American seeks “superior braking product” with switch to Safran carbon brakes

American Airlines has partnered with Safran Landing Systems to move from steel to carbon brakes on its Boeing 737NG fleet of more than 300 aircraft currently in operation.

The airline said the move was part of its commitment to sustainability. Using the Safran Landing Systems carbon brakes configuration will reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 77 tons per Boeing 737NG aircraft every year, American said.

Carbon brakes are lighter than steel brakes, with up to 700 pounds (320 kg) of weight savings per aircraft.

“Ensuring our existing fleet — the youngest among U.S. network carriers — is operating as efficiently as possible is critical to reaching our climate goals. Reducing our flight weight with a superior braking product is a win-win for our operation,” said American Airlines’ senior vice president of technical operations Kevin Brickner.

Safran Landing Systems’ CEO Cédric Goubet commented: “We are honoured to begin this partnership on wheels and brakes with American Airlines, one of the largest airlines in the world. This partnership recognises the excellence of our equipment, the high level of expertise of our teams as well as our research and technology efforts to reduce the impact of air transport on the environment. This collaboration is a great opportunity for Safran Landing Systems to increase its presence in the US market and expand the growing activity of its Walton site.”

Safran Landing Systems will manufacture the wheels and carbon brakes and perform the carbon heat sinks exchanges in its production plant in Walton, Kentucky, which has over 350 qualified employees. American’s Technical Operations team will complete the MRO services at its base maintenance facility in Tulsa, Oklahoma.

The contract is provided under the ‘Landing Life’ support and services offer which covers all Safran Landing Systems’ after-sales business.

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