GE opens aircraft engine testing, R&D centre in Winnipeg

Dan Comand
February 07, 2012
Written by
GE announced the opening of a new $50 million Aircraft Engine Testing, Research and Development Centre (TRDC) in Winnipeg. The new centre will perform icing certification testing on GE's jet engines, as well as develop advanced testing methodologies and equipment for GE Aviation's aircraft engines.
Today's announcement reinforces GE Canada's commitment to investing in innovation and commercialization across the country.  "This is a terrific example of how research and partnerships are driving new, innovative technology that can be applied within the aviation industry to drive productivity in Canada and also internationally," says Elyse Allan, President and CEO, GE Canada. 


The 122,500 square foot facility, located at the James A. Richardson International Airport in Winnipeg, Manitoba, is a partnership between GE and StandardAero.  StandardAero will maintain and operate the certification test center.  "This marks a significant milestone in the partnership between StandardAero and GE," says Rob Mionis, President & CEO, StandardAero. "We've enjoyed a long standing relationship with GE.  Today, with the dedication of this new engine testing and R&D facility, we have become a key GE support partner in the testing and maintenance of their line of future, state-of-the-art, fuel efficient engines. We're proud to work with GE and even more proud knowing that our reputation for quality and service reputation has positioned us to be the partner of choice for a global leader in commercial aircraft engines."

"Winnipeg is a great location for our new facility," notes Allan.  "Winnipeg's climate is a natural choice for icing certification testing, there is a secure site location, and we have access to StandardAero's skilled workforce who are trained and familiar with GE's engine testing and test cell design."

The centre will initially include 10 employees, with the potential to grow to 50 employees over the next five years. The investment in the GE Aviation Engine Testing, Research and Development Centre supports GE's Industrial Regional Benefits program inCanada.

The center is designed to test gas turbine engines up to 150 inches in diameter and up to 150,000 lbs of thrust, and has capabilities to accommodate high performance engines. The facility utilizes a state-of-the-art noise reduction system with 50-foot high noise attenuation walls, 16-foot diameter augmentor tube, and 51 foot high exhaust stack. In addition, the facility incorporates a translating wind tunnel to enable future expansion of the facility for year-round testing in other areas, such as performance and endurance testing, bird ingestion, ice crystal and mixed phase testing.

Financial assistance from Western Economic Diversification Canada has been provided to WestCaRD a non-profit organization partnering with GE Canada and StandardAero.  Together they will undertake engine testing and research and technology development creating opportunities for Manitoba companies and educational institutions to participate in the planned enhancements to the GE Testing Research & Development Centre.

"GE Aviation is in the midst of record new engine product development programs," notes Kevin Kanter, engineering executive of GE Aviation's Design & Integration Systems Engineering. "The new icing testing, research and development centre will expand GE's testing capacity and allow us to meet our commitments to customers."

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