Log in
E-mail
Password
Remember
Forgot password ?
Become a member for free
Sign up
Sign up
Settings
Settings
Dynamic quotes 
OFFON

4-Traders Homepage  >  Equities  >  Nyse  >  General Electric Company    GE

GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY (GE)
Mes dernières consult.
Most popular
Report
SummaryQuotesChartsNewsAnalysisCalendarCompanyFinancialsConsensusRevisions 
News SummaryMost relevantAll newsSector newsTweets

The Heat Is On: Why Ceramics May Be The Hottest New Material For Engineers

share with twitter share with LinkedIn share with facebook
share via e-mail
0
11/14/2017 | 08:35pm CET

People have used ceramics to protect their hands from hot liquids for ages. But as anyone who's ever dropped a coffee mug on the kitchen floor knows, the material is fragile. 'When you hit it, it fails catastrophically,' says GE materials scientist Krishan Luthra.

Still, Luthra couldn't resist the idea that this heat-resistant material could shake up industry - if he could keep it intact. 'I thought it would be the Holy Grail if we could get it inside machines, and get more power and savings out of our jet engines,' he says. 'It could really make an impact.'

Engineers have long known that higher firing temperatures make their machines more efficient. They have devised special coatings and clever ways to 'bleed' air through intricate cooling holes into jet engines and turbines running so hot they would otherwise melt the metal parts working inside them. But scientists like Luthra wanted something better.

He and teams across GE have spent the last three decades developing a special kind of heat-resistant ceramic that is as tough as steel. The material, called a ceramic matrix composite (CMC), can withstand temperatures approaching 2,400 degrees Fahrenheit, where even the most advanced alloys grow soft.

[Attachment]

Top image: A LEAP engine going through testing at GE Aviation's test stand in Peebles, Ohio. It has CMC parts inside. CFM International, the 50-50 joint venture between GE and Safran Aircraft Engines that developed the LEAP engine, has sold almost 14,000 of them, valued at more than $200 billion (U.S. list price). Image credit: CFM International. Above: CMC components could make power plant's with GE's HA-class gas turbines 65 percent efficient, higher than the current world record. Image credit: GE Power.

GE's Oil & Gas business, now part of Baker Hughes, a GE company, first tested parts from the material inside a gas turbine in Florence, Italy, in 2000. Next, GE Power studied similar parts inside its turbine a few years later, making them run for thousands of hours without a problem.

But the material truly took off when GE Aviation started using CMC parts inside efficient jet engines like the LEAP, which powers the latest Airbus, Boeing and Comac planes. CFM International, the 50-50 joint venture between GE and Safran Aircraft Engines that developed the LEAP engine, has sold almost 14,000 of them, valued at more than $200 billion (U.S. list price). The GE9X, the world's largest jet engine, which GE developed for Boeing's next-generation 777X plane, will also have CMC parts.

But the material is now also beginning to gain a foothold in the power industry. To be sure, the latest gas turbines from GE Power already work inside record-breaking power plants. Last year, a power station owned by the French utility EDF reached 62 percent efficiency, a feat so notable that Guinness World Records anointed the station as the world's most efficient combined-cycle power plant. But that record won't likely stand long, according to engineers like John Lammas, chief technology officer for GE Power's gas turbine business. He says that CMCs will help push efficiency to 65 percent.

[Attachment]

GE Aviation is testing rotating blades made from CMCs inside jet engines. Image credit: Adam Senatori for GE Reports.

Lammas isn't chasing world records just for the sake of it. 'Achieving just a 1 percent efficiency gain at the scale GE turbines work at is huge,' he told GE Reports. 'To put it in perspective, a 1,000-megawatt power plant using a pair of GE's HA turbines could save $50 million on fuel over 10 years.'

Lammas' colleagues at GE Power's Advanced Manufacturing Works (AMW) in Greenville, South Carolina, have already deployed these superceramics inside working power plants. They are now using the results to design new CMC 'shrouds' that channel hot air through the high-pressure turbine. 'When you can find a customer that's willing to let us try something, we can get a jump on field experience,' says Kurt Goodwin, who runs AMW. 'With CMCs, they can have a more efficient turbine. They get paid for the extra power they generate and they don't have to pay as much for the fuel.'

Goodwin's team is now studying shrouds that spent as long as seven years working in the field. He's also collaborating closely with his colleagues at GE Aviation to get the design right and reduce production costs. Rick Kennedy, a spokesman for GE Aviation, said that the business unit 'has created a vertically integrated CMC supply chain in the United States … to meeting dramatically growing demand.' It includes a new factory in Huntsville, Alabama, to produce CMC raw materials for GE Power, GE Aviation and the U.S. Department of Defense. 'There's always a few problems that we need to work through and it's really very valuable for both of us to compare notes,' Goodwin says.

Making CMCs is a multistep and secret process. Engineers first cover tiny silicon carbide fibers - five times thinner than a human hair - with a special coating. Next, they embed the fibers in a silicon carbide matrix and further process it. The resulting parts are extremely tough, but also very hard to shape. The team has been experimenting with diamond burr bits, electrical discharge machining, cutters from hard carbide steel and other tools to machine the components. 'Forming and cutting parts made with these materials is challenging to do economically and with quality,' says Eric Bell, ceramics technology manager for CMC shrouds at the AMW.

That's another place where GE Power can scale GE Aviation's experience. For example, the shrouds GE Power is working on are several times larger than their counterparts already working inside jet engines. 'For the same industrial gas turbine hardware, we use on the order of six times the material,' Bell says.

GE has been sharing innovation among its labs and businesses since its inception 125 years ago. The best-selling LEAP jet engine entered service last year. GE Power hopes its efficient turbines will follow a similar path.

[Attachment]

GE Aviation's new factory in Asheville, North Carolina, is using ovens to process ceramic components. Image credit: GE Aviation.

GE - General Electric Company published this content on 14 November 2017 and is solely responsible for the information contained herein.
Distributed by Public, unedited and unaltered, on 14 November 2017 19:34:08 UTC.

share with twitter share with LinkedIn share with facebook
share via e-mail
0
Latest news on GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
08:33p BOEING : Kazakhstan to purchase Boeing planes, build new GE locomotives
07:29p GENERAL ELECTRIC : GE's 2018 gains wiped out as worries about turnaround plan pe..
06:42p Rolls-Royce shares jump as commercial marine business goes on block
06:42p Rolls-Royce shares jump as commercial marine business goes on block
06:27p GENERAL ELECTRIC : For GE, a Breakup Is No Quick Fix
05:17p FIRST GE, NOW ROLLS-ROYCE : Engine Maker Considers Spinoff -- Update
03:39p Rolls-Royce to Exit Commercial Marine Business in Restructuring -- Update
02:09p GENERAL ELECTRIC : GECAS Arranges Sale-Leaseback Plus PDP Financing for 10 A320c..
02:02p GE TRANSPORTATION : Signs Locomotive and Service Agreements Valued over $900 Mil..
12:01p GENERAL ELECTRIC : Crisis talks on general electric
More news
News from SeekingAlpha
03:10p GENERAL ELECTRIC : Massive Disappointment
02:22p GE continues lower as analysts see problems with potential breakup
01:57p GE : On A Wing And A Prayer
01:23p General Electric (GE) Reports on Insurance Update - Slideshow
08:38a Trian behind push to breakup GE
Financials ($)
Sales 2017 124 B
EBIT 2017 10 882 M
Net income 2017 7 225 M
Debt 2017 68 338 M
Yield 2017 4,87%
P/E ratio 2017 24,67
P/E ratio 2018 19,07
EV / Sales 2017 1,82x
EV / Sales 2018 1,70x
Capitalization 158 B
Chart GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
Duration : Period :
General Electric Company Technical Analysis Chart | GE | US3696041033 | 4-Traders
Technical analysis trends GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY
Short TermMid-TermLong Term
TrendsNeutralBearishBearish
Income Statement Evolution
Consensus
Sell
Buy
Mean consensus HOLD
Number of Analysts 16
Average target price 21,2 $
Spread / Average Target 17%
EPS Revisions
Managers
NameTitle
John L. Flannery Chairman & Chief Executive Officer
Daniel Janki Treasurer & Senior VP-Global Operations
Jamie S. Miller Chief Financial Officer
Jim Fowler Chief Information Officer
Victor Abate Chief Technology Officer & Senior Vice President
Sector and Competitors
1st jan.Capitalization (M$)
GENERAL ELECTRIC COMPANY7.51%157 919
3M3.87%145 769
SIEMENS5.90%128 010
HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL3.72%119 493
ILLINOIS TOOL WORKS2.20%57 975
JARDINE MATHESON HOLDINGS LIMITED1.59%45 042