Catalyst™ engine certification testing about to begin
First engine to test now running at full power as second engine nears completion
GENEVA, SWITZERLAND | May 28, 2018
GE Aviation will begin certification testing in the upcoming weeks on its newest turboprop engine, the Catalyst.
Engine testing is proceeding as planned. Since December, GE engineers have run the engine 60 hours, advancing from idle to full-power testing this spring and generating critical data on the engine. Component certification testing is imminent and will be followed by engine certification testing.
The first test engine is currently installed in an 800-channel test rig at the Czech Technical University’s (CVUT) Centre of Aerospace and Space Technology in Prague. Initial testing on this engine will conclude later this summer.
“The engine is running well and the hardware looks great,” said Brad Mottier, president and general manager of GE Aviation's BGA and Integrated Systems organization. “Performance is at or above expectations. We look forward to altitude and ingestion tests which will kick off our certification program.”
Assembly work on the second Catalyst is near completion and the engine is scheduled to run this summer. It will be sent to Canada later this year for altitude testing.
“Testing continues as planned and has demonstrated that we are delivering on our commitments to the market,” said Paul Corkery, general manager of GE Aviation turboprops. “We are happy with how the engine has performed to date.”
The Catalyst is the first all-new, clean-sheet engine in more than 30 years in the BGA market. The 1,240 SHP-rated engine is part of GE’s family of turboprop engines aimed at BGA aircraft in the 1,000-1,600 SHP range. There are currently 79 patented technologies. By utilizing technologies proven on GE’s larger commercial engines, the Catalyst balances “all new” with “low risk and high value.”
The engine features an industry-best 16:1 overall pressure ratio, enabling the engine to achieve as much as 20 percent lower fuel burn and 10 percent higher cruise power compared to competitor offerings in the same size class. At 4,000 hours, it offers 33 percent more time between overhaul than its leading competitor.
In March, GE Aviation announced the new name.
“The Catalyst engine is redefining what a turboprop engine can do for pilots, airframers and operators in Business and General Aviation,” said Mottier. “It acts as a catalyst in an industry segment that has seen very little technology infusion in decades.”
The Catalyst engine's proven technology developed from GE’s large commercial and regional engines has reduced engine development risk and timing. It is the first turboprop engine in its class to introduce two stages of variable stator vanes and cooled high-pressure turbine blades, proven technologies developed by GE in its large commercial engines and flown more than 1.3 billion flight hours. With the use of advanced 3-dimensional aerodynamics, improved materials, and cooled turbine technologies, the Catalyst engine will deliver significantly higher efficiency, as well as greater performance and durability than other engines in its class.
The Catalyst engine includes more printed components than any production engine in aviation history. A total of 855 conventionally manufactured parts has been reduced to 12 additive parts, including sumps, bearing housings, frames, exhaust case, combustor liner, heat exchangers and stationary flow path components. Additive components reduce the Catalyst's weight by 5 percent while contributing a 1 percent improvement in specific fuel consumption (SFC).
The engine will power Textron Aviation’s new Cessna Denali. By the time the Denali enters service in 2020, the engine will have completed more than 2000 hours of testing.
When installed on the Denali, these engine efficiencies allow for a larger cabin experience with a comfortable 6000-foot cabin altitude at a 30,000-foot cruising altitude, as well as class-leading, low cost of operation compared to smaller aircraft in the category.
Learn more about the Catalyst: https://www.geaviation.com/bga/engines/ge-catalyst
About GE Aviation
GE Aviation, an operating unit of GE (NYSE: GE), is a world-leading provider of jet and turboprop engines, components and integrated systems for commercial, military, business and general aviation aircraft. GE Aviation has a global service network to support these offerings. For more information, visit us at www.ge.com/aviation. Follow GE Aviation on Twitter at http://twitter.com/GEAviation and YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/user/GEAviation.
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