World's Most Powerful Jet Engine Takes Off; The GE90-115B Completes Its First Flight, On Track For Certification
MOJAVE, California - Today, the world's most powerful jet engine, being developed by GE Aircraft Engines (GEAE), completed its first flight aboard GEAE's unique Boeing 747 Flying Testbed in Mojave, California.
"The engine performed flawlessly during its first flight," said Chaker Chahrour, general manager of the GE90 Project Department. "The engine is on track to support the first flight aboard Boeing's 777-300ER, which will occur early next year."
During the two hour and thirteen minute historic flight, the GE90-115B, the engine for Boeing's longer-range 777 airplanes, the 777-300ER and 777-200LR, completed several throttle and performance assessments to measure the engine's in-flight characteristics. The test is the first in a series of 30 planned flights totaling 150 hours.
The tests will evaluate altitude performance, air start surveys, and operability transients. In addition, the tests will measure performance of the full authority digital electronic control (FADEC), acceleration time and performance during maneuvers.
Air France, Japan Airlines, All Nippon Airways, EVA Air, International Lease Finance Corporation, and GE Capital Aviation Services have ordered a total of 49 firm 777 longer-range airplanes powered by the GE90-115B. The engine orders are valued at more than $2 billion.
GEAE modified its 747 testbed with structural changes to handle the engine's higher thrust. In addition, GEAE installed a new flight inlet, fan cowling to accommodate the larger fan diameter, and modified GE90 thrust reverser provided by Boeing.
The GE90-115B is on schedule for FAR33 type certification rated at 115,000 pounds (511 kN) thrust by the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and the European Community's Joint Airworthiness Authorities later this year. Airplane certification, first delivery, and entry into service of the 777-300ER are scheduled for 2004. Snecma Moteurs, IHI and FiatAvio are participants on the GE90-115B engine program. The GE90-115B is the exclusive powerplant for Boeing's 777-300ER and 777-200LR twinjets.
GEAE, a division of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), is the world's leading manufacturer of jet engines for civil and military aircraft, including engines produced by CFM International, a 50/50 joint company of Snecma Moteurs of France and GE. GEAE also manufactures gas turbines, derived from its highly successful jet engine programs, for marine and industrial applications. In addition, GEAE provides comprehensive maintenance support, through its GE Engine Services operation, for GE and non-GE jet engines in service throughout the world. Visit GEAE online at: http://www.geae.com.