Sud-Aviation (French pronunciation: ​[syd avjasjɔ̃], Southern Aviation) was a French state-owned aircraft manufacturer, originating from the merger of Sud-Est (SNCASE, or Société nationale des constructions aéronautiques du sud-est) and Sud-Ouest (SNCASO or Société nationale des constructions aéronautiques du sud-ouest) on 1 March 1957. Both companies had been formed from smaller privately owned corporations that had been nationalized into six regional design and manufacturing pools just prior to World War II.

State-owned corporation
Founded1 March 1957
FounderSNCASE Edit this on Wikidata
Defunct10 July 1970
HeadquartersToulouse, France
Key people
Maurice Papon (President, 1967–68)
ProductsJet aircraft
Sud Aviation SE.3130 Alouette II ZU-ALO in South Africa

From 1960, the firm started on the design of a supersonic transport version of the Caravelle, known as the Super-Caravelle. However, the projected cost of the project was so high that Sud Aviation, at the direction of the French and British governments, formed a consortium with BAC in November 1962 to merge their design and production efforts to create Concorde.

The company designed helicopters which went on to be built in large numbers, including the Alouette II (the first production helicopter powered by a gas turbine; first flight in 1955), the Puma (1965) and Gazelle (1967). In 1967 an agreement between the British and French governments arranged for joint production and procurement of the Puma and Gazelle, together with the British Westland Lynx.[1][2]

Sud Aviation merged with Nord Aviation and Société d'études et de réalisation d'engins balistiques (SÉREB) in 1970 to form the Aérospatiale company. Aérospatiale formed several large-scale international consortia, for example with British Aerospace and Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm to form Airbus, and ultimately merged into European aerospace company EADS in 2000. In January 2014, EADS was reorganised as Airbus Group.



  1. ^ "Written Answers: Helicopters (Anglo-French Agreement)". Hansard. 23 January 1967. Retrieved 17 August 2018.
  2. ^ "A Gyration of WG.13s". FLIGHT International. 15 August 1968. pp. 262–263. Retrieved 17 August 2018.

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