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GE90
GE90-115B
Type Turbofan
Manufacturer GE-Aviation
First run 1995
Major applications Boeing 777
Variants General Electric GEnx

General Electric GE90 is a family of high-bypass turbofan engines built by GE-Aviation for the Boeing 777, with thrust ranging from 74,000 to 115,000 lbf (329 to 512 kN). It was first introduced in November 1995 on British Airways' 777s, and is available only on the 777. The engine is one of three options for the 777-200, -200ER, and -300, and the exclusive engine of the -200LR, -300ER, and -200LRF.

Contents

History

NASA GE90 airflow simulation

The GE90 was launched in 1990 by General Electric (USA) associated with Snecma (France), IHI (Japan) and Avio (Italy). Developed from the 1970s NASA Energy Efficient Engine, the 10-stage high pressure compressor develops a pressure ratio of 23:1, an industry record. The GE90-115B fan is an advanced design made from composite materials and is the first production engine to feature swept rotor blades.

At least one technical paper presented on behalf of one of GE's project partners indicates that further thrust improvement programs will be promoted should a market for higher thrusts arise. For comparison purposes, the Boeing 747-400's largest engines produce 63,300 lbf (289 kN) of thrust. It is therefore likely that the next version or successor of the Boeing 777 will be powered with a later version or derivation of this engine and will produce twice the thrust of the most powerful fitted to the venerable 747.

GE90 engines can only be airfreighted in assembled form by outsize cargo aircraft such as the Antonov An-124 'Condor', presenting unique problems if due to emergency diversions, a 777 was stranded in a place without the proper spare parts. If the fan is removed from the core, then the engines may be shipped on a 747 Freighter. On December 17, 2005 a GE90-94B failed on an Air France 777 flying from Seoul to Paris resulting in an unscheduled landing in Irkutsk, Siberia. A replacement engine was flown via an An-124, and the engines were exchanged. The cause of the failure is still under investigation.[1]

The GEnx engine that has been developed for the Boeing 787, 747-8 is derived from the GE90. Engine Alliance, a cooperative venture between GE Aircraft Engines and Pratt & Whitney, developed a separate GE90 derivative engine for the Airbus A380 called the GP7000.

Notable facts

The second most powerful variant (GE90-110B) mounted on a Boeing 777-200LR

World's largest jet engine

The GE90 series are physically the largest engines in aviation history, the fan diameter of the original series being 312 cm (123 in). The latest variant, the GE90-115B, has a fan diameter of 325 cm (128 in). This means that the GE90 has a larger diameter than most cabins in business aircraft as well as smaller airliners such as the Bombardier CRJ family or the Embraer ERJ, and is only slightly smaller than the 3.54-metre cabin width of the Boeing 757.

Holder of the thrust world record

According to the Guinness Book of Records, at 127,900 lbf (569 kN), it holds the record for the highest thrust (though it is rated at 115,300 lbf (513 kN)). This thrust record was accomplished inadvertently as part of a one hour triple red-line engine stress test. In order to accommodate the increase in torsional stresses an entirely new steel alloy, GE1014, had to be created and then machined to extreme tolerances.[2]

Holder of the range world record

On November 10, 2005, the GE90 entered the Guinness World Records for a second time. It powered a 777-200LR during the world's longest flight by a commercial airliner, though there were no fare-paying passengers on the flight, only journalists and invited guests. The 777-200LR flew 13,422 miles (21,601 km) in 22 hours 42 minutes, flying from Hong Kong to London "the long way": over the Pacific, over the continental U.S., then over the Atlantic to London.[3] (The longest flight by a commercial airliner with passengers was 18 hours, flown by an Airbus A340-500 aircraft on a daily non-stop fight from Newark-Singapore on Singapore Airlines.)

Versions and uses

Engine Low Performance Engines Medium Performance Engines High performance Engines Competing engines
GE90-76B GE90-77B GE90-85B GE90-90B GE90-92B GE90-94B GE90-110B1 GE90-115B
Thrust
at sea level
76,000 lbf
(338.1 kN)
77,000 lbf
(342.5 kN)
85,000 lbf
(378.1 kN)
90,000 lbf
(400.3 kN)
92,000 lbf
(409.2 kN)
94,000 lbf
(416.8 kN)
110,000 lbf
(489.3 kN)
115,000 lbf
(512.9 kN)
RR Trent 800
P&W PW4000
777-200 Yes check.svg Yes check.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg
777-200ER X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg Yes check.svg Yes check.svg Yes check.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg
777-300 X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg Yes check.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg
777 Freighter X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg
777-200LR X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg Yes check.svg X mark.svg
777-300ER X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg X mark.svg Yes check.svg X mark.svg

Specifications (GE90-94B)

Pakistan International Airlines has an exclusive contract with GE to power its Boeing 777 fleet

General characteristics

  • Type: axial flow, twin-shaft, bypass turbofan engine
  • Length: 287 in (7,290 mm)
  • Diameter: overall: 134 in (3,404 mm) ; fan: 123 in (3,124 mm)
  • Dry weight: 16,644 lb (7,550 kg)

Components

  • Compressor: axial: 1 wide chord fan, 3 low pressure stages, 10 high pressure stages
  • Turbine: axial: 6 low pressure stages, 2 high pressure stages

Performance

Specifications (GE90-115B)

A GE90-115B mounted on the #2 pylon of GE's Boeing 747 flight test aircraft at the Mojave Airport in 2002

General characteristics

  • Type: axial flow, twin-shaft, bypass turbofan engine
  • Length: 287 in (7,290 mm)
  • Diameter: overall: 135 in (3,429 mm) ; fan: 128 in (3,251 mm)
  • Dry weight: 18,260 lb (8,283 kg)

Components

  • Compressor: axial: 1 wide chord swept fan, 4 low pressure stages, 9 high pressure stages
  • Turbine: axial: 6 low pressure stages, 2 high pressure stages

Performance

  • Maximum Thrust: max at sea level: 115,300 lbf (512.9 kN) ; world record set at 127,900 lbf (568,9 kN) 827 feet above sea level
  • Overall pressure ratio: 42:1
  • Fuel consumption: "Achieves 22 percent better fuel efficiency per seat than their closest competitor. Across the entire GE90-115B-equipped 777 fleet, that equates to an annual savings of nearly 90 million gallons (340 million liters) of fuel."[4]
  • Thrust-to-weight ratio: approx. 6.3:1

Miscellaneous

  • Approximative unit price: $24 million (2009 USD)
  • A single GE90-115B delivers a power which is roughly equivalent to 111,526 HP[5], twice the power of the Titanic.
  • At take off thrust, a single GE90 engine can ingest around two million cubic feet of air per minute[6].

References

  1. ^ "GE strives to identify Air France engine fault". Flight International. 2006-01-03. http://www.flightglobal.com/articles/2006/01/03/203826/ge-strives-to-identify-air-france-engine-fault.html. Retrieved 2008-02-16.  
  2. ^ "Impressive Progress of GE90-115B Engine Continues". July 24, 2000. http://www.geae.com/aboutgeae/presscenter/ge90/ge90_20000724.html. Retrieved 18 December 2008.  
  3. ^ "The longest flight". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/boeing/longestflight. Retrieved 2008-02-16.  
  4. ^ "GE90-115B aircraft engine". General Electric Company. 2006. http://ge.ecomagination.com/site/downloads/ge90/GE90_onepager_en.pdf. Retrieved 2009-03-14.   (Note that while the GE90-115B engines burns more fuel per engine compared to the Rolls-Royce Trent 500s used on the A340-500/-600, its nearest competitors, using two GE90-115Bs on a 777-200LR/-300ER compared to A340-500/-600s using four Trent 500s produce a cost advantage of roughly around 8-9%.)
  5. ^ (French) Jean-Claude Thevenin, Le turboréacteur, moteur des avions à réaction, AAAF, June 2004 (3rd edition).
  6. ^ Norris, Guy and Wagner, Mark: Boeing 777: The Technological Marvel, page 46. Zenith Imprint, 2001. ISBN 0760300348

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