GE Aviation delivered its first production T408 engine for the Sikorsky CH-53K King Stallion helicopter to the U.S. Naval Air Systems Command (NAVAIR) on September 30.
"We are honored to meet this milestone in support of the CH-53K program," said Linda Smith, T408 Program Director at GE Aviation. "We have a dedicated team that is focused on delivering the improved capabilities of the T408. Delivering our first production engine is a crucial step forward."
In August, GE Aviation was awarded a $143 million contract with NAVAIR for the third lot of T408 Low-Rate Initial Production (LRIP) engines to power the U.S. Marines Corps' most advanced heavy-lift helicopter. This follows an initial LRIP 1 and 2 contract that was awarded in November of 2017. GE Aviation recently opened a new general assembly and prep-to-ship area dedicated for the T408 engine at its facility in Lynn, Mass to support delivery.
"With each successive production lot, we move closer to full-rate production of the T408, which will deliver unprecedented performance to the U.S. Marine Corps for decades to come," Smith said.
GE Aviation's T408 is the most advanced rotorcraft engine in its class and continues to pass critical milestones as it moves towards full-rate production. To date, the T408 engine has operated extremely well and has demonstrated exceptional performance retention for more than 1,500 flight hours and 8,000 hours of engine operating time on aircraft.
Three 7,500 shp-rated T408 engines provide the power for the King Stallion, enabling the aircraft to carry a 27,000-pound external load over a mission radius of 110 nautical miles in Navy high/hot weather conditions, which triples the external load carrying capacity of the service's current CH-53E Super Stallion powered by GE Aviation's T64 engine. The T408 provides more than 57 percent more power, 18 percent better specific fuel consumption and 63 percent fewer parts than the T64. It features a more rugged compressor design to increase durability and resistance to sand erosion and salt water corrosion, features ideal to withstand the Marine Corps' tough operating environment.
Other GE Supply Chain facilities in Hooksett, N.H.; Rutland, Vt.; Madisonville, Ky., Dayton, Ohio, and Jacksonville, Fla. will all provide parts for this contract. MTU Aero Engines is a program participant responsible for the development and production of the power turbine
Source: GE delivers first production T408 engine to NAVAIR
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