The latest T700 model, the T700-701D, is enhancing the U.S. military Apache and Black Hawk fleet. With its improved hot-section components, the -701D increases time on wing (TOW), provides superior mission capability, lowers life-cycle costs and produces 5% more power than earlier versions. Ongoing kit conversions will continue for another four years and will provide the U.S. Army with a common T700 fleet configuration.
In January Sikorsky selected the YT706-GE-700R turboshaft engine to power its new light tactical S-97 RAIDER helicopter. This 2,500-3,000 shaft-horsepower (SHP) engine will power two prototype aircraft that will undergo U.S. military flight evaluation in 2014.
"Our products and our people are dedicated to warfighter readiness and success," said Ed Birtwell, vice president of GE's Turboshaft Project Department. "We will continue to leverage our experience, expertise and innovation to enhance our propulsion capabilities and ensure we remain the helicopter engine supplier of choice."
Successful flight testing of the T700/701K-powered Korean utility helicopter (Surion) has been completed. The T700/701K (co-developed by GE and Samsung Techwin) is the inaugural rear-drive T700 engine and features a -701D common core, high-efficiency counter-rotating power turbine, and a new full authority electronic control (FADEC) system. The initial lots of production kits have been shipped and Samsung has delivered the first production T700/701K engines to Korea Aerospace Industries (KAI) in April 2012. The first aircraft is scheduled to enter service with the Republic of Korea Army later this year.
Two new CT7-8 engine variants were certified in May - the CT7-8A6 designed for the Sikorsky S-92, and the CT7-8A7 intended to power the Canadian CH-148 Cyclone. These newly certified engines, more powerful and durable than earlier models, feature improved materials in the high pressure and power turbines, and share the increased flow compressor and advanced FADEC system of the original CT7-8.
GE Aviation is also developing the 2,000-SHP-class CT7-2E1 commercial turboshaft engine to power the AW189 (commercial) and AW149 (military) helicopters. The CT7-2E1 is being designed with an emphasis on low-fuel consumption, low cost-of-operation, and with other technical features to ensure the aircraft requirements of long-range, high-speed performance.
Additionally a new engine for the Bell 525 Relentless is in development. The CT7-2F1 turboshaft engine will be a commercially certified variant of the battle proven T700-701D but will feature a FADEC and ratings tailored to the aircraft and its operational needs. The 525 will be capable of carrying up to 16 passengers and is designed to support various mission configurations including oil & gas, search & rescue, helicopter emergency medical services and VIP/corporate transport.
The GE38 engine for the U.S. Marine Corps Sikorsky CH-53K new heavy-lift helicopter continues to excel during ground testing. To date, the GE38 program has accumulated more than 1,700 engine test hours on four ground-test engines. In all, GE38 testing will include five ground-test engines that will accumulate approximately 5,000 engine test hours, plus provide 20 flight-test engines. The GE38 architecture incorporates new aerodynamic features for more efficient operation, improved cooling schemes and materials for added durability, lower fuel consumption and 63% fewer parts for lower operating costs versus other engines in its power class.
The GE3000, GE's offering for the AATE (Advanced Affordable Turbine Engine) technology demonstrator program, is nearly through its required commitments. The goal is to demonstrate and validate specific quantifiable targets: improve SFC (Specific Fuel Consumption) by 25%, increase shaft-horsepower (to weight) by 65%, demonstrate 20% improvement in design life, identify a 35% reduction in operation and maintenance costs, and reduce development cost by 15%. The program is on track to complete over the next year.
With more than 16,000 engines delivered, GE's T700/CT7 family of turboshaft and turboprop engines continues its legacy of success. It currently powers 25 types of helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft in service with more than 130 customers in more than 50 countries. The CT7/T700 boasts more than 60 million operating hours in civil and military experience worldwide. Its modular design, which retains the same installation envelope of earlier CT7/T700 models, combines with superior erosion/corrosion features to help ensure easy maintenance and lower life-cycle costs.
GE Aviation is a world-leading provider of jet and turboprop engines, components and integrated systems for commercial, military, business and general aviation aircraft. GE Aviation has a global service network to support these offerings.