CFM International has initiated full-scale testing of the advanced TECH56 swept wide chord fan blade at Snecma facilities in Villaroche, France. The fan, which is installed on a modified CFM56-7 engine, will undergo instrumented performance and mechanical testing through the end of August.
CFM International is a 50/50 joint company between Snecma (Safran Group) of France and General Electric of the United States.
TECH56 is advancing technology significantly for retrofit into existing engines, as well as serving as the basis for potential new and derivative CFM56 engines. The drivers are simplified designs, better component efficiency focused on lower overall cost of ownership, high quality, improved reliability, and reduced environmental impact.
Swept wide chord fan blade technology will provide higher thrust, improved aerodynamic efficiency with less weight, and lower noise. CFM will run a full-size blade release in Villaroche, in addition to cross-wind tests at GE's Peebles, Ohio, outdoor test facility in the fourth quarter of 1999.