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Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Engine makers: 1. Introduction
Date: 11 Aug 94 02:18:15

In the Western large commercial aircraft business, there are three major
airframe manufacturers and three major engine manufacturers.  While many
people are familiar with the Boeing, Airbus, and MD products, less people
are familiar with GE's, P&W's, and R-R's lines of commercial engines.  (In
terms of market share, France's government-owned SNECMA should be considered
as a major engine manufacturer, but all SNECMA commercial engines are at
least 50% GE-designed.)

Other than the airframe itself, the powerplant is the largest, most
"brand-identifiable" object on an airplane.  For a new airplane, the engines
account for approximately 15-30% of the total investment.  In the old days,
each aircraft type had a sole engine supplier, hence, it was not necessary
to distinguish various engines.  Today, the B737 and A340 (as well as the
MD80 and MD90, if you insist) are the only large jetliners in production that
do not offer options on engine manufacturer.

Here's an introduction of the large engine manufacturers for the
less-informed.  Minimal technical information is included (mostly in the
Rolls-Royce section, and they are fairly superficial).  Brief lists of
all the major engines and some of the important customers are included.  For
the well-informed, there is probably not much new information here,
nonetheless, your comments and corrections are welcome.

All of the information in the article are from publicly available sources,
such as:

    Aviation Week & Space Technologies,
    Flight International,
    Air Transport World, and

The article is rather long (~380 lines), so I split it up into six parts,
and this is Part One.  If the reader is not sure whether s/he is interested
in the topic, one may read Part Four (Rolls-Royce) next before deciding.  I
hope some of you may find it interesting.

Lastly, the disclaimer: the opinions expressed here are personally mine,
they do not reflect the opinions of my previous or current employers.
(WARNING: You'll see many many parentheses because I tend to ramble a bit.
Also, please pardon my English, since it is not my mother tongue.  I hope my
English is not as bad as Hong Kong's pronunciation of the alphabet "z"
/zee-ZED/, i.e., Chinglish with some British and American flavo(u)rs! ;-)

         |  H Andrew Chuang  |

Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Engine makers: 2. P&W , IAE
Date: 11 Aug 94 02:18:15

Pratt & Whitney

Before the widebody era, Pratt & Whitney owned the jet-powered commercial
airplane market.  They once captured well over 90% of the non-Soviet market
with the JT3D (which powered the B707 and DC-8) and the JT8D (which powered
the B727, B737-100/200, DC-9, and MD80).  The JT8D is the most widely flown
engine in the world, and the -200 series are still in production.  However,
with the introduction of the V2500-powered MD90, the days of the MD-80/JT8D
line are numbered.

P&W's first high-bypass turbofan engine, the JT9D, was originally the sole
powerplant for the B747.  Later, the JT9D had also found applications on the
DC-10, A300/310, and B767.  The engine initially suffered many technical
difficulties on the B747.  This probably was a major factor that Boeing was
asked to offer CF6- and RB211-powered B747s, and P&W lost almost all European
B747 customers to GE or R-R.  The fact that the JT9D is the most short-lived
turbofan engine is a further proof of the engine's technical problems.
Disputably, the JT9D commenced P&W's declining market share.

Since the JT9D, P&W have introduced two new engines: the PW2000 and PW4000.
Both engines are competitive, but neither has achieved the success that the
JT8D enjoyed.  The PW2000, originally designated as the JT10D, has only one
Western commercial application--the B757.  (The McDonnell Douglas C17
Transporter is powered by the military version of the PW2000.  The Russian
four-engined Il-96M will be certified with the PW2337.)  In the B757 market,
the PW2000 competes with Rolls-Royce's RB211-535E4.  In terms of number of
B757 customers, Rolls-Royce have an overwhelming advantage over P&W.  On the
other hand, in terms of number of installed engines, the PW2000 is only
slightly behind the -535E4.  Just the PW2000-powered B757 fleet of Delta,
United, Northwest, and UPS already accounted for more than 40% of the B757 in
service, yet, Rolls claim to have 75% of the B757 market.  Nevertheless, by
my count, about 65-70% of the B757 on order will be powered by the -534E4.

About ten years ago, P&W launched the PW4000 to replace the JT9D, because
the JT9D could no longer be grown to meet the requirement of heavier and
longer-range derivatives of the B747, B767, the A300, and the MD11.  P&W
were able to keep some important customers, such as the now-defunct Pan Am
(PW4000 launch customer), Northwest, United, and Singapore, so that P&W
still have a respectable, but not dominating share of the big engine market.
Although, the JT9D powered more than 70% of the older B747s, P&W has
captured only 30-35% of the B747-400 market.  Approximately five or six
years ago, one of Pratt's most loyal customer, Japan Airlines, ordered GE's
CF6-80C2 engines for their B747-400 fleet.  It was a big blow to P&W.
Ironically, it was JAL's recent PW4000 order for the B777 that helped P&W to
gain the majority of the B777 market.  BTW, the PW4000 is also the leader in
the A330 market: this is a first for P&W on an Airbus plane.

While P&W is doing relatively well in North America and the Far East, P&W is
extremely weak in the European market: Swissair's MD11 fleet as well as SAS's
and Condor's B767 fleets are the only sizable PW4000-powered fleet in Europe.
Similarly, Condor is the only significant PW2000 customer in Europe.  Recent
talks of cross-equity investment with Germany's MTU should help P&W to regain
some of the European market.  MTU is the also most significant partner of the
PW4084 program.

Significant customers: United, Northwest, Delta, Japan, Swissair, Singapore.

International Aero Engines

Without a high-bypass 20,000-30,000-lb-thrust-class engine to compete with
the CFM56, P&W teamed up with Rolls of Britain, MTU of Germany, Fiat of
Italy, and JAEC (a Japanese joint venture) to form IAE.  IAE's V2500 competes
with the CFM56 for the A320/321/319 market.  A few years ago, the V2500 was
selected as the only powerplant for the MD90, but the smaller, yet-to-be-
launched MD95 will be exclusively powered by the BR715 which is jointly
developed by BMW and R-R.  The V2500 had a minor setback when Boeing decided
not to offer multi powerplants for the third-generation B737-6/7/800.
Despite the setback, IAE is actively searching for new applications.  A
possible application is to reengine the B727-200 with two IAE2530-W5s.

Initially, IAE had a hard time picking up Airbus customers because of its
late start.   In the last few years, IAE won some big A320 orders from
American West and United.  These orders certainly boosted the IAE order book,
however, CFMI still have a big lead.

Significant customers: Lufthansa (only 20 A321's; it's significant because
		       Lufthansa switched from CFMI to IAE), United,
		       American West, and Delta (MD90)

Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Engine makers: 3. GE / CFMI
Date: 11 Aug 94 02:18:15

General Electric / CFM International

Before the CF6-powered DC-10, the only GE commercial engine that I'm aware of
was the CJ805, a turbojet that powered the Convair 880 and 990.  About 25
years ago, When Airbus was designing its A300 twin, Airbus really wanted an
European engine.  The CF6 got a head start with the Airbus because of GE's
partnership with SNECMA and MTU(?).  By my rough estimate, GE's CF6 and CFM56
power more than 70% of all the Airbus planes in service and on order.
Nonetheless, GE's dominance may be fading.  The A330 is the first Airbus
product that will predominately be powered by non-GE/CFMI engines; GE even fell
behind Rolls-Royce, the "new kid" in town.  (It's ironic that an American
engine with some European participation was considered more "European" than
the Rolls engines, especially when SNECMA/MTU involvement in the CF6 program
was a token one.  It is most amusing that it took almost twenty years to put
a "pure"-European engine on an European Airbus!  On the other hand, British
Airways have never ordered an Airbus plane from Airbus, yet!  And I wonder
whether there will ever be an European airline flying an RR-powered Airbus?)
Other than the DC-10 and the A300, the CF6 also power the B747, B767, A310,
and recently the MD11 as well as the A330.  The CF6 leads the competition in
all applications except the B747-200/-300 and the A330.

Although, SNECMA has a small interest in the CF6 program, the most important
GE/SNECMA partnership is CFM International.  Initially, CFMI did not have
much success in selling the CFM56 for reengineing the B707 and DC-8.
However, the second-generation B737 arguably made the CFM56 one of the most
successful engine programs ever.  The popularity of the CFM56-powered Boeing
737-300/400/500 certainly has propelled GE to displace P&W as the overall
market leader.  IMHO, this is why GE is willing to share the B737-600/700/800
development cost to maintain its monopoly to power the next generation B737.
The CFM56 is also used on the A320/321/319.  In addition, it is currently the
only powerplant for the four-engined A340.

During the last decade, the engine thrust requirement had steadily been
increasing.  With the success of the B767 and A310 over-water extended-range
twin operations (ETOPS), airlines are interested in bigger twins.  As a
result, the A330, and later the even bigger B777, were launched to satisfy
the market needs.  Unfortunately, the CF6 has reached its limits and GE must
design a brand-new engine, the GE90, for the B777.  At the time, GE was
convinced that there would be a strong market for the growth B777 and 600-
to 800-seat NLA-type aircraft(*see below).  As a result, the GE90 was
designed with ample room to grow, and it is significantly larger than the
competitiors' derivative engines.  The GE90 has the largest fan (123"
diameter vs. competitors' 110" and 112", or 20% more in frontal area), it has
the highest bypass ratio (~9-10 vs. ~7-8), and the highest pressure ratio
(~40 vs. ~35).  The high bypass ratio helps to increase the engine propulsive
efficiency, while the high pressure ratio helps to increase the thermal
efficiency.  However, all of the recent proposals for NLA-type aircraft--such
as the B747X and A3XX-- as well as the "long-forgotten" four-engined MD12
require engines in 70K-lb thrust range.  Although GE may offer a derated GE90
with a smaller fan, an improved CF6 derivative may be a more competitive
product.  Then, with only the B777 platform, the future of the GE90 is not
exactly bright.  Nevertheless, the GE90--developed by GE, SNECMA, Fiat, and
IHI of Japan--is supposedly the most (specific-)fuel-efficient and
environmental-friendly engine.

GE's significant customers: American, All Nippon, Air France, Lufthansa,
			    JAL (B747-400s)
CFMI's significant customers: Southwest, Lufthansa, United, Continental,
			      USAir and many other big B737 operators

*NLA  - New Large Airplane, I believe it is a Boeing project name.
 VLCT - Very Large Commercial Transport, I believe this is the term used by
	the joint investigating team of Boeing and partners of Airbus.
 VHCT - Very-High-Capacity Transport is the new Airbus term for the A3XX.
 VLA  - Very Large Aircraft, I can't trace the origin of this name.

Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Engine makers: 4. Rolls-Royce
Date: 11 Aug 94 02:18:16


Rolls have been in the civil jet business for a long time.  After all,
turbojets were invented by the British.  The Comet, Trident, Caravelle,
BAC1-11, VC10 and B707-420 were all RR-powered aircraft.  They also build
the Tay engine for the Fokker F100 as well as some reengined B727s and 1-11s.
In addition, R-R is a major partner of IAE, and R-R is collaborating with BMW
to build the BR700 family for regional jets and the MD95.  The Berlin-based
Anglo-German joint venture is also mulling to build the BR500.  Nevertheless,
R-R's current bread and butter is the RB211/Trent which can be found on the
L1011, B747, B757, B767 (with British Air being the sole customer), B777, and
A330 (the first-ever R-R-powered Airbus).  Although, Some MD11s were to be
powered by the Trent 600, the engine program was eliminated with the demise
of Air Europe which was the only Trent-powered MD11 customer.

Similar to the PW4084, Trent is likewise a derivative engine.  It is most
impressive that R-R is able to provide thrusts ranging from 37,000lb to over
100,000lb with the RB211 family, while the American competitors need at
least two families to fulfill the same requirement.  (Just for reference,
the initial JT9D-3 generated 43,000 lb of thrust, while the largest JT9D,
the -7R4H1, generated 56,000 lb of thrust.)  Although R-R were the only
supplier for the L-1011 powerplant, and R-R are marginally dominating the
B757 market, R-R have the smallest overall market share among the three
engine firms.  Thus, it was not surprising that R-R had once agreed to
co-develop high-thrust engines with GE.  R-R subsequently retracted from the
deal and revived the RB211-524 program with Cathay Pacific Airways' B747-400
order.  In spite of the near cancellation, the RB211/Trent is still a
formidable competitor for both the PW4000 and CF6/GE90.  It's puzzling why
R-R cannot cash in on the commonalities of the RB211/Trent engines to gain a
larger share of the market.  Perhaps, they have an ineffective marketing
operation, or their engines are not as good as they claim.  Nonetheless, the
American manufacturers do have a notable cost advantage over R-R, and this is
probably the most important factor of all.

There are some significant differences between the RB211/Trent and the
American counterparts.  First of all, the RB211 was the first engine to
use wide-chord fan blades.  Although, the wide-chord fan blades are much
larger than the traditional fan blades, there is hardly any weight penalty
because the wide-chord blades are hollowed and the blade count is reduced
by a third.  Furthermore, they are aerodynamically more efficient and less
susceptible to vibration problems.  R-R wanted to use the technology back
when the L-1011 was first introduced, but it was not until the mid-80s (?)
were they able to put wide-chord fans into service with the newer RB211,
the -535E4 and -524G/H.  As a result of R-R's involvement in IAE, the V2500
is the only other in-service engine that uses wide-chord fan blades.
Nevertheless, both the PW4084 and GE90 will use wide-chord fan blades, too.
On top of that, GE will take one step further by using composite materials
for the GE90 fan blades.

Other visible RB211 differences are: 1) the engine rotates in the "wrong" :-)
direction (clockwise, forward looking aft), 2) the newer RB211s (-535E4 and
-524G/H) have "integrated exhaust nozzles", i.e., the bypass flow is mixed
with the hot jet flow from the core before it is exhausted.  The most visible
characteristic of integrated exhaust nozzles is that the cowling run through
the whole engine length.  The advantages of mixing the bypass and core flows
are improved thrust, reduced specific fuel consumption and reduced noise; but
there will be more drag, the engines will be heavier and more items are
needed to be maintained.  Other high-bypass turbofan engines that use the
same feature include the V2500 and the CFM56-5C on the A340.  However, the
Trent 800 does not seem to have the integrated nozzle.

In addition to the aforementioned differences, the biggest difference is in
the basic design: the RB211/Trent has three shafts that drive the low-
pressure (LP), intermediate-pressure (IP), and high-pressure (HP) stages,
while the traditional two-shaft configuration has the LP and HP stages, only.
The advantage of the three-spool design is that the IP stages operate at the
optimum speed instead of the lower fan/LP speed, but its mechanical
complexity makes it harder to maintain.  In fact, the RB211 is the smallest
and yet the heaviest engine because of its three-shaft and long-cowl
integrated-nozzle configuration.  However, Rolls boasted the Trent 800 as
the lightest B777 engine because the efficiency of the three-spool design
is now fully realized with the high-thrust applications.  As a result, Rolls
anticipated that the B777 with the Trent 800 would burn less fuel than with
competitors' engines on trips shorter than 4000 nm.  If all these claims are
true, then financial incentives must be more important than performance
figures.  Otherwise R-R should not have lost British Airways' B777 order to
GE!  (BA is the largest and most loyal R-R customer.  Other than the old
B747-100s and a few ex-BCal DC-10s, BA's widebody fleet as well as the B757
fleet are exclusively powered by the RB211.)

Significant customers: British, Cathay Pacific, Qantas, American (B757),
		       TWA (the first and only Trent customer in North

Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Engine makers: 5. Future
Date: 11 Aug 94 02:18:16

What's in the future?

During the late 70s and early 80s, the oil crises had led to the development
of propfan/unducted fan, arguably the most interesting and exciting
commercial engine development since the jet engine was first introduced.
With the stablization of oil prices, the airline industry showed little
interest in the new technology, hence, the effort was halted.  Although, the
development may not resurrect in its full form, many pieces of the technology
developed have already been or will be used in other engines.

In the near future, the three companies will spend most of their resources
to evolve growth versions of the PW4084, GE90, and Trent 800.  These growth
engines will generate thrust ranging from 90,000 to 100,000-lb which are
required for the planned B-plus, C and stretched versions of the B777.

Global collaborations have been proven to be very effective in the engine
business.  The most recent one teamed up SNECMA and MTU of Europe with Pratt
and GE of the US to build a 20,000-lb thrust class engine to compete with
BMW-RR's BR700.  The program is dubbed "Project Blue" and the teaming of
several rivals certainly makes the cooperation very interesting.  On the
other hand, as Project Blue is way behind the BR700 program, their chance to
succeed is likely to depend heavily on whether Deutsche Aerospace (or DASA,
along with MTU are both subsidiaries of Daimler-Benz) will build a 100-seat
regional jet or not.  However, DASA have a strong financial interest in
Netherlands' Fokker which already have a 100-seat entry--the F100; and there
is a possibility that MTU may choose to cooperate with BMW-RR instead of
Project Blue.

On the other side of the globe, if Boeing and the Japanese decide to go ahead
with the B737-derived 80-100-seat regional jet, or the Japanese decide to
build their own YSX, the powerplant for either aircraft is most likely to be
a joint venture with Japan's IHI and/or Mitsubishi holding substantial
interests.  For instance, IHI have been talking to various companies
including BMW-RR, while P&W/MTU have recently initiated negotiation with
Mitsubishi about the possibility of Mistubishi joining Project Blue.

Besides, all the three major engine companies are talking about a new
45,000-lb class engine for the growth A340 and next generation B757.  P&W's
entry is likely to be a ducted propfan, or ADP (Advanced Ducted Prop); GE's
one will be the GE45, a GE90 derivative, or the CFM56-derived CFMXX; and
Roll's will be the RB411, a -535E4 derivative with Trent technologies.  P&W
seem to show keen enthusiasm towards the ADP technology that they have plans
for higher thrust applications using ADP, too.

Last but not the least, on both sides on the Atlantic, governments are
supporting the engine companies (P&W/GE vs SNECMA/RR) to design propulsion
systems for the next generation of high speed commercial transport.
Interestingly, during my preparation for this write-up, I found an old
_Flight International_ report of the B747 rollout.  In the article, it was
envisioned the B747 as an interim intercontinental aircraft that would soon
be replaced by the SST.  One must wonder if the second generation SST will
really take off this time?

Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Engine makers: 6. Product list
Date: 11 Aug 94 02:18:16

Here is a summary list of large-jet engines currently in production, in
wide-usage, or to be produced:

Engine         Application(commercial only)     Nomenclature remarks
======         ============================     ====================
JT8D           B727,B737,DC-9
JT8D-209/17/19 MD80 series
JT9D           B747,B767,A300,A310,DC-10
PW2037/40      B757                             PWabxx
PW2337         Il-96M                           where
PW4056         B747-400                         "a" is either 2 or 4
PW4050/60/4256 B767-200/300                     "b" is the airframe company
PW415x         A300,A310                            0/2 - Boeing  1 - Airbus
PW4458/60      MD11                                   3 - Ilyushin  4 - MD
PW4168         A330                             "xx" is thrust in K lb
PW4084         B777

V2500-A1       A320                             V25xx-yz
V25xx-A5       A320/321/319                     where "xx" is thrust in K lb
V2525/2528-D5  MD90                                       except for V2500-A1
V2530-W5       B727 reengineing (not launched)  "y" is A (Airbus), D (MD), W ?
                                                "z" 1 or 5 ??

CF6-6          DC-10-10
CF6-45/50      DC-10-15/30,B747-200,A300,A310
CF6-80A        B767,A310
CF6-80C2B1/B1F B747-300/-400
CF6-80C2B2/BxF B767-200/300
CF6-80C2A1/5   A300-600/R
CF6-80C2A2/3/8 A310-200/300
CF6-80C2D1F    MD11
CF6-80E1A2     A330                             GE90-xxB where "xx" is thrust
GE90-75B/85B   B777A/B                          in K lb, B for Boeing(?)

CFM56-2        DC-8-70 series
CFM56-3B/C     B737-300/400/500
CFM56-5A       A320/A321
CFM56-5B       A321/A319
CFM56-5C       A340
CFM56-7        B737-600/700/800

Tay 650        Fokker 70/100, B727 reengineing
RB211-22/524D  L1011
RB211-535C2/E4 B757,Tu-204
RB211-524G/H   B747-400,B767-300                TRENTaxx
TRENT768/772   A330                             where "a" is 7 or 8
TRENT875/890   B777                             "xx" is thrust in K lb

BR 715         MD95 (not launched)

Newsgroups: sci.aeronautics.airliners
From: Andrew Chuang <>
Subject: Re: Engine makers: 5. Future
Date: 21 Aug 94 15:35:10

Previously I wrote:

> What's in the future?
> =====================
> ...
> Global collaborations have been proven to be very effective in the engine
> business.  The most recent one teamed up SNECMA and MTU of Europe with Pratt
> and GE of the US to build a 20,000-lb thrust class engine to compete with
> BMW-RR's BR700.  The program is dubbed "Project Blue" and the teaming of
> several rivals certainly makes the cooperation very interesting.

Someone in Germany sent me an e-mail informing me about the cancellation of
Project Blue.  The news is also reported in this week's Flight International.
I guess it's just too good to be true that four major engine companies
would collaborate.  Instead of Project Blue, CFM International will study
the CFM56 Lite and CFM88.  The latter is derived from SNECMA's military M88
engine.  P&W also have two designs on the drawing board: the PW8000 and
JTF180; it will collaborate with MTU on the JTF180.  (Don't know why P&W
skip the PW6000 designation, perhaps the 45000-lb thrust ADP will be the

         |  H Andrew Chuang  |

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