The engineering team for GE Aviation’s new GE9X turbofan has completed development of the new carbon fiber composite material that will allow the powerplant for Boeing’s new 777X airliner to use fewer, thinner fan blades. Combined with the use of new composite case technology developed for the GEnx program, the engine will be around 1,000 pounds lighter than its predecessor.
Pratt & Whitney and Alcoa recently have revealed that the fan blades of the PW1000G family of geared turbofans will consist mainly of aluminum alloy–an industry first.
Eaton has been selected by Rolls-Royce to continue providing its engine build-up for another Trent engine program, the Trent XWB-97. The 97,000 pound-thrust turbofan will power the new Airbus A350-1000 platform.
Pratt & Whitney on Sunday announced that is has managed to reduce fuel burn on the PW1100G-JM for the A320neo family by another 2 percent. Dubbed the PurePower Engine Advantage, the enhancement centers on improved aerodynamics and cooling.
Rolls-Royce here announced the first run of the Trent XWB-97 turbofan on Tuesday. Selected as the sole engine for the higher-thrust version for the Airbus A350-1000, The 97,000-lb-thrust Trent XWB-97 will begin test flights in 2016. Entry into service is pegged for 2017. The turbofan’s increased thrust is obtained by a combination of new high-temperature turbine technology, a larger core and advanced fan aerodynamics, Rolls-Royce (here at Hall 4 Stand H3) said.
The Engine Alliance, a 50-50 joint venture of GE and Pratt & Whitney, has received EASA approval for two new thrust ratings for the GP7200 turbofan engine, one of the two engines available to power the Airbus A380. The new ratings bring the GP7200 to four thrust rating configurations.
The FAA is superseding emergency AD 2014-12-52 for all Honeywell TFE731-4, -4R, -5AR, -5BR, -5R, -20R, -20AR, -20BR, -40, -40AR, -40R, -40BR, -50R and -60 turbofans. It required a review of the engine logbook maintenance records to determine if any affected engines are installed and also prohibited operation of an airplane with two or more affected engines that have second-stage low-pressure turbine (LPT2) blades with fewer than 250 operating hours since new.
The Bauhaus Luftfahrt aerospace think-tank in May unveiled a concept for a “propulsive fuselage” aircraft, opening a new possibility for fuel burn reduction. It is part of a European Union-funded project in cooperation with a number of research centers, as well as MTU Aero Engines and Airbus Group Innovations (OE13). The latter company is also studying a hybrid-power regional airliner with Rolls-Royce (Hall 4 Stand H3). Meanwhile, it is flying a hybrid-lift quadcopter demonstrator for unmanned military and civil missions, the Quadcruiser.
Snecma recently started flight-testing its Silvercrest turbofan on a modified Gulfstream II, a Snecma senior executive confirmed last week. AIN understands that the trials are taking place from Sierra Industries’ base in San Antonio, Texas. The maiden flight had been postponed several times but the delay is not expected to have any effect on the engine’s certification, planned for next year. The Silvercrest will power the Dassault Falcon 5X and Cessna Citation Longitude.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) reported last month that with 5.5 million flight hours recorded on turbofan engines between 2008 and 2012, only 280 powerplant incidents were recorded, or about one every 20,000 flight hours. Of those 280 occurrences, 98 percent could be classified as low risk; four were classified as medium risk, two as high risk and one as a very high risk. None, however, resulted in any injuries to passengers or crew.
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