General Electric is preparing its new Passport engine for a first test run next month, the company said yesterday at EBACE. Intended to power the Bombardier Global 7000 and 8000, the Passport 20 is scheduled for certification in 2015. Assembly of the first engine began in March, and the low-pressure turbine was installed last week. The 52-inch fan section, one of five blisk (single-piece blade disk) stages, is fitted next, followed by the composite fan case.
The engine forms an integrated propulsion system with a slimline nacelle designed in partnership with Nexcelle, itself a joint venture between GE and French engine manufacturer Snecma. The lightweight, low-drag nacelle has an outward-opening cowl for easy access.
Passport has been developed from General Electric’s eCore technology, which is also used in the CFM Leap engine for narrowbody airliners. Two eCore units have been running for more than 250 hours to assist with Passport certification, and a total of eight complete engines will be used in the test and validation process. After assembly is completed, the first test engine will be installed next month in the outdoor rig on Site 3B at GE’s Peebles, Ohio, facility. Next year a Passport engine will begin flight-testing using the company’s Boeing 747 testbed.