GE Honda Aero Engines’ plant in Burlington, N.C., received an FAA production certificate for the HF120 engine that will power the HondaJet and other light business jets. The company obtained FAA approval for the engine in December 2013 and this latest certification means that the Honda Aero Inc. facility demonstrated the repeated ability to build HF120s to type-design specifications, meaning the FAA no longer needs to inspect every engine before it is shipped to the customer.
“This is a significant milestone that will enable GE Honda to continue to build momentum for the HF120 turbofan engine program,” said GE Honda Aero Engines president Steve Shaknaitis. “With our primary production site now fully certified, we can focus on maximizing our production capabilities.”
Initial HF120 production was performed at GE’s Lynn, Mass. facility, though assembly began to shift to Burlington late last year under FAA oversight. In addition to engine assembly, the Burlington plant features a test cell, repair and overhaul functions and parts warehousing.
GE Honda Aero Engines’ MRO facility will also be located at the Honda Aero plant in Burlington, and the company has developed a network of authorized service providers to prepare support for customers in the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Europe.
FAA certification of the HondaJet, the first application for the HF120, is expected in the first quarter. The HF120 has also been selected as a retrofit engine for Sierra Industries’ Sapphire upgrade program for legacy Cessna CitationJet platforms.