Engine Development, Part 1: Launch to Entry into Service

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By Vincent Valery


Pratt & Whitney Geared Turbofan

Aug 18, 2022, © Leeham News: LNA analyzed the evolution of commercial aircraft development timelines last month. The time between a program launch and entry into service significantly increased over time, including for derivatives.

The increase in development time is primarily the result of more complex and safer airplanes. Introducing new materials, notably a more extensive use of composites, also explain longer development timelines.

LNA now starts a new series on the topic of commercial aircraft jet engines. The goal is to go through significant innovations from the beginning of the jet age.

This first article analyses whether engine development time between launch and entry into service increased significantly over time.

  • Military development led to the first commercial jet engines;
  • The divergence between military and commercial programs;
  • Pushing the envelope of the same fundamental engine architecture;
  • Harder to identify development timeline evolution.

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