CIRCOR Announces Partnership with FLYING WHALES for the LCA60T Program

CIRCOR International, a manufacturer and marketer of differentiated technology products and sub-systems, announced that its subsidiary CIRCOR Industrial has been chosen by FLYING WHALES, a pioneering aeronautical company, as its partner for the development and production of critical helium valves essential for the LCA60T airship. These valves facilitate the controlled release of helium from the airship’s cells as needed during operations. A total of twenty-eight such valves will be meticulously integrated into the airship’s helium cells.

This strategic collaboration is the culmination of an extensive and collaborative effort spanning over a year between the dedicated teams at CIRCOR and FLYING WHALES, culminating in the signing of the contract in February 2023. A crucial co-engineering phase in 2021 allowed for precise specification and alignment regarding this pivotal helium management component within the airship.

“We are delighted to seal this partnership with a major aeronautical industrial player. The proactivity of CIRCOR’s teams was decisive in our choice. For example, the creation of a scale model of the valve allowed us to anticipate the problems related to the size and optimization of the equipment,” explains Benoit Beaubier, program director at FLYING WHALES.

Furthermore, CIRCOR has been entrusted with providing a comprehensive integrated fuel distribution, storage, control, monitoring, and gauging system for the LCA60T turbine generators. The fuel management system will also be compatible with the use of Sustainable Aviation Fuels (SAF). The collaboration discussions commenced in August 2021 to evaluate potential synergies for the fuel management system supply. Extensive dialogue and assessments led to the identification of optimizations to harness the innovations presented by CIRCOR. The proposal put forth by the CIRCOR team emerged as the most effective, ultimately resulting in the contract’s signing in September 2023.

Frédéric GREHAL, VP and general manager at CIRCOR, expresses pride and enthusiasm about the collaboration, stating, “We are really proud to be given the opportunity to be on board of such a disruptive project whose development represents a major step for us. All our employees are excited about it, and we have full support from our corporate.”

Image Caption: L-R: Mr Gréhal, VP General Manager of CIRCOR France, and Mr Guibout, Vice CEO of Flying Whales, signing the helium valve contract.