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GE Aerospace Continues Electrified Powertrain Project with NASA

"New Paint Scheme" a Bland Wrapper for Promising Tech

An update to a running partnership between GE Aerospace and NASA fell through the cracks of the Oshkosh news cycle, when the firm "unveiled" the paint scheme for its upcoming Electrified Powertrain Flight Demonstration (EPFD) aircraft.

While the livery itself is pretty bland, consisting of little more than a dark blue swatch covering the empennage and a GE logo, the aircraft represents another public/private program aimed at creating affordable, sustainable commuter transit. The megawatt-class hybrid electric powertrain in development should see ground and flight tests by "the middle of this decade" according to GE. Boeing and its subsidiary Aurora Flight Sciences are partnering with GE Aerospace to support the flight tests using a modified Saab 340B aircraft powered by GE’s CT7 engines.

“GE Aerospace envisions a more electric future of flight. Our research collaborations with NASA continue to advance state-of-the-art propulsion systems with an important aim — to drive industry efforts to improve efficiency and reduce emissions compared to today’s aircraft engines,” said Arjan Hegeman, general manager of advanced technology for GE Aerospace.

GE Aerospace has announced an expansion to its testing facility at the Electrical Power Integrated Systems Center (EPISCenter) in Dayton, Ohio. That location will see up to $20 million in spending in order to add a new test cell and equipment, hopefully allowing the firm to come out with a feasible commercial hybrid electric propulsion system. Last year, they managed to simulate a flight on NASA's Electric Aircraft Testbed, showing some promising performance. According to those tests, the system could provide single-aisle commercial flight up to 45,000 feet - simulated, at least. 



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