Honeywell plans to run an advanced gas generator by the end of the year. This will form the basis for a new generation of 3,000lb-6,000lb thrust (13-27kN) turbofans for the light and medium business jet market.

The core development, scheduled to be revealed by the company at this week's National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) show in New Orleans, is based around a newly configured axi-centrifugal compressor, combustor and high pressure turbine.

Although the final configuration has still to be decided on, Honeywell commercial propulsion business development director, Victor Valente, says it will have "40% to 50% fewer aerofoils, reduced parts count and lower cost machining."

Honeywell stresses that the advanced technology in the demonstrator will be aimed more at reducing overall cost of ownership by "20% to 30%," rather than "any leaps in performance," says Valente.

Targets therefore include reduced production costs as well as longer intervals between hot section removals and other maintenance and overhaul periods.

"We could be ready for full scale launch, if we have an application, as early as the first half of 2001. Then it would be a three year development programme, so we could see entry into service on a new aircraft at the end of 2004 or early 2005," Valente adds.

The programme builds on the AS900, as well as new technology from the T800 and later TFE731 versions such as effusion cooled combustors, and blisks.

The design also makes extensive use of computational fluid dynamic and three dimensional (3D) aerodynamic design techniques.

Honeywell hopes to keep costs low by cutting complexity to a minimum and, for example, will not incorporate variable geometry guide vanes or stators.

Source: Flight International