Airbus reported on May 31 that its single-aisle aircraft, the A320neo, has received type certification from the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) and US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the second certified engine option using the CFM International LEAP-1A. This certification paves the way for the delivery of the first A320neo equipped with this engine type in mid-2016. It comes six months after the awarding of an initial certificate of airworthiness for the A320neo with a Pratt & Whitney engine option. The first A320neo was delivered in January of this year.
The two LEAP-powered aircraft assigned to the flight test campaign have now successfully accumulated more than 1,000 flight hours in more than 350 flights – including 150 flight hours completed with the same aircraft in an airline-like operating environment to ensure operational maturity when it enters into service. Certification of the remaining aircraft/engine variants with LEAP engines will follow in the coming months. When all flight testing is complete, the Airbus ‘neo’ development fleet (with both engine options) will have achieved a combined total of 3,000 flight hours.
CFM International is a 50/50 joint company between GE and Safran Aircraft Engines.