LISBON, PORTUGAL May 22, 2006 In a ceremony here today, TAP Portugal and CFM International celebrated the airline's achievement of one million flight hours with its CFM56-5B engine fleet.
CFM International, a 50/50 joint company between Snecma (Safran Group) and General Electric Company, is the world's leading supplier of commercial aircraft engines with more than 15,600 engines in service with more than 450 operators worldwide. The CFM56-5 is the engine of choice for Airbus A320 family aircraft and has been selected to more nearly 60 percent of the aircraft ordered to date.
TAP Portugal, which celebrated in 60th anniversary in 2005, operates routes to more than 45 destinations in 25 countries throughout Europe, Africa, North America, and South America. In 2005, the airline carried more than 6.3 million passengers. TAP took delivery of its first CFM56-5B-powered Airbus A320 aircraft in 1997. Today, the airline operates a fleet of 29 Airbus A319, A320, and A321 aircraft, along with four CFM56-5A-powered A320s and four long-range, four-engine Airbus A340s powered by the CFM56-5C engines.
"We are very happy to be sharing this milestone with TAP Portugal," said Eric Bachelet, president and CEO of CFM International. "It is highly gratifying when an airline of this stature puts its trust in your products. We have developed a strong relationship with this TAP over the past 15+ years, and we look forward to the future with great anticipation. The entire CFM Team sends its warmest congratulations to everyone at TAP Portugal."
The high reliability, long on-wing life, and low maintenance costs of the CFM56-5B makes it extremely popular with leasing companies, low-cost carriers, and major airlines worldwide. More than 2,100 CFM56-5B engines have been delivered to date, and the fleet is growing at a rate of about 30 engines per month. The CFM56-5B-powered A320 fleet currently in service has logged more than 24 million engine flight hours and 14 million cycles. The engine maintains a departure reliability rate of 99.96 percent and an in-flight shutdown rate of just .002, among the best in the industry.