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GE’s integrated cockpit demonstrates cost and environmental benefits


Fuel, emission and noise reductions realized through large area display cockpit suite and flight management technology

Le Bourget - GE’s integrated cockpit at the Paris air show incorporates a large area display suite and the flight management system (FMS) demonstrating the capability to fly precision and optimized descent arrivals that deliver fuel, emission and noise reductions for an integrated Air Traffic Management system. The cockpit is on the GE stand, hall 2A, stand C137.

“Southwest Airlines is an early adopter of this fleet-wide, integrated solution from GE,” said Lorraine Bolsinger, president and CEO of GE Aviation Systems. “We’ve been providing Required Navigation Performance (RNP) capabilities since the 90s when we first demonstrated this with Alaska Airlines in Juneau. We have now advanced the technology with our FMS optimized descent, which is an ecomagination product and we are committed to bring our airline customers savings now with proven products. GE’s FMS optimized descent enables increased capacity along with a potential 6-12% fuel savings for our customers and roughly 20% CO2 and NOx emissions reductions.”

Commercial aviation is reaching the limits of capacity for the air traffic management system and the long-term demand for growth in commercial aviation continues. The key to growth is in the ability to accommodate more flights, while maintaining proper distances between arriving flights.

“The integrated system of GE’s large area display suite and flight management system is a key part of our plans to conduct RNP operations. It allows us to realize significant cost savings with lowered fuel consumption while simultaneously benefitting the environment with reduced emissions”, commented Mike Van de Ven, Executive Vice President, Chief of Operations for Southwest Airlines.

FMS Optimized Descent

Image of: Integrated 737 Cockpit_Optimal Descent

European airlines flying Boeing 737s have been given approval to use an optimized landing approach, made possible through GE’s FMS, that significantly reduces fuel used during descent, lowering CO2 and NOx emissions roughly 20% compared to standard arrival procedures. This groundbreaking effort was initiated at SAS Scandinavian Airlines, where “green approaches” saved hundreds of pounds of fuel and reduced emissions throughout 2008.

“The optimized descent available through GE’s advanced FMS, enables us to operate much more efficiently considering today’s air traffic challenges and economic pressures,” said Niels-Eirik Nertun, Environmental Director, Scandinavian Airlines. “Through partnerships such as this, and with a leader in FMS technology and operations like GE, we were able to significantly reduce our operating costs and help to reduce the aviation industry’s carbon footprint.”

The optimized descent is a money and environment-saving feature of Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) operations into Stockholm, where, in more than 4,000 such approaches, SAS recorded an average fuel savings of 240,000 kg, CO2 reduction of 756 metric tons, NOx (nitrogen oxide) reduction of 2640 kg annually and noise reduction by 50% (65db) for the exposed area.

GE’s integrated cockpit demonstrates the FMS optimized descent high degree of accuracy and predictability required to accommodate more flights, offering the opportunity for airports and airlines to begin using optimized approach procedures. The design and implementation of an optimized descent requires aircraft capable of performing four dimensional trajectory based operations (4-D TBO). GE’s FMS is the first in commercial aviation with all of these capabilities.

The 4-D TBO requires the FMS to predict and precisely fly:

* Latitude, longitude, altitude while meeting a precise arrival time at any point along the flight path
* Ability to communicate current position and predicted trajectory data with air traffic control.

GE’s FMS optimized descent is one of the most recent products to join the ecomagination portfolio and is an example of GE’s commitment to helping customers address business and environmental issues with innovative technologies.

GE Aviation, an operating unit of General Electric Company (NYSE: GE), is a world-leading provider of jet engines, components and integrated systems for commercial and military aircraft. GE Aviation has a global service network to support these offerings. For more information, visit us at


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