The CFM Project TECH56 validation phase continues its highly successful progress with the 68-inch, hollow swept wide chord fan currently undergoing mechanical, performance, and acoustic tests on a modified CFM56-5C engine.
Project TECH56 is a technology acquisition and maturation program of CFM International (CFM). CFM, the world's leading aircraft engine manufacturer, is a 50/50 joint company between Snecma Moteurs (Safran Group) of France and General Electric of the United States.
The Snecma-designed fan has undergone more than 50 hours of rig and ground tests this year. The fan just completed initial acoustic testing at GE Aircraft Engines' Peebles, Ohio, outdoor test facility to characterize its noise signature and is undergoing 2.5-, 4-, and 6-pound bird ingestion rig tests at Snecma facilities in Villaroche, France. Thus far, the fan has met or exceeded design point flow and efficiency goals.
Tests completed to date include: verification of the mechanical integrity of a new aluminum fan frame with integrated outlet guide vanes (OGVs); validation of the aeromechanics of the hollow aft-swept fan blades; design point performance; and fan acoustic mapping, using a variable fan nozzle which allows evaluation at different pressure ratios. Early next year, CFM will conduct performance mapping at Villaroche then return the engine to Peebles for crosswind testing. A full-scale engine blade-out test is scheduled at Villaroche for late 2002.
Validation of other TECH56 components are also scheduled for 2002, including a new booster design being tested on a CFM56-5B engine. This booster is designed to achieve higher reliability with fewer parts by eliminating variable bleed valves (VBVs). The company will also test its Twin Annular, Pre-Swirl (TAPS) combustor with a new fuel nozzle design that incorporates design refinements.