GE F136

All about the Pratt & Whitney F135 and the (cancelled) General Electric/Rolls-Royce F136
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f22enthusiast

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Unread post07 May 2009, 16:27

I've often wondered why we needed an alternative engine for the F-35 if it already had a more than adequate engine in the P&W F135... It appears now that development of the GE F136 will be terminated in the 2010 defense budget. "More's the pity."
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That_Engine_Guy

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Unread post07 May 2009, 19:08

The F136 won't die that easy... :doh:

It has more lives than a cat!?

I hope Congress can save the Raptor like they have
the F136 in previous budgets...

Keep 'em flyin' :thumb:
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[Airplanes are] near perfect, all they lack is the ability to forgive.
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cywolf32

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Unread post08 May 2009, 05:45

The F136 isn't needed. The pentagon has tried to cancel the program for several years now, with congress stepping in to keep the F136 alive. GE and Rolls Royce are the ones who want the F136, as well as the politicians whose states would benefit from the jobs it creates.

I love GE engines, had the pleasure of working on F110's @ Misawa. But unless it's going really drive down costs or provide something the F135 can't, I don't see the point of it outside of maintenance issues.
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tank_top

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Unread post08 May 2009, 17:06

With the current Administration I don't see GE having a problem getting anything it wants, good or bad. The F136 I don't know enough about to comment on.
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shep1978

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Unread post09 May 2009, 13:10

So whats the F136 all about? Providing a low risk alternative to the F-135 or is it a more powerfull beast and better suited to the F-35?
I really don't know much at all about jet engines but yeah this has made me curious as to why you'd want another engine and what advantages it might hold...?
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Racer497

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Unread post09 May 2009, 14:11

Well I can see the need for a Alt eng. If there is a problem and they ground all f-135 engined a/c, Well that is goin to be alot of jets. But if it's goin to drive up the cost, then do away with it. There is alot more that extra money could fund right now. That is my 2 cents.
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Unread post09 May 2009, 15:08

The only reason the extra engine has survived this long (well, besides Congress I mean)! Is probably because even the politicians remember the early F-15 & F-16 engine troubles. Which was NOTHING compared to what the Navy had to go through with the TF-30 (see http://www.shanaberger.com/engines/TF30.htm and http://www.cnn.com/US/9601/nashville_plane/01-30/index.html) on their F-14 Tomcat's!
Thankfully the F119 is a hell of an engine! Guess we can't call them "Pratt & Shitney's" anymore!:wink:
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Unread post09 May 2009, 15:48

Why does it appear the exhaust is going two different directions? Is that just an optical illusion or does it serve a purpose? I also notices the engine is mounted directly to the floor with I-beams holding it down... wow!
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edwin3060

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Unread post09 May 2009, 16:08

Does the GE F136 retain the same variable bypass design of the F120?
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FlightDreamz

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Unread post09 May 2009, 21:43

tank top wrote:Why does it appear the exhaust is going two different directions?

Time lapse photography showing the range of thrust vectoring to make the photograph look cool. I only found it on a Google Image search and included it because I thought it looked cool! :D
And as far as the I beams go, (didn't catch that the first time I looked at the photo) the F119 puts out a LOT of thrust doesn't it! What I wouldn't give to see them test one of those things in person!
A fighter without a gun . . . is like an airplane without a wing.— Brigadier General Robin Olds, USAF.
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Unread post10 May 2009, 22:47

shep1978 wrote:So whats the F136 all about? Providing a low risk alternative to the F135 or is it a more powerfull beast and better suited to the F-35?
I really don't know much at all about jet engines but yeah this has made me curious as to why you'd want another engine and what advantages it might hold...?


The "alternative" is seen as a way to keep costs down on engine procurement/support due to competition. The theory is; if more than one engine is available for the aircraft users would have a "choice", or that if one engine had issues, not everything in your fleet would be affected.

For initial purchase, yes a competition may prove to be cheaper but; in reality how much more will it cost you to operate a mixed fleet for 30 years? If you had a trucking business and had Kenworth trucks, why would you buy half of them with Cummings engines and half with Detroit Diesels? (Esp if you require the mechanics to be "certified" on each engine type.) Parts from one engine won't fit the other, you'll need twice as much operating stock, twice the technical data, twice as many spares, etc...

No the F136 is not to be "a more powerfull beast" than the F135, they share a common inlet and airframe, so the airflow requirements will be even. (Unlike the F100/F110 situation in the Viper's inlet sizing) It may be a little different +/- but I don't fore see a major performance difference since mass flow can not be greater than it is now.

Racer497 wrote:Well I can see the need for a Alt eng. If there is a problem and they ground all f-135 engined a/c, Well that is goin to be alot of jets. But if it's goin to drive up the cost, then do away with it. There is alot more that extra money could fund right now. That is my 2 cents.


Why does the F-35 need an "alt eng" if the no other aircraft (Save the Viper) has ever had an engine "choice". Has a single engine choice hampered the export of the F/A-18? Did a single engine choice hamper the F-16A or the F-5? Does the USN worry about grounding all of their Super Hornets due to an engine issue. The F120 wasn't pushed as an "alternate" engine for the Raptor. (It did loose the competition due to being considered "high-risk" or "immature".)

Okay, if someone wants a GE in their Lightening II then THEY should fund it, why use DoD $$ to fund an engine that wasn't chosen during the initial contract? The whole premise of a single aircraft/engine for USAF/USN/USMC was to reduce costs. If you purchase 2 engines for 1 aircraft, costs for support will rise over the life of the program. If GE thinks they have a better product, let THEM fund it and try to sell them in open competition. (After all they were never even contracted by LM or Boeing to power the JSF prototypes!?! Must have been a good reason?)

Why should the US-Taxpayer be funding a project selected for termination 3 or 4 times now? That funding could gone towards making additional F-35s that we desperately need.
http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/weapons/RL33390.pdf wrote:Since its inception in 1997, Congress has provided approximately $2.5 billion for the Joint Strike Fighter alternate engine program. The alternate engine program is expected to need an additional $900 million through 2013 to complete the development of the F136 engine.

We've already spent $2.5B on an engine that has been cancelled 3x now, and needs almost another BILLION but has yet to fly?
How many Lightening IIs would that figure have put on the flight line!?! :shock: (about 40 for $3.4B total :mad: )

FlightDreamz wrote:The only reason the extra engine has survived this long (well, besides Congress I mean)! Is probably because even the politicians remember the early F-15 & F-16 engine troubles. Which was NOTHING compared to what the Navy had to go through with the TF-30 on their F-14 Tomcat's!... Thankfully the F119 is a hell of an engine!


True, PW learned it's lesson the hard way with the TF30 and early F100s. The PW-220 and PW-229 versions of the F100 family were much more reliable and safer to operate than the PW-100 and PW-200 versions. The TF30s did improve in the F-111 after years of upgrades and "dash" models.

The F119-PW-100 has over 100,000 flight hours now, and going strong! (and safe :wink: ) So is the F100-PW-229 which is currently the safest engine in ANY Viper! (Zero engine related mishaps in USAF service according to the AF Safety Center) The F100-PW-220 has the second safest cumulative mishap rate in US Vipers. The GE F110 is also a safe motor compared to previous generations of GE fighter engines.

tank_top wrote:Why does it appear the exhaust is going two different directions? Is that just an optical illusion or does it serve a purpose? I also notices the engine is mounted directly to the floor with I-beams holding it down... wow!


Agreed "time lapse" photo of the exhaust in the full up and full down position.

The steel I-Beams you see are in almost every current test-cell. Some are more exposed than others, but run many many feet into the solid reinforced concrete of the floor. What is interesting to note in the photo is the solid linkages that run from the engine to the floor from the sides of the engine to help hold it in place during vectoring tests. Current engines use simple cables to keep the engine from moving.

Note the large turnbuckles at the rear of the thrust-bed that attach it (movable) to the steel of the floor (permanent) Also the small cables that keep the assembly from moving or tipping during operation. The thrust bed can be moved from it's "running position" to the side allowing aircraft to be run in the same facility. (See photo below)

Keep 'em flyin' :thumb:
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Metal painted yellow is attached to the floor, or buried in it. The "thrust-bed" is painted green and can be moved away when disconnected from it's attachment points.
[Airplanes are] near perfect, all they lack is the ability to forgive.
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Scorpion1alpha

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Unread post11 May 2009, 17:05

cywolf32 wrote:The F136 isn't needed.


That_Engine_Guy wrote:Okay, if someone wants a GE in their Lightening II then THEY should fund it, why use DoD $$ to fund an engine that wasn't chosen during the initial contract?


Yup, very much agree.
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FlightDreamz

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Unread post12 May 2009, 01:25

Yep ThatEngineGuy made a hell of a case, if someone wants an alternative engine let THEM fund it! :shock:
A fighter without a gun . . . is like an airplane without a wing.— Brigadier General Robin Olds, USAF.
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Unread post12 May 2009, 04:05

You need a second engine because of Urgent /Immediate Action TCTO’s … not “if” it’s going to happen with the 135, but “when”
With singled engine fighters the motor is critical; two engine fighters not so critical.
History tends to repeat itself … I remember all the “holes” in the F-16 at Nellis in the early 90’s
Do this right … and not risk the possible grounding of all F-35’s because of an engine engineering SNAFU that may not show up for years!
My eyes have seen the glory of the Lord and the esthetics of the Flightline
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cywolf32

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Unread post12 May 2009, 04:38

Due to the maturity of engine design, I would have to disagree. Back in the TF-30/F100 days it would have been a different story, but with todays DEEC systems in place its virtually impossible for a pilot to exceed the engines performance parameters. Look at the F-22's motors. That aircraft does manouvers where almost any engine would stall, yet those engines hum right along. TEG prettty much said it about today's engine safety regarding the F119 and 229 motors.
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