The Airbus Saint-Eloi site is responsible for delivering equipped and tested engine pylon to the FAL. Located in the Toulouse region, this facility’s main activities include the design of pylon and propulsion system integration; and the manufacturing of pylon and nacelle components, including hard metal transformation, pylon sub-assembly and pylon integration.
Saint-Eloi produces and delivers multiple types of engine pylons, equipping the entire Airbus family of aircraft as well as the A400M military airlifter. The facility was expanded during 2010 with a new assembly hall dedicated to engine pylons for the new A350 XWB, already operative with a first flow-line that will be duplicated in the future.
a time-saving “flowline” system for effectively moving parts from one workstation to the next.
Pylons are structures which hold the engine to the wing, so are one of the most important parts of the aircraft. They are a key element as they support all loads generated by the engine that in the A350 XWB, is the largest engine ever to power an Airbus aircraft. Effectively, the pylons, to which all the loads are transferred, are crossed by many different systems: hydraulic, fuel, electrical and air conditioning.
Another function is to retrieve all the heat dissipated by the engine, so they suffer sudden changes in temperature: going from -40ºC (cruising speed) to 300ºC (engine starting) and they also suffer very high vibrations. The pylons are composed of 90% of hard metals such as titanium; the rest of the components are essentially light alloys or composite materials.
The A350 XWB's aft pylon fairing has required a dedicated production line for this challenging titanium part.
Based on presentation “A350 XWB –Tour introduction“ available at www.eads.com from Global Investor Forum, Toulouse 15 -16 November 2010.