Kenya Airways Selects GEnx-1B Engines to Power Boeing 787 Fleet

Kenya Airways has selected the GEnx-1B engine to power its nine firm Boeing 787 Dreamliners with an option for four additional aircraft. The firm engine order is valued at $380 million (USD) list price.

Speaking at a press briefing in Nairobi today, Kenya Airways Group Managing Director and Chief Executive Dr. Titus Naikuni said the airline had settled on the GEnx-1B engine as GE had designed the engines to provide a base thrust of 70,000 lbs. to power the state-of-the-art Dreamliner aircraft for which the airline has placed nine firm orders with an option to buy four more.

"The 787 Dreamliner is expected to achieve between 15-17% fuel efficiency over the 767 with this particular engine type. This will enable the 787 to fly further with more passengers and cargo than the 767. It is also designed to deliver significant reduction in fuel burn and noise," explained Dr. Naikuni. "In addition, the engines are bigger, quieter and more efficient than the Boeing 767 engines, have reduced fuel burn and longer periods on the wing between overhauls. This means the Dreamliner will come with lower maintenance costs and the ability to be flying longer," noted Dr. Naikuni.

"The GEnx-1B engine's thrust capability along with its improved fuel burn and lower emissions and noise will help Kenya Airways achieve its goals of lower operating costs and outstanding performance that are key to its business plan," said Kevin McAllister, vice president and general manager of Global Sales at GE Aviation.

Based on proven GE90 architecture, the GEnx engine will offer up to 15 percent improved fuel efficiency compared to CF6 engines and this fuel efficiency translates to 15 percent less CO2. The GEnx's innovative twin-annular pre-swirl (TAPS) combustor will dramatically reduce NOx gases as much as 55 percent below today's regulatory limits and other regulated gases as much as 90 percent. Based on the ratio of decibels to pounds of thrust, the GEnx will be the quietest engine GE has produced due to the large, more efficient fan blades that operate at slower tip speed, resulting in about 30 percent lower noise levels. The GEnx will be the world's only jet engine with both a front fan case and fan blades made of carbon fiber composites.

"Fuel accounts for about 40% of the airline's direct costs.  The Boeing 787 has been marketed as being as much as 20% more fuel efficient. With rising fuel prices, fuel efficiency was considered as a critical aspect of the selection criteria," added Dr. Naikuni.

The GEnx-1B engine is the best-selling engine on the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, and the GEnx engine family is the fastest selling engine in GE's history. To date, about 1,300 GEnx engines are on order from customers around the world. The first GEnx-1B engine-powered Boeing 787 Dreamliner was delivered last week.

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Revenue-sharing participants on the GEnx are IHI Corporation of Japan, Avio SpA. of Italy, Volvo Aero of Sweden, MTU of Germany, TechSpace Aero of Belgium, Snecma (SAFRAN Group) of France and Samsung Techwin of Korea.

Source: GE Aviation
Date: Apr 3, 2012