"The goal of ‘RETAX’ is to explore intrinsically safe and efficient solutions for mid-size rotorcraft autonomous
taxiing on ground, minimizing the overall weight of the system, based on an electrically-powered motorized
wheel integrated with the landing gear. Subsequently to select the most promising solution and develop it into
a technical demonstrator to be tested and verified.
The former experience of Michelin in electric-drive solutions for motorized cars, busses and aircraft will be
used and translated into a rotorcraft electric taxiing system. A high level of integration and performance will
have to be reached in order to be able to achieve an optimal solution. A key success factor will be the control
of the complete chain, from the power electronic to the wheel, through electrical motor and gearbox in order to
reach the global optimization customized for this specific application.
After a preliminary study to define the optimum feasible concept and architecture for the motorized wheel and
power electronics, including the voltage level choice (28 Vdc or 270 Vdc), a detailed analysis and simulation of
the intended solution will be performed.
A real demonstrator of the electric-drive system will be designed, engineered and built to physically test and
prove the intended performance, the fulfilment of all requirements and also to calibrate the simulation models.
The protections for high-voltage human safety (270 Vdc) will be included in the demonstrator, if high voltage is
used. An extrapolation study towards larger size rotorcraft will be performed.
This feasibility demonstration of electrically driven rotorcraft ground taxiing in accordance with Clean Sky
electrification objectives will be a significant step towards greener rotorcraft operations, bringing this
technology closer to the market, and creating European competitive advantage."
Fields of science
Call for proposal
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