ISTANBUL, TURKEY -- GE has taken yet another step to contribute to aviation R&D structure in Turkey. Established under the GE Aviation Turkey Technology Center, located in Tubitak Marmara Teknokent Free Zone, the Additive Manufacturing Technologies R&D Lab was inaugurated on November 16 with the participation of Mr. Mustafa Varank, Minister of Technology and GE executives. Technology development efforts at the laboratory will focus on next-gen manufacturing technologies performed on industrial metal additive manufacturing machines manufactured by GE Additive.

Additive manufacturing is disrupting industries and accelerating the way products are designed and manufactured. The transformative approach to industrial production enables the creation of lighter, stronger parts and systems. GE has more than 20 years of experience in additive manufacturing and is uniquely poised to lead in this manufacturing process. Utilizing the GE Aviation Additive Manufacturing Technologies R&D Lab, GE extends its global knowledge in Turkey by contributing to its goal to increase the intensity of R&D efforts.

A Total of $15M USD R&D Investment

Regarding the new laboratory, Dr. Aybike Molbay, General Manager of GE Aviation Turkey Technology Center stated in her speech:

“As a pioneer and super-user of additive technology ourselves, we know what it takes to design and manufacture additive parts and systems. We are all proud to see that know-how and invaluable knowledge in additive is conveyed to Turkey, following the USA and Italy. Currently, 3 million engineering hours of work is being undertaken by over 400 qualified Turkish engineers at GE Aviation Turkey Technology Center where we carry out aviation engineering and technology programs for 18 years, and our total investment has exceeded $15 million USD with this lab. We will contribute to design and development activities for aircraft engine parts in world-class standards, matching with Additive Manufacturing Technologies, at the GE Aviation Additive Manufacturing Technologies Lab where we will conduct technology development programs as part of a global team.

The exciting journey of additive manufacturing

Some of the biggest benefits offered by additive manufacturing is that it offers freedom in companies’ processes, minimizing materials waste and offering engineers the opportunity to design things in novel ways.

CFM International*’s LEAP aircraft engine marks the first step of the additive manufacturing journey in the aviation industry. For the first time, this engine features an additively manufactured fuel nozzle tip. This part used to be made up of 20 different parts, and with additive it is now manufactured in one single piece. This development was followed by GE’s Catalyst Turboprop engine, which includes more printed components than any production engine in aviation history. More than 800 conventionally manufactured parts has been reduced to 12 additive parts, reducing the Catalyst's weight by 5 percent while contributing a 1 percent improvement in specific fuel consumption.

With the contributions from the GE Aviation Additive Manufacturing Technologies R&D Lab opened, development activities will be undertaken to contribute to the future of this technology. Future aircraft engine technologies will be developed in this laboratory.  

About GE Turkey Technology Center 

As one of the four engineering centers of GE Aviation, GE Aviation Turkey Technology Center has been operating for 18 years. Over 400 Turkish engineers now work together on an extensive range of engines including commercial, military and industrial on fields such as design, R&D, production and repair technologies and software. The number of engineers employed for software and additive manufacturing technologies has exceeded 100 as of 2018 at the center where engineers have proven themselves with their education and engineering skills. One-third of the employees at Additive Manufacturing Technologies R&D Lab includes competent engineers with a PhD degree. 

*CFM International is a 50/50 joint company between GE Aviation and Safran Aircraft Engines.