The E-PROPS company designs, tests, manufactures and sells hi-tech Carbon and Carbon-Titanium propellers for light aviation [airplanes, LSA, ultralights, delta trikes, gyros, paramotors, paratrikes,
VTOL, multicopters, drones], and other carbon aeronautical parts.
1 - The company in a few numbers
2 - Summary
3 - Brief history
4 - Detailed history
5 - Some references
6 - E-PROPS supports UNICEF
1 - The company in a few numbers
- HELICES E-PROPS (SAS ELECTRAVIA) : company created in 2008
by 3 aviation enthousiasts
- Team : 40 aeronautical engineers and technicians
= 2200 m²
on Sisteron airfield (LFNS), Provence, France
- Production : 45000 propellers blades / year
- E-Props propellers equip 220 types of aircraft and ultralights / LSA
and 150 paramotors brands
- E-Props is the world leader in propellers for paramotors.
- The E-PROPS company is directly working with 35 major aircraft manufacturers
- E-PROPS exports 87%
of its production to 82 different countries
2 - Summary
Created in 2008, the company Helices E-Props designs, tests and manufactures Hi-Tech Carbon and Carbon-Titanium propellers for light aviation: Aircraft, ULM, Paramotors, UAVs and Multicopters,
as well as many other carbon parts.
The team of 40 aeronautical engineers and technicians produce more than 45000 propeller blades per year in ultra-modern 2200 m²
workshops located at the Sisteron aerodrome, Provence, France (LFNS).
E-Props are the lightest propellers in the world.
In just a few years, E-Props has become the world leader in propellers for paramotors.
35 ultralight and airplane manufacturers have chosen E-Props to equip their aircraft.
Thousands of E-Props propellers, very solid & very quiet, offering exceptional performance, certified ASTM F2506-13, are now in use in 82 countries.
Today, Helices E-Props is the first French equipment manufacturer in non-certified aviation (turnover, production of parts, number of employees, export countries).
3 - Brief History
The ELECTRAVIA - E-PROPS company is also known for its electric motorizations systems developed for leisure aviation : engines, controllers, dedicated instruments, batteries BMS and dedicated propellers,
as well as for aircraft equipped with these new successful and silent propulsion systems made between 2008 and 2014.
During 6 years, 70 aircraft with electric engines have been developed by the team
, including the famous "ELECTRA" (1rst worldwide 100% electric aircraft, 1rst flight in December 2007),
the CRI-CRI Cristaline (1rst worldwide electric twin-engines, world speed record for electric aircraft from 2010 to 2018), the E-FENIX (1rst worldwide electric two-seater paratrike),
the E-SPIDER (1rst worldwide electric two-seater paramotor), the ELECTRO-LIGHT (electric motoglider range 1h30)...
At the same time, the E-PROPS propellers, first made of wood and then quickly made of carbon, met with increasing success.
At present, the company has temporarily suspended its works on electric systems, while waiting for batteries allowing a bigger range.
The team is now dedicated to the design and manufacture of E-PROPS high-tech carbon propellers and certain other carbon aeronautical parts
Since 2018, E-PROPS offers 4,400 models of ultra-light propellers for paramotors and has become the world leader in this type of propeller.
In 2020, a range of more than 100,000 references of hi-tech carbon propellers for
Aircraft / Ultralights was released.
=> read here the WORD of the PRESIDENT
3 - Detailed History
- October 2006 : beginning of the ELECTRAVIA project, before to create the company. Project led by Anne Lavrand, Christian Vandamme and Jérémie Buiatti.
- December 2007 : Electra, the first 100 % electric aircraft in the world, makes a 48 mn first flight pilot Christian Vandamme. A immediate international recognition !
- September 2008: official creation of the ELECTRAVIA - HELICES E-PROPS company
- August 2009 : wooden propellers Hélices E-PROPS on the market.
- September 2010 : world speed record [262 km/h] with electric MC15E Cri-Cri (Pilot Hugues Duval) with electric E-MOTOR engines and contrarotative E-PROPS propellers.
- November 2010 : new premises with photovoltaic roof, energy-plus buidlings, on an airfield in Provence : Sisteron - Vaumeilh (LNFS).
- March 2011 : first flights electric paratrike Kermelec with very quiet E-PROPS propeller.
- May 2011 : E-Fenix, first 2-seater paratrike in the world with QD2 E-PROPS propeller.
- June 2011 : new world speed record [283 km/h] with electric MC15E Cri-Cri during the 2011 Paris Air Show.
- August 2011 : flight tests of the MC30E Firefly with E-PROPS with special designs.
- December 2011 : first flights of electric motorglider ElectroLight 2, demonstrator of ELECTRAVIA's innovations with very quiet E-PROPS propeller.
- February 2012 : new range of very light and innovative carbon propellers E-PROPS NG for paramotors
Design in digital wind tunnel, optimization with the LmPTR software, elaboration of manufacturing's processes, tests (numerous!) and materials choices,
implementation of tools and equipments, brought out of the first models, ground tests then in flight tests : ELECTRAVIA carbon propellers have required 3 years of relentless works,
7 days a week, to succeed in finalizing them. Many tests, some failures, some successes, then still tests, compelling periods followed by discouragement's moments,
to obtain at the end an efficient manufacturing"s process and very light and efficient carbon propellers. The propellers of 3rd generation !
- June 2012 : first flights and presentation in a big airshow (Mondial de Paramoteurs de Basse-Ham 2012) of the 1rst electric powered 2-seaters paraglider, the E-SPIDER,
with QD2 E-PROPS propeller.
- September 2012 : new propeller ground ajustable 4-blades in carbon EXCALIBUR for ROTAX engines family 912.
- June 2013 : first PLUG'n'FLY propellers, specific for PPG.
- October 2013 : 20 models allow to answer to a lot of needs. The E-Props propellers are now marketed in 30 countries.
- January 2014 : between July 2013 et January 2014, a first fatigue tests campaign has validated a MTBO for the carbon E-Props propeller of 2.000 Hours.
- March 2014 : the Electravia team has decided to suspend its activities of development, integration and marketing of electric motorizations for aircraft,
in order to dedicate itself completely to the manufacturing of its carbon E-Props propellers. Electravia is waiting for better batteries, to increase the flight time and reduce the charge time.
- October 2014 : a new worskop is built, and now the company has a total of 1.700 m², dedicated to propellers manufacturing.
- March 2015 : the E-Props propellers have a great success all over the world (more than 50 countries). Those propellers are the lightest on the market.
- Sept 2015 : the team is composed of 12 people.
- March 2016 : E-Props presents its new propeller, EXCALIBUR-6 (6-blades), with a special H²D concept.
It is designed on about the same principle as some anti-torque tail rotors of helicopters, to significantly reduce vibrations and noise.
This propeller has a thrust of 350 kg (on a 150 hp engine). An immediate great success !
- May 2016 : E-Props on Facebook => www.facebook.com/fly.eprops
- June 2016 : E-Props has now 19 people for the design, manufacturing and marketing of the propellers.
The annual production's capacité is 7.500 carbon blades in 1.700 m² workshops. The E-Props propellers are sold in 56 different countries.
A great success due to a lot of work and passion !
- October 2016 : 20 people are now working for E-Props. The company ensures the production monitoring by RFID and KANBAN method.
Beginning of the works to realize new workshops, in order to multiply by 4 the yearly production (target at the end of 2017 : 30.000 blades / year).
- May 2017 : beginning of the building of new workshops (curing and injection).
The production capacity is growing from 12.500 to 18.500 blades/year, always increasing up to the goal of 30.000 blades/year at the end of the year 2017.
Production of some models is suspended to produce more of the common models.
- July 2017 : E-PROPS has implemented two new production equipment :
- a machining centre custom designed and built to allow the dimensional analysis, the rectification and the finish of the carbon parts automatically,
without dismantling of the part. It is equipped with a directional brooch on 5-axis programmed according to the digital definition of the part, with a wide tool store.
The precision of measure by the scanner laser is of 5/100th of millimeter.
- a professional 3D printer, in order to realize equipments, molds, prototypes and of pre-series parts, as well as lighter functional components.
- December 2017 : the production capacity is now 22.500 blades/year, increasing to the target of 30.000 blades/year.
E-Props propellers are now sold in 70 countries and equipped more than 200 different models of ultralights / LSA and 350 paramotors brands. The company counts from now on 23 employees.
- February 2018 : release of the new range of PLUG'n'FLY propellers with SCIMITAR design : even lighter (less than 410 gr for the lightest), more thrust and less noise.
- March 2018 : Thousands of carbon propellers for all engines and reducers, in 12 different diameters, discounts and shipping costs offered all over the world !
- July 2018 : to further its development, ELECTRAVIA recruits. The company increases its staff to 25 employees (including 6 at design department).
- September 2018 : the ELECTRAVIA - HELICES E-PROPS company is celebrating its 10th years !
- March 2019 : 28 people are working at E-PROPS.
The company is following its development in several countries (80) and is working on many projects with major companies and research laboratories.
- September 2019 : the new workshops, tools, molds and equipments allow now to produce 45.000 blades / year. An exceptional industrial capacité in the leisure aviation's field.
- December 2019 : Christian Vandamme retires, well deserved ! Thanks to him for all these years within the company.
- April 2020: 32 employees, including 10 in the design office, produce 45 000 propeller blades per year in ultra-modern 2 200 m² workshops.
Release of the new range of propellers for airplanes / ultralights (V20) : lighter, even stronger and more efficient. In total : 102 600 references !
VIDEO : E-PROPS V20 range
- October 2020 : E-Props employees celebrate their 100,000th carbon propeller blade !
- November 2020: hiring of a test pilot to carry out flight tests of the propellers, in particular the range of in flight variable pitch propellers (GLORIEUSE).
- February 2021: first prototypes of landing gear made of composite materials, ultra-light and robust. E-Props continues its work in order to
propose solutions for ever lighter and more efficient aviation.
- June 2021 : Electravia laureate of the French "France Relance Plan - Territoires d'Industrie". A major funding to help rapidly build a new intelligent and eco-responsible
factory of 3000 m² including CNC machining centers, robots and additive manufacturing machines. These new workshops will allow the hiring of 35 new employees, bringing the
company's workforce to 70. The company, which exports 85% of its production, plans to triple its current turnover within 3 years and from its current production of 45,000 carbon
composite parts per year to more than 150,000.
... and the story goes on !
Development of the company those last years :
5 - Some references
The E-PROPS team is working on some research programs with French laboratories :
- ONERA : Office National d'Etudes et de Recherches Aéronspatiales (The French Aerospace Lab)
- CEA : Commissariat à l'Energie Atomique
- CNES : Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales
- CNRS : Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique
- IFREMER : Institut Français de Recherche pour l'Exploitation de la Mer
The E-PROPS company is also working for major companies, on different projects requiring expertise in propellers.
Those projects are submitted to Non Disclosure Agreements, and thus cannot be detailled here.
6 - E-PROPS supports UNICEF
Since 2017, E-PROPS engages with UNICEF to help children around the world