Snecma plans soon to start another phase of open-rotor engine testing using a one-fifth scale model, in a research and technology effort that epitomizes how laborious developing a new commercial engine concept can be. The concept, based on contra-rotating high-speed propellers, may not find itself in service before 2025. Nevertheless, trials aimed at cutting noise while retaining the huge efficiency advantage of the open rotor’s architecture are well under way.
The European Aviation Safety Agency has issued type certification for the higher efficiency and thrust “package C” version of Rolls-Royce’s Trent 1000 engine. The approval comes ahead of the anticipated first flight of Boeing’s 787-9 widebody. The 74,000-pound-thrust turbofan is set to power Air New Zealand’s first 787-9 when the new version of the Dreamliner family enters service next year, and it is also available for the existing 787-8.
CFM International—the 50-50 joint venture between GE and France’s Snecma—has started testing the first full Leap turbofan engine, the company announced Friday. The Leap-1A—one of the powerplant choices for the Airbus A320neo—fired for the first time on September 4, two days ahead of schedule.
GE Aviation started testing its new fourth-generation composite fan blades for the new GE9X turbofan, the company announced last week. Chosen to power the new Boeing 777X, the 100,000-pound-thrust-class engine promises a 10-percent fuel burn improvement over the GE90-115B–the engine that powers the Boeing 777-300ER.
Engine maker Pratt & Whitney Canada (Stand 2009) is here at LABACE to highlight its engine support capabilities, which are primarily handled through the local service center at Sorocaba in the São Paulo region. Established in 1999, the Sorocaba facility is part of the global PWC support network, reporting to the West Virginia overhaul and service center, but is particularly involved in supporting the more than 2,000 PWC engines that are operational in Brazil.
StandardAero appointed Leo Mendoza as the new regional sales leader for its Latin American airlines and fleets business. Mendoza’s appointment complements the company’s objectives to expand its business footprint and overall investment in the Latin American region, augmenting its existing market leadership and highlighting its capabilities in turboprop and turbofan maintenance, repair and overhaul. Mendoza has a background in aviation sales management with Pratt & Whitney and MTU.
GE has completed its acquisition of Turin, Italy-based Avio’s aviation components and systems business for $3.4 billion. Renamed Avio Aero, the new division furthers GE’s participation and expertise in the areas of mechanical transmission systems, low-pressure turbines, combustion technology and automation systems. Avio Aero has content on several GE engines, ranging from the CT7/T700 turboshaft series for helicopters to the GE90 and GEnx turbofan engines for airliners.
The Australian Transport Safety Bureau (ATSB) on June 27 released the final report of its investigation into an uncontained engine failure aboard a Qantas Airbus A380 in November 2010 just after departure from Singapore.
Aero engines continue to represent “a robust investment opportunity” for those trading in the market for leased spares, according to the International Bureau of Aviation (IBA). However, the UK-based consultancy’s 2013 Engines Value Book, published last week, shows significant variations in engine values and shifts in demand for leased powerplants.
F-35 engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney has started sustainment planning for the aircraft’s F135 turbofan even as F-35s continue flight-testing. “The F135 program is in an interesting place,” Bennett Croswell, Pratt & Whitney Military Engines president, said at a Paris Air Show press briefing on June 19. “We’re in all three phases of the lifecycle of the program. We are still in development; we are producing F135 engines; and now we are in sustainment as well.”