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GE Aviation's Latest Engine Aims To Make Air Travel Greener And More Affordable

From left: GE Aviation CEO John Slattery and SAFRAN CEO Olivier Andriès announce details of the program in Paris Monday."

GE Aviation and its longtime partner SAFRAN announced at a Paris news conference Monday they're working to create an aircraft engine that will reduce fuel consumption by 20%, subsequently lowering carbon emissions.

Both companies have worked together for years to develop and build jet engines as part of CFM International.

"We must act with a burning sense of urgency," says GE Aviation's CEO John Slattery, "and rise to the challenge of decarbonization."

Both companies stress they are early in their research as part of the RISE program - Revolutionary Innovation for Sustainable Engines. The engine won't be ready until 2035.

Ultimately, the companies say the greener engine will make air travel more affordable and open up more destinations.

Key Components

GE Aviation and SAFRAN will take some of the technologies fromtheir most advanced engine, LEAP, and will include:

  • An open fan design to increase propulsion efficiency
  • Hybrid electric capability
  • Composite fan blades
  • Heat resistant metal alloys
  • Ceramix matrix composites (CMCs)
  • Additive manufacturing
  • Aerodynamic improvements
  • The capability to use hydrogen fuel

"We're energized by this moment," says Slattery. "Today we stand on the shoulders of giants who went before us. We look forward with confidence and a bold vision for reinventing the future of flight."
The companies say a prototype will be finished by 2025 and testing will start soon after.

In addition to the announcement of the program launch, GE Aviation and SAFRAN extended their CFM International partnership to 2050.

Ann Thompson has decades of journalism experience in the Greater Cincinnati market and brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to her reporting.