TRUEngine* LLP is now in full operation following its launch by both GE and CFM International* in September at the MRO Europe trade show in London. The TRUEngine LLP designation was created in response to customer requests for a reliable means of identifying life-limited parts (LLP) that have always operated in OEM configurations.
LLP – including rotating components such as disks, spools and shafts – are the most critical engine parts. LLP operate as part of a complex system in which other engine parts can affect their life capability. Life limits are established using a rigorous methodology that assesses individual LLP and the influences of other parts (i.e., influencing parts) in the engine system in which LLP operate.
To earn TRUEngine LLP designation, LLP are subjected to a rigorous back-to-birth records audit and engineering review to evaluate their configuration and maintenance history relative to airworthiness limitations substantiated by GE and documented in the engine manual. LLP are qualified at the part level and at a specific time-since-new and cycles-since-new interval.
“This extension of our TRUEngine program helps owners and operators support the value of their assets and assure optimized OEM technical support,” says Tom Levin, GE’s general manager of materials services.
“Independent studies show that engines maintained with OEM parts and repairs can retain as much as 50% higher asset values compared to engines that include non-OEM parts or repairs,” Levin explains.**
**Based on CFM, GE and independent third-party research.
The program rollout is continuing in stages, ultimately covering the CFM56*, CF34*, CF6*, GE90*, and GEnx* product lines. TRUEngine LLP documentation will accompany future LLP sold through GE Aviation’s materials business.
Additionally, TRUEngine LLP qualification is available to anyone in the industry, including MROs, brokers and airlines.
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Since its launch at the 2013 Paris Air Show, GE’s CF34 TRUEngine program has gained momentum quickly. Already attaining TRUEngine designation are more than 600 CF34 powerplants operated by 11 airlines and lessors, including Alitalia, Air Europa, Azul, Flybe, GoJet, Jetairfly, Jetscape, LOT, GE Capital Aviation Services (GECAS) and most recently Royal Jordanian Airlines and Azerbaijan Airlines.
“Our TRUEngine customers have made a firm commitment to OEM quality engine maintenance,” says Allen Paxson, GE’s general manager of the CF34 engine program. “We look forward to growing the CF34 TRUEngine family in the coming years.”
Royal Jordanian Airlines is one of the latest airlines – and the first in the Middle East/Africa region – to receive TRUEngine designation for its CF34 engines. The agreement between GE Aviation Services and Royal Jordanian was concluded during the Dubai Air Show in November. “The TRUEngine designation is a valuable way for us to maintain maximum value of our engines while affirming our commitment to OEM quality maintenance,” says Royal Jordanian President/CEO Amer Hadidi. “We are proud to be the first CF34 TRUEngine operator in the Middle East.”
GE has delivered more than 5,800 CF34 engines since they first entered service in 1992. The CF34 engine is in service with 200 operators in more than 70 countries. The engines have accumulated more than 97 million flight hours and 75 million cycles on Bombardier CRJ and Embraer E-Jet aircraft, setting the standard for dispatch reliability of 99.95%.
The TRUEngine program was first launched in 2008. Program wide, more than 8,300 GE and CFM engines operated by 113 airlines and lessors have now received TRUEngine designation.
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Training and retooling are nearly complete at GE Aviation’s service facility in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia as the shop remains on-track to begin CFM56-7B engine overhauls by the end of the year.
Until now, GE Aviation, Services – Malaysia has been equipped to overhaul CFM56-3 and CFM56-5B engines. The work required to add overhaul capabilities for the CFM56-7B began in December 2012.
“Those preparations have included identifying and procuring all the required tooling, fixtures and consumables, expanding the facility’s work area and upgrading the test cell to run the CFM56-7B engine,” says Suresh Shunmugam, GE’s overhaul facility leader in Malaysia.
Preparations also included sending 25 highly-skilled mechanics and leaders from Kuala Lumpur to Cardiff, Wales for specialized training at the GE overhaul facility there.
“Our overhaul facility in Malaysia becomes the fourth GE shop equipped for CFM56-7B overhauls, alongside Wales in the UK, Celma in Brazil, and Strother in Kansas, USA,” adds Shunmugam. “Our customers, including Malaysia Airlines, AirAsia, Air India and nearly 50 other operators throughout the region, will benefit from having an overhaul facility with CFM56-7B capability so close.”
The shop expects to receive upgraded certification from regulatory agencies DC Malaysia, FAA and EASA in the next few weeks as it readies to induct CFM56-7B engines by year-end.
Take a look inside GE Aviation, Services - Malaysia, where GE's professionals provide best-in-class overhaul and repair services for CFM56-3/-5 engines - and soon for CFM56-7.
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One of the 14 new Industrial Internet “Predictivity” technologies launched by GE in October is aimed at optimizing operating efficiencies within the aviation industry.
Flight Efficiency Services, as it’s called, effectively repositions GE Aviation’s “beyond the core” services – such as Fuel & Carbon Solutions – into a new portfolio of products equipped to harness the power of the Industrial Internet and employ software and analytics to significantly improve an airline’s overall efficiency.
“GE’s Flight Efficiency Services collects real-time data generated by the aircraft and applies proprietary techniques that use historic intelligence to help drive airlines’ business strategies,” says Alan Caslavka, president of Avionics & Digital Systems for GE Aviation. “Aircraft performance analytics are used to reveal patterns, transforming data into actionable insights that improve operations.”
Flight Efficiency Services addresses four specific areas of operation where airlines can improve efficiencies:
Launch customers already utilizing GE’s Flight Efficiency Services include GOL Airlines, EVA Airways and Garuda Indonesia Airlines. GE is working with Brazil’s GOL Airlines to reduce operating costs by $100 million over five years. The entire fleets of both EVA and Garuda Indonesia are utilizing GE Aviation’s fuel management services.
“As part of our Quantum Leap initiative to be the best airline and global player, Garuda Indonesia continuously seeks ways to improve its services and operation,” said Emirsyah Satar, president & CEO of Garuda Indonesia. “The fuel efficiency solution from GE will help us operate more efficiently, save fuel costs and reduce carbon emissions, which are important for our sustainable growth."
Following a two-year research initiative, a multi-year airspace efficiency program is being rolled out in Brazil and is expected to result in substantial savings in fuel and emissions. Dubbed “Green Skies of Brazil,” the program evolved as a collaborative effort among many of Brazil’s aviation stakeholders and representatives from GE. It involves the deployment of Required Navigation Performance (RNP) operational procedures at 10 Brazilian airports. With air travel in the country forecast to grow 6.5 percent annually over the next decade, and with Brazil hosting both the World Cup in 2014 and the Olympic Games in 2016, greater airspace efficiency there is an urgent need.
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GE Aviation is revolutionizing the age-old rules of manufacturing and design. As this video explains, GE engineers are moving beyond traditional subtractive manufacturing that uses machines like mills and drills. Today engineers employ additive manufacturing, a remarkable 3D printing technology that allows parts once thought impossible to build to instead be grown from the ground up.
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It was a big step forward – and two days ahead of schedule – as the new CFM LEAP-1A engine started up for the first time at GE’s test site in Peebles, Ohio on September 4. Following a series of break-in runs, the engine was operating smoothly and reached full take-off thrust.
LEAP-1A is the powerplant for the Airbus A320neo. This first run marked the start of a test and certification program involving 60 test engines for all LEAP variants. In conjunction with the Airbus variant, which is scheduled to enter commercial service in 2016, CFM is developing an almost identical variant called the LEAP-1C for the COMAC C919 aircraft, and a LEAP-1B version for the Boeing 737MAX, which is scheduled for service entry in late 2017.
Chaker Chahrour, executive vice president of CFM, says thousands of hours of component testing conducted over the past five years led up to September’s initial ground test in Peebles. “Everything we have seen tells us the LEAP engine is going to deliver all we promised, and much more. Now we get to put it through its paces in the most comprehensive test program we have ever undertaken.”
The A320neo engine variant is set to begin flight tests on GE’s Boeing 747 flying testbed in September 2014, with FAR33 engine certification expected the following summer. First flight on the Airbus A320neo is targeted for the third quarter of 2015 with entry-into-service the following year.
“By the time this engine enters service, we will have simulated more than 15 years of airline service with 60 different engine builds,” Chahrour says.
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Ethiopian Airlines has signed an OnPoint* solution agreement with GE Aviation for the maintenance, repair and overhaul of its GE90 engines. Under terms of the agreement, GE will maintain Ethiopian’s GE90 engines that power its 16 Boeing 777 aircraft.
"We are pleased to have reached an agreement on the maintenance of our GE90 engines, says Tewolde GebreMariam, chief executive officer of Ethiopian Airlines. “The OnPoint solution agreement will help us in optimizing our maintenance cost and assists for maintaining a higher dispatch reliability of the B777 fleet.
“Our MRO has also developed the full capability to overhaul CFM56-3/-7B engines that power B737 Classic and Next Generation airplanes with the assistance and support of GE Aviation. This OnPoint solution agreement will further build our growing relationship with our longtime partner GE Aviation.”
Paul McElhinney, president of GE Aviation’s Services operation, concurs. “Ethiopian Airlines and GE Aviation have forged a strong relationship over the last decade as the airline has revitalized its fleet with GE90- and GEnx-powered aircraft. This MRO services agreement will enable Ethiopian Airlines to have OEM-quality MRO service and support to ensure optimal engine performance.”
Ethiopian Airlines is the fastest growing and most profitable airline in Africa, flying the region’s youngest and most modern fleet to more than 76 international destinations across six continents. Ethiopian’s fleet includes Boeing 787, 777-200LR, 777-300ER, 777-F and Bombardier Q-400 aircraft.
GE’s OnPoint solutions are customized service agreements tailored to the operational and financial needs of each customer for any size fleet. These agreements are designed to help lower the customers’ cost of ownership and maximize the use of their assets. For more information, visit the OnPoint Solutions website.