April 15, 2015
GE Aviation’s first additive manufactured part takes off on a GE90 engine
The GE90 engine, which was the first jet engine to utilize composite fiber polymeric material on the front fan blades 20 years ago, achieved another milestone—becoming the first GE engine to incorporate an additive manufactured component for the T25 sensor housing. The U.S Federal Aviation Administration granted certification of the T25 engine sensor for the GE90-94B engine in February. The upgraded T25 sensor, located in the inlet to the high pressure compressor, is being retrofitted into more than 400 GE90-94B engines in service. The T25 sensor provides pressure and temperature measurements for the engine’s control system. “Additive manufacturing has allowed GE engineers to quickly change the geometry through rapid prototyping and producing production parts, saving months of traditional cycle time for the T25 sensor housing without impacting the sensor’s capabilities,” said Bill Millhaem, general manager of the GE90/GE9X engine program at GE Aviation. The T25 sensor housing is just the start of additive manufacturing at GE Aviation. Several next-generation engines currently in development will incorporate the advance manufacturing technique. On the LEAP engine for narrowbody aircraft and the GE9X for the Boeing 777X aircraft, GE Aviation will produce part of the fuel nozzles with additive manufacturing.