Pratt and Whitney versus General Electric

Feel free to discuss anything here - as long as it is F-16 related.

Which engine do you prefer from a performance/maintenance point of view?

General Electric F110-GE-129
39
53%
Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-229
35
47%
 
Total votes : 74

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Lieven

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Unread post12 Nov 2003, 22:59

The F-16 features the world?s finest fighter engines. The 24,000-pound-class F100-PW-220 powers the F-16A. The F-16C offers a choice of two 29,000-pound-class engines: the <b>Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-229</b> or the <b>General Electric F110-GE-129</b>.

This is an old email I dug up from a visitor. It dates from 1999 (the year in which the previous version of the website came to a grinding halt...). Never mind the critique on our site, we're interested to see which engine is mor epopular on this forum.

"On the F-16 section of your website General Electric Aircraft engines are mentioned several times. However Pratt and Whitney (whose engines power more than 1/2 of the F-16's in service, and whose engines are the exclusive powerplant on the most popular model, the block 15 and who's engines are beginning to get praise once again from the pentagon) get almost no recognition from your site.

You mention a contract for 24 fighters to Egypt and what it's is worth to General Electric, going into brief detail about the contract. Then you have the bias not to mention Pratt and Whitney winning a contract from the Government of Israel to provide F100-229 engines for 50 F-16 fighters.

With options for 60 more fighters that Israel holds this deal has the potential to be at least 2 times as large as the GE deal you report, and with the possibility for the deal to be greater than 4X the GE contract.

Pratt and Whitney company has been making supior engines for the American military for years. They came into promience w/ the J57 of which 28,000 where produced. And continue today to be the maker of the best jet engines in the world for military and commercial applications. And they do so while their main competitor, General Electric Aircraft engines, is given at least twice the ammount of money for development. Pratt being forced to bear the cost of development and design themselves.

Your bias toward GE aircraft engines in undeserving, GE has continued to profit by taking advantage of US governement dollars in commercial programs. Dollars that Pratt has not recieved. GE uses lowball tactics and should not be held in a high regard as you continue to do.

The F100-229 recently received praise from the Pentagon for its flawless performance in Kosovo and Bosnia. With this recent order from Israel, it is clear that this engine and this company deserve to be held in the same regard as GE. Remember the F100 recieved the Collier Trophy, the F110 did not!

Also many of the foreign sales are influenced by the Pentagon who, at this time feels the GE engine is a better choice for export. This being true in a survey of F-16 pilots, the clear majority said they prefer the Pratt and Whitney F100-229 over the GE F110."
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ysslah

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Unread post12 Nov 2003, 23:13

All Korean F-16s have PW powerplants. It seems like at some point they had some problems with fuel pipe, but I guess it's been fixed by now...
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Unread post12 Nov 2003, 23:44

Hi Lieven,

that is one great topic for discussion. I was enthusiastically doing a similiar reserach when Hellenic Air Force chose to operate the PW powered 52+, having operating the GE engines for her 30s & 50s inventory. I have came aross this article, which I believe provides a good background to the Viper Engines evolution.

Regarding the above vote, if I may comment, only Viper Engine Troops who are qualified in both F100-PW & F110-GE engines or flyers who has flown both PW & GE powered Vipers, are able to cast a credible vote? Not to mention, a comparison is considered fair, only if the same thrust power caterogy is taken into consideration?

Having said these, I am certainly eager to listen to opinons, as I have read about how IAF & HAF were troubled by the F110-GE while the RoKAF has her fair share of problem with the F100-PW.

cheers, :D
Last edited by Pumpkin on 26 Sep 2006, 17:47, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread post18 Nov 2003, 03:56

From the maintainer point of view I like the GE better, They are brut thrust engines and the systems are all operated off either fuel or oil which is more reliable in my book. I have run both types also and prefer the GE, it is easier to start and responds alot faster to throttle inputs where as the pratts you can actually feel each stage of AB as it lights, on the GE you feel only the frame shift forward on the pad or in the house when you got to full AB. The 129 will actually move you across the floor of the hushhouse through the acoustic vibrations it puts out alone (plus it is the first time I have ever seen the split tail drone c/c's cover their ears when a viper took off was when I was working 50's in Saudi) The only advantage I see in the P/W is on engine removals and installs, there is raw footage of space on all sides of a P/W in the engine bay when it is being installed. When a GE breaks it BREAKS and the trouble shooting tree is alot faster than that of the P/W which means a quicker fix of the problem. This is my opinion and I know there are guys who like the P/W in the Viper but you wanted a maintainers veiw on it .

Rigo

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Unread post18 Nov 2003, 04:12

Nozzle of F110 engine (left) and F100 (right)
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Unread post18 Nov 2003, 05:08

Technically that is an F101-GE on the left but it is visually very similar to the F110-GE
Last edited by habu2 on 19 Nov 2003, 16:45, edited 1 time in total.
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Unread post18 Nov 2003, 08:36

Pratt & Whitney made the most amazing engine ever designed: the JT-11D a.ka. the J-58. They're just the best jet engine company ever!

Not that I don't like the GE, but given a choice, gonna have to go with the PW. :D
Do your homework, Tiger!
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Unread post18 Nov 2003, 21:32

How much time does it take a well motivated crew ( not baking in the desert sand :D ) to pull an engine, and put in another one and consider that task complete? And as mentioned above, a certain brand name is just a bit easier?

Thanks!
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Unread post19 Nov 2003, 02:23

I can't really cast a fair vote as I have only worked on GE 129's & 110's, but I know on both engines with a good crew and the jet already depaneled we could pull an engine in a half hour to 45 min. The longest part is getting the panels off and doors open. Don't forget the bay inspection after the engine is out. Thats always a pain because no matter how long you look QA always has a way of finding something. Stuffing the engine can be just as quick if you have several guys that know whats going on and training is out the window.

I agree with Rigo 100%. Again I haven't worked the PW personally but have talked w/ plenty who have. Rigo you sum is up great. General Electric you get my vote.

Dave
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elp

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Unread post19 Nov 2003, 15:46

Hey, thanks Dave :!:
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Unread post19 Nov 2003, 16:44

I was always amazed at how the engines were mounted (they mount the same). The engine has a set of brackets on top that fit into the C channel in the top of the engine bay, this channel acts like a monorail allowing the engine to slide into (and out of) the engine bay. The engine slides forward until two large pins butt up against the brackets on each side of the engine bay. It is amazing to me that all 29,000 lbs of thrust is transmitted from the engine to the airframe through just these two pins! I have heard stories the engine would fall out the back of the plane if stood on end but I don't know if I believe that.

You can see the C channel and the left bracket in this photo:

http://www.f-16.net/modules.php?set_alb ... _photo.php

I know there are lots of accessory harnesses, hoses etc to connect but the sheer simplicity of the structural mounting is simply amazing to me.

GregD
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Unread post19 Nov 2003, 18:57

Just two bolts? Wow!
Even the wings use more!
Do your homework, Tiger!

GEB

Unread post19 Nov 2003, 22:01

Having worked both the F100-100 (36th TFW Bitburg AB Ger -- '73-'76) and later on the development and deployment of the F110-GE-100 during/after the Great Engine War between GE & P&W while I worked for GE Aircraft Engines I could take exception to a some of the pros-and-cons I've read herein but except for the following will leave that to another day. And, having been the GE Aircraft Engines (GEAE) Manager for 11 years (1988-1999) with the responsibiliy for the introduction and logistic support of the F110 powered Blk 40 into the Egyptian Air Force (after the EAF had already purchased 40 F100-200 and 40 F100-220 powered A/C - Peace Vector I & PV II), I can say without hesitation that the EAF made their selection to go with the GE powered Blk 40 only after a very intense competition for the engine - selection process critera is still an EAF secret.

The USAF remained neutral during this competition except to remind the EAF that they already had the F100 in the inventory and adding another engine type (F110) may not be the best solution. The EAF has now selected the GE F110 for PV III, PV IV, PV V and the recently delivered PV VI program. Something close to 150 GE powered Blk 40s are now in the hands of the EAF and, to date they still are very happy with the Blk 40.

Bottom Line: GE F110 wins hands down :lol:
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Unread post20 Nov 2003, 01:01

Feedback from ROKAF on PW is not that positive. PW's been not so nice to ROKAF on issues of defect on the power plants. ROKAF and Investigation board blamed engine lots of time for crashes(Which is true, since PW later admitted it) PW blamed ROKAF at first for a long time. Funny part is PW's been so nice to Korean Air.... I personally think PW is the way to go, especially on F15,F-16, 777s
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Unread post20 Nov 2003, 04:43

Well after all the problems Luke has had with the P/W 220 I will take the GE, they have had several crashes due to the burner can cracking and thge whole thing coming out. The engine is held in with 2 thrust mounts that are held in place by a bracket bolted in with 2 large spline bolts. We call the mounts "coke bottles" and they are fracture critical components.

The fastest I have ever installed an engine completely has been 6 hours. That was pulling the engine, doing the bay inspection, getting the bay QA'd anfd then installing and running the new engine. This was on Saturday at Eglin when we an AB blowout on takeoff for a photo chase. This was a Pratt 200 ( what a horrible engine ).

For one the Pratts are irittatingly loud and shrilly running on the ground due to the intake size. The engine download point is always in the hottest area of the engine when compared to the GE which has its download point on the left side opposite of the comm panel on the right. The blades on the Pratt are tiny compared to the GE which are larger and fewer to inspect, The Pratt has that damn probe on the front of the forward bearing dome cover ( the cone looking projection on the engine inlet ) which burns the hell out of you when you touch it doing the intake inspection after flight. The CENC is a mechanical nightmare when you have to replace one of the nozzle actuators on the Pratt where the GE has oil pressure controlled nozzle actuators which are easier and faster to replace.

The GE 129 in the blk 50 on takeoff makes an F-15 appear to be quiet also ( awesome to hear at EOR when you are launching out real no sh*t wild weasel missions and you know those split tail drones need the Harm protection) . Love the GE and will take it any day of the year!

Rigo
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