GE90 Maturation Program Unique to Commercial Aviation
FARNBOROUGH -- For its highest-thrust GE90 engine, General Electric Company is successfully progressing with an ambitious engine maturation test program like no other in commercial aviation.
In June, the GE90-115B maturation program expanded to GE's Xiamen, China, facility--the fourth country to test the engine. The maturation program allows GE, through ground testing, to simulate the engine in service years ahead of actual airline operations.
The GE90-115B, rated at an unprecedented 115,000 pounds of thrust, entered service on Boeing's 777-300ER in 2004. Already, GE90-115B engines in the maturation program have accumulated more than 25,000 cycles--simulating more than 15 years of a fleet-leader engine in airline service.
GE90-115B engines in the program will ultimately accumulate 40,000 cycles and undergo five shop visits by 2009--simulating 30 years of typical airline service.
"We believe we've developed a new way to mature new jet engines," said Scott Donnelly, president and CEO of GE - Aviation. "The GE90-115B maturation program has become a blueprint for how we will mature our new high-thrust commercial engines."
In addition to the China facility, GE90-115B maturation testing is being conducted at GE's test facility in Peebles, Ohio, at IHI facilities in Japan, and at Snecma facilities in France. In 2007, additional tests begin at the National Institute for Aerospace Technology in Madrid, Spain.
"This program will help us to identify repair development needs before the first GE90-115B engine comes in for its initial shop visit in mid-2009," said Tom Wygle, general manager of the GE90 Project.
The fleet leader in the maturation test has accumulated more than 4,500 cycles and is nearing its second scheduled shop visit. The second GE90-115B engine in the program completed 3,000 cycles and three 330-minute diversions as part of an extended-range twin operations (ETOPS) demonstration.
The GE90-115B service entry is one of the most successful in aviation history. The engines have accumulated more than 365,000 hours and 64,000 cycles with no forced engine removals and no in-flight shutdowns--a remarkable achievement for a new jet engine.
The GE90-115B is part of GE's "ecomagination" product portfolio--GE's commitment to develop new, cost-effective technologies that enhance customers' environmental and operating performance. Snecma of France, Avio S.p.A. of Italy, and IHI of Japan are revenue-sharing participants.
GE - Aviation, an operating unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), is one of the world's leading manufacturers of jet engines for civil and military aircraft. GE also is a world-leading provider of maintenance and support services for jet engines.