CFM International has initiated ground testing of the first LEAP-1B engine at Snecma (Safran) facilities in Villaroche, France. The testing launches a two-year program that will culminate in engine certification in 2016 and entry into commercial service on the Boeing 737 MAX airplane in 2017.
The LEAP-1B engine, which is the exclusive powerplant for the 737 MAX family, fired for the first time on June 13th, three days ahead of the schedule set when the program was launched in 2011. After a series of break-in runs, the engine has been operating smoothly and has reached full take-off thrust.
In 2011, Boeing selected the LEAP-1B as the sole powerplant for its new 737 MAX, extending a more than 30-year relationship. CFM has been the only engine provider for the 737 aircraft family since the 737 Classic entered service in 1984.
The foundation of the LEAP engine is heavily rooted in advanced aerodynamics, environmental, and materials technology development programs. It will provide double-digit improvements in fuel consumption and CO2 emissions compared to today's best CFM engine, along with dramatic reductions in engine noise and emissions. All this technology brings with it CFM's legendary reliability and low maintenance costs.