Korean Air selects GP7200 for A380 fleet

Korean Air has selected the Engine Alliance GP7200 to power the airline’s new fleet of Airbus A380 super jumbo aircraft. Korean Air ordered 23 engines for the five firm A380s on order and 13 engines for the three option aircraft. The value of the firm orders is approximately $300 million. If the options are exercised, they would be worth an additional $170 million.

This order gives the Engine Alliance, a joint venture between GE Aircraft Engines and Pratt & Whitney, a 58 percent order share on the A380s for which engines have been selected. The 320 engines on firm order have a value of $4.1 billion.

The Engine Alliance’s GP7200 engine will be certified at an initial thrust rating of 76,500 pounds. Plans call for increasing that certification rating to 81,500 pounds to accommodate A380 growth.

According to a statement, the GP7200 development program continues on track for engine certification in October 2005, followed by flight-testing aboard the A380. Flight test engines are being built now and will go to Airbus in mid-year.

To date the eight development engines in the GP7200 test program have completed more than 4,000 cycles and 1,750 hours of operation. By entry into service the development fleet will have built up more than 15,000 endurance cycles, the equivalent of 105,000 hours of operation.

The engine features a hollow-titanium, swept wide-chord fan; a five-stage low-pressure compressor; a nine-stage high-pressure compressor and a two-stage high-pressure turbine; a low-emissions single annular combustor designed to meet future emissions regulations; and a six-stage low-pressure turbine.