2021, to 12.2 billion Pounds.

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