Canadian Manufacturing

Winnipeg to get $50M aircraft R&D centre

GE Aviation expands engine testing presence in Canada

WINNIPEG—GE Canada is building a $50-million research and development centre in Winnipeg to test its commercial and military aircraft engines.

The facility will open later this year on land leased by the Winnipeg Airport Authority. StandardAero, a global company that specializes in aviation engine maintenance, will operate the facility.

GE Aviation spokesperson Deb Case said the centre will use a wind generator for crosswind, ingestion and icing certification testing.

It’ll include test cell capabilities for engines up to 150 inches in diameter and up to 150,000 lbs of thrust.

“This is going to enable us to expand capabilities of engine testing in Canada,” Case said.

The aircraft parts provider currently tests equipment at its Peebles, Ohio facility. But warmer weather south of the border limits when testing can be done.

“Being located in Winnipeg will allow us to extend testing all the way to November and April and get the Canadian region involved in the certification process of GE engines,” Case said.

The design and construction of the centre is expected to create as many as 200 jobs. StandardAero will be looking to hire about 10 workers once the centre opens and up to another 50 in the first five years.

GE Aviation and StandardAero have long-held maintenance agreements for GE’s CF34 engines and CFM International’s CFM56 engines.

“The skills gained through the testing of GE’s latest developmental engines will improve the precision of our engine maintenance, repair and overhaul testing activities,” said Jim Henry, Standard Aero’s vice-president of technology development

Manitoba was also recently chosen for a Rolls Royce and Pratt & Whitney $42-million cold weather engine testing facility.

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