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GE’s Big Bet on Goliath Engines

In 1990, Brian Rowe bet $2 billion on a jet engine design that would go on to influence three decades of propulsion. The GE90’s concept, architecture and technologies allowed for extraordinary gains in the aviation industry, culminating in the new GE9X engine for the Boeing 777X.

The GE9X will be the most fuel-efficient engine GE has ever produced on a per-pounds-of-thrust basis, from the 4th-generation composite fan blades which reduce the blade count to 16, to the Ceramic matrix composite (CMC) materials in the core which deliver twice the strength and greater thermal capabilities than their metal counterparts, with just a third of the weight.


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  1. Best engine manufacturer hands down, been a fan since I was a kid and entered aerospace engineering 4 years ago because of you guys. Keep making stuff at home, don’t let others get those trade secrets.

  2. Definitely the best series of pioneering jet engines ever produced.Definitely the worst biblical narration metaphor fail ever produced… Goliath was defeated and killed. I see the GE9X being successful forever!

  3. It’s amazing how Turbine propulsion has evolved…From pure Jet engines to these behemoth Turbofans. Am I wrong to call them “Ducted Fans” since approximately 80% of the thrust is produced from the fan?

  4. Good idea think big, this is the result of the new era, the era of5 dimentions and more will come to enjoy “electromagnetic” machinessankitoelkiton

  5. This is a nice look at GE Aircraft Engines’ modern large engine effort, from the GE90 for the B777 through the GEnx for the B787 & B747-8, to the new GE9x for the B777X.The shots of the GE90 being tested in the #2 position on the old B747-100 at 4:03 really show the growth from the original P&W JT9D engine in the #1 position. (Yes, funny fact, GE’s original B747-100 testbed had P&W engines. Their new B747-400 testbed, which entered service this year, has GE CF6-80C2 engines.) There some more shots of that setup at the 6:32mark.

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