June 18, 2014
CFM begins LEAP-1B engine ground test program
CFM International has initiated ground testing of the first LEAP-1B engine at Snecma (Safran) facilities in Villaroche, France. The testing launches a two-year program that will culminate in engine certification in 2016 and entry into commercial service on the Boeing 737 MAX airplane in 2017. The LEAP-1B engine, which is the exclusive powerplant for the 737 MAX family, fired for the first time on June 13th, three days ahead of the schedule set when the program was launched in 2011. After a series of break-in runs, the engine has been operating smoothly and has reached full take-off thrust. The engine will be on test for the next several weeks, during which CFM will verify its mechanical operation and its operability. This LEAP-1B engine is part of the most extensive ground and flight test certification program in CFM’s history. The total program, which encompasses all three LEAP engine variants, includes 28 ground and CFM flight test engines, along with a total of 32 flight test engines for Boeing, as well as Airbus and COMAC. Over the next three years, these engines will accumulate approximately 40,000 engine cycles leading up to entry into service. By the time this engine enters service, CFM will have simulated more than 15 years of airline service with 60 different engine builds.