From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search

SAFEGE is an acronym for the French consortium Société Anonyme Française d' Etude de Gestion et d' Entreprises (English: French Limited Company for the Study of Management and Business) and is pronounced SAY-fij in English.


The consortium, consisting of 25 companies, including the tire-maker Michelin and the Renault automotive company, is a consulting and engineering bureau. It was formed in 1919 as Société Auxiliaire Française d'Électricité, Gaz et Eau, a holding company with interests in private water, gas, and electricity production and distribution. When in 1947, these public utilities were nationalised, the company became the engineering and consulting office which it is today, taking the name Société Anonyme Française d'Études, de Gestion et d'Entreprises.

Today the company is a subsidiary of Suez Environnement and specialises as a consultancy in water and environmental engineering,[1] but not only (bought IDC, etc.[2]) Its main market is France, with 60% of the turnover. It also is a leader in several consortias beneficiaires of lots from the EC FWCs (6, 11 and coleading the 2).[vague]

SAFEGE type monorail[edit]

The SAFEGE test track at Châteauneuf-sur-Loire

SAFEGE gained international recognition for its design of a suspended monorail in the 1960s. The design team was headed by Lucien Chadenson.

Design concept[edit]

The design of the system entails suspending passenger cars beneath rubber-tired wheel carriages of the type used more conventionally in the Paris Metro. The carriages are enclosed and supported by a box-like track or beam, with an opening in the bottom. The rubber wheels of the train run inside the track, supported by flanges on the bottom of the beam.

Unlike previous suspended monorails like the Schwebebahn in Wuppertal, Germany, the tracks are not exposed to inclement weather, and do not need any cleaning or ice-removal systems. This advantage enables them to run in cities where ice and other conditions would impair the reliability of the system.

Test installation[edit]

The test track built in France by SAFEGE in 1959, was a 1.4 kilometre monorail line that featured prominently in the 1966 movie adaptation of Fahrenheit 451, directed by François Truffaut.[3]Although the track was dismantled not long thereafter, the original car survived longer.[4][5]

Market position[edit]

SAFEGE systems are the leading type of suspended railway currently in transit use, though this consists of just four installations of two different systems. Its chief and more numerous competitor in modern monorail applications are variations of the German-designed ALWEG system, in which the vehicles run on top of, and straddle, a solid beam.

The persevered car and track of the Higashiyama Zoo Monorail

SAFEGE type monorails in the world[edit]

The Shonan Monorail in Japan


  1. ^ The Web site is clearer about the figures:
  2. ^ The Web site shows some references:
  3. ^ Trenholm, Rich (2009-11-19). "The future is now: Sci-fi films in real locations". Cnet-uk. Fahrenheit 451 (1966). SAFEGE test track, Châteneuf-sur-Loire, near Orléans, France The monorail scenes were filmed on a now-demolished 1.4 km test track built in 1959 
  4. ^ Lambert, Randy. "Saran, France - SAFEGE Monorail...". Archived version of personal site hosted on now-defunct Yahoo! GeoCities; a photo essay of the derelict SAFEGE monorail cars now in storage in France. Archived from the original on October 20, 2009. Retrieved 2010-07-16. 
  5. ^ Zapato, Lyle (2004-12-11). "French Monorail Trash". Monorail Danger. 
  6. ^ a b Voice, David (2010). (1 ed.). Adam Gordon. p. 37. ISBN 978 1 874422 81 5.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^ Demery, Leroy. "Monorails in Japan: An Overview" (PDF). Retrieved 3 January 2017. 

External links[edit]