Skybus Becomes First North American Operator of Advanced CFM56-5B Tech Insertion Engine
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- U.S. low-fare carrier Skybus Airlines has taken delivery of a new Airbus A319 aircraft equipped with CFM56-5B Tech Insertion engines, making it the first North American operator to put the advanced configuration into revenue service. Improved technologies incorporated in the engine will help provide Skybus lower oxides of nitrogen (NOx) emissions in addition to better fuel consumption versus the base model, which will significantly lower C02 emissions.
CFM56-5B engines are produced by CFM International (CFM), a 50/50 joint company between Snecma (SAFRAN Group) and General Electric Company.
Skybus, the next generation of low-fare airlines, provides nonstop service with its fleet of CFM56-5B-powered Airbus A319 aircraft from its base in Columbus, Ohio, to cities throughout the United States. The airline has ordered a total of 65 A319s, in addition to operating leased aircraft. In January 2008, Skybus will begin major operations from its recently-announced second base at Piedmont Triad International Airport in North Carolina.
"We're excited to be the first airline to introduce the CFM56-5B Tech Insertion engine to the North American market," said Bill Diffenderffer, chief executive officer of Skybus. "Skybus believes absolutely that the airline industry is essentially a technology-oriented industry, and it starts with the technology in those engines. With Tech Insertion, CFM is delivering what it promised: unmatched reliability, longer time on wing, lower fuel burn, and lower emissions."
The CFM56 Tech Insertion program, which was certified on A320 family aircraft in September of this year, incorporates advanced technologies that provide operators with lower maintenance costs and better environmental performance. Improved analytic design tools enabled CFM to further improve the Tech Insertion combustor so that it will provide approximately 25 percent lower NOx emissions. As a result, this engine will meet the new International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Committee on Aviation Environmental Protection emissions standards (CAEP /6) scheduled to take effect in early 2008. In addition, the engine's 1 percent improvement in fuel consumption will also lower CO2, reducing these emissions by up to 200 tons per aircraft per year. Over the engine's life cycle, CFM56 Tech Insertion should also provide Skybus with longer time on wing and lower maintenance costs through enhanced durability.
The Airbus A319 program was launched in 1993 with the first aircraft entering service in 1996. It is the third derivative in the ever-popular A320 Family. Firm orders for the A320 Family - consisting of the 107-seat A318, 124-seat A319, 150-seat A320 and 185-seat A321 - currently stand at nearly 5,600 aircraft. Airbus is an EADS company
More than 2,850 CFM56-5B engines have been delivered to date, and the fleet is growing at a rate of about 32 engines per month. The engine's outstanding reliability, durability, low cost of ownership, and world-class customer and product support have led to its broad customer acceptance with low-cost carriers, mainline operators, and leasing companies worldwide. The CFM56-5B is the only engine that can power every model of the A320 family, from the small A318 up to the A321, with the same bill of materials, giving airlines a significant commonality advantage.