Liaison Blanc Blanc CEA Grenoble POMA
France – Grenoble – 2010


“Liaison Blanc-Blanc” is more than just a funicular railway, it is a mini mobile clean room, ISO 6 classified, which connects the two controlled environment areas of the Grenoble CEA over 250 metres.

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Scientific purpose
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The project

To move from one clean room to another on the Minatec scientific site in Grenoble, researchers had to follow a strict protocol, wasting valuable time. The solution proposed by POMA demonstrates the rope's ability to adapt to specific constraints. Unique in the world, this funicular railway called “blanc-blanc”, has an 8 m² cabin whose atmosphere is classified as “ultra-clean / Air ISO 6”, that is, it is highly protected against any intrusion of dust and microparticles.

Automatic, developed with extreme docking accuracy in mind, the funicular railway operates on demand, like an elevator, and carries 12 researchers and their ultra-sensitive microelectronic components smoothly from one room to another at 5 m/s.

Liaison Blanc / Blanc

In Motion

Liaison Blanc Blanc CEA Grenoble POMA





250 m

Difference in elevation

2,8 m



5 m/s

Cabin Capacity

12 passengers

taux de dispo

Availability rate


POMA, innovation

For the project

Cabin with a clean atmosphere

This funicular railway, unique in the world, has a cabin with a “clean” atmosphere, that is to say, in accordance with the required “ultra-cleanliness” conditions (ISO 6 air classification) that can carry up to 12 people. An airtight lock system was invented to allow researchers to transport electronic “chips” on silicon.

A world first


After ten months of construction, POMA, CEA and VÊPRES opened the world’s first rope-towed ultra-clean funicular railway in Grenoble.

An eco-responsible link

Smooth, silent and eco-responsible regarding electricity consumption – ambient air is treated as close as possible to users – this mode of transport is built on a “clean concept” model, that is, by responding to the specificities and constraints of working in a clean room.

Integration on the site

The construction of a 250-metre concrete viaduct supported by sixteen cylindrical beams, with a 5-metre difference in elevation, was not only more economical, but also made it possible to create a smooth pit suitable for the tyre rolling system,

Track with low ground coverage for ideal environmental integration and reduced earthmoving and site adjustments. The system is attached with clamps onto a rope that rotates in a loop: so there is only one drive system, no possible slippage, the adhesion is permanent.

Maintenance of the link


A 5-year maintenance contract
o Average availability of 99.37% since 2010
o Level 2-4 maintenance by POMA

Lisaison blanc/blanc in pictures

Liaison Blanc Blanc CEA Grenoble POMA
Liaison Blanc Blanc CEA Grenoble POMA
Liaison Blanc Blanc CEA Grenoble POMA
Liaison Blanc Blanc CEA Grenoble POMA

POMA special projects

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France – Lyon – 2018

POMA carried out the special inspection of the iconic funicular railway in Lyon. During the inspection, its carriers as well as the drive station were completely renovated and upgraded in SIGMA’s workshops, according to the SYTRAL guidelines aimed at “providing users with an even greater level of comfort, while preserving the line’s historic heritage”.


Hong Kong Wheel

China – Hong Kong – 2014

POMA produced the 45 cabins for the Hong Kong observation wheel in China. The observation wheel offers spectacular views over the bay and megacity centre, both during the day and at night.


Ain Dubai

United Arab Emirates – Dubai – 2020

For the world’s largest observation wheel, commissioned for the Dubai World Expo, POMA built 48 outsized capsules, the largest and heaviest ever produced. The teams came up with evermore ingenious product development solutions and met a very high level of customer demand.



England – Brighton – 2016

POMA designed and manufactured the entire pod and drive system of the world’s tallest observation tower, known as the British Airways i360. A unique concept, located on the Brighton seafront in the south of England.


Shenzhen Observation Wheel

China – Shenzhen – 2020

POMA produced the 28 capsules of the observation wheel for the Chinese megalopolis of Shenzhen. Developed specifically to withstand a very hot and humid climate, they presented a real technical challenge, which the group’s teams managed to overcome.


Miami Airport

United States – Miami – 2016

Miami International Airport inaugurated its two APMs in 2016 and 2017. The two APM trains travel 375 m and carry up to 12,000 passengers per hour between the main terminal and terminal E.


Cairo Airport

Egypt – Cairo – 2012

The expanding Cairo International Airport, one of the largest in the Middle East, wanted a high-performance link to connect its three airport terminals and to provide access to the car parks and shopping centre. The specifications for the construction of the MiniMetro® were speed, silence, comfort, availability and also environmental considerations.


London Eye

England – London – 2000

Right in the heart of London, on the banks of the River Thames, 32 rotating capsules climb to 135 m, taking visitors above the rooftops of London for an exceptional view of the entire capital.


The High Roller

United states – Las Vegas – 2014

Caesars Entertainment has entrusted the POMA Group with the design and manufacture of the High Roller observation wheel capsules. A flagship attraction of “The Linq”, a new urban and entertainment district in Las Vegas.