5C/P engine being developed for the Airbus A340-300 Enhanced aircraft is on schedule to begin flight testing in early 2003, leading to certification and entry into service later that year.
CFM56 engines are produced by CFM International (CFM), a 50/50 joint company between Snecma Moteurs (Safran Group) of France and General Electric of the United States and the world's leading supplier of commercial aircraft engines. Overall, more than 15,300 CFM56 engines have been ordered by 350 customers worldwide.
The CFM56-5C is the exclusive powerplant for the Airbus A340-200 and -300 models. The new CFM56-5C/P is being developed for both the Enhanced aircraft and as an upgrade package for current CFM56-5C operators. South African Airways launched the program earlier this year with an order for six aircraft. In May, Swiss placed an order for 13 aircraft. These orders bring total CFM56-5-powered A340 orders to 250 aircraft.
CFM initiated ground testing of the -5C/P last November, paving the way for engine certification in 2003. A second engine began testing in January and results to date have been good. The flight test program will encompass 50 hours of performance and operability tests on an A340 aircraft.
The ground test program will ultimately include four test engines, and more than 400 hours of certification ground tests are planned, including: performance, operability, mechanical response, control system, and ingestion testing.
CFM also plans to go beyond normal certification test requirements to demonstrate the CFM56-5C/P's long-term durability and reliability prior to entry into service. The company will begin an endurance test program in early 2003 that will encompass several thousand engine cycles simulating many years of severe field operation on an accelerated basis. Testing will be completed by entry into service.
The CFM56-5C/P-interchangeable with the current configuration CFM56-5C-incorporates an advanced three-dimensional aerodynamic (3-D aero) high-pressure compressor and high-pressure turbine. A new stage one low-pressure turbine nozzle has been developed to integrate the 3-D aero core with the engine's current low-pressure turbine.
Compared to the current configuration CFM56-5C4, the -5C/P will provide a 1 percent improvement in specific fuel consumption and a 13° centigrade increase in exhaust gas temperature (EGT) margin. This additional margin will result in maintenance cost reductions of at least 10 percent compared to the current configuration. The CFM56-5C/P will maintain the CFM56-5C noise signature, which is the quietest in its class. The CFM56-5C-powered A340 meets all current noise regulations with a cumulative margin of 23 EPNdB (effective perceived noise in decibels). The CFM56-5C/P will become the production configuration for the CFM56-5C beginning in 2004.