The US Air Force has awarded General Electric a $303 million next-generation fighter jet adaptive engine component technologies contract.
The award includes up to $203 million for “technology maturation and risk reduction services” and a $99.47 million “cost-plus-fixed-fee contract for research and development” through December 2024.
The contract comes months after the service awarded five companies, including General Electric, $4.9 billion in contracts to develop the adaptive engine by 2032.
Adaptive Engine Program
The award is an expansion of the Adaptive Engine Transition Program, an Air Force Life Cycle Management Center initiative to develop next-generation power plants.
The technology employs advanced technologies such as adding a third stream of airflow to the engine for increased range and thrust.
Other benefits include increased cooling capacity for onboard electronics, more electricity, and less heat signature.
F-35 Engine Replacement
The program saw two engines in the testing phase — General Electric’s XA100 and Pratt & Whitney’s XA101 — after an investment of $4 billion.
One of the engines is expected to replace the Whitney F135 powering the current fleet of F-35. It is also expected to power the Next-Generation Air Dominance fighter.