GE90 comments

From:         rna@leland.Stanford.EDU (Robert Ashcroft)
Date:         21 Nov 94 13:18:57 
Organization: Stanford University, CA 94305, USA
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A Pratt and Whitney employee sent me the following to be posted:

I'm responding by e-mail since my access to the Net is at the moment
read-only.  Perhaps if you find my comments of interest, you'll post them.
 
GE actually has two separate sets of problems with the GE-90.  The one you
spoke of involves their petition to change the rules with respect to 
certification requirements.  One requirement is to explosively fail a fan
blade while the engine is operating at max power.  The traditional way to do 
this is to blow the blade root apart.  P&W has done this and Rolls Royce
expects to soon, if they haven't already.  GE wants to fail the blade 
further away from the center of the engine.  Much less mass, so less
energy released.  Speculation is that they gotta have the waiver, 
because they know they cannot pass the old test.
 
In addition, they are way behind in their experimental test plan, because
parts in their test engines keep failing.  The most recent major failure
was in the lenticular seal between (I think) th\e high and low turbines.
 
I must declare an interest:  I'm a 20 year employee of P&W, and I am
truly outraged at what GE is trying to do with the FAA on this fan 
containment test.