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GE's XA100 Adaptive Cycle Engine, Testing Updates

More Range, Better Combat Effectiveness

GE has started testing on its second XA100 adaptive cycle engine as part of the U.S. Air Force’s Adaptive Engine Transition Program. Testing began on August 26, 2021, at GE’s Evendale, Ohio, altitude test facility.

This is GE’s final planned prototype engine as part of AETP.

GE lists three key innovations that they have added to this engine:

  • An adaptive engine cycle that provides both a high-thrust mode for maximum power and a high-efficiency mode for optimum fuel savings and loiter time
  • A third-stream architecture that provides a step-change in thermal management capability, enabling future mission systems for increased combat effectiveness
  • Extensive use of advanced component technologies, including ceramic matrix composites, polymer matrix composites, and additive manufacturing.

Overall, these factors improve fuel efficiency by 25%, and increase thrust by 10%.

“The U.S. Air Force and Congress have invested more than $4 billion in adaptive cycle engine development over the past 14 years to mature its associated technologies. We’re confident this phase of the program will significantly reduce risk and prepare GE for a low-risk engineering and manufacturing development program, consistent with Air Force objectives,” said David Tweedie, GE Edison Works’ General Manager for Advanced Combat Engines. “Getting our second prototype engine into the test cell means we’re one step closer to getting this transformational technology into the hands of the warfighter.”

“The Air Force has put a tremendous amount of rigor into the AETP product requirements. We believe we’re delivering on those requirements, and a big reason for that is our close collaboration with the Air Force. Our partnership there has been a critical factor in our success,” Tweedie added.


FMI: www.youtube.com/watch?v=5PLjjCS4V-A, www.geaviation.com

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