The first CFM56-7 engine went to test on schedule here 28 April, paving the way for first flight on a modified Boeing 747 flying testbed in January 1996 and engine certification the following October, less than 40 months after program launch.
The CFM56-7 powerplant for the next-generation Boeing 737-600/-700/-800 series of aircraft is produced by CFM International, a 50/50 joint company of Snecma (Safran Group) of France and General Electric of the United States.
The engine has operated for a total of more than 13 hours to date and has achieved its rated thrust. In addition to the initial break-in run, the CFM56-7 has also completed a power calibration and preliminary performance runs. Initial data analysis indicates that results meet all pre-test predictions.
Over the next few months, the engine will continue to run performance evaluation and fan mapping tests. The CFM56-7 is scheduled for first flight on the Boeing 737-700 in early 1997 and will enter service with Southwest Airlines that fall. The CFM56-7-powered 737-800 enters service in March 1998 with Hapag Lloyd, while the 737-600 is scheduled to enter service with Scandinavian Air Systems in August 1998.