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Last Updated: Tuesday, 6 April, 2004, 22:49 GMT 23:49 UK
Rolls and GE to make 7E7 engines
7E7 jet - Boeing
Boeing is pinning its hopes on the 7E7 jet
Boeing has said it has selected General Electric and Rolls-Royce engines to power its new 7E7 jet, due to enter service in 2008.

GE and Rolls-Royce will supply next-generation versions of existing engines , called GENX and Trent 1000.

The 7E7 Dreamliner is expected to use 20% less fuel than other midsize jets.

It is the US firm's latest attempt to fight off the challenge from European rival Airbus in the intercontinental jetliner market.

Both engine types will use the same standard interface with the aeroplane, allowing them to be used on any of the three different versions of the 7E7 twinjet.

'Significant decision'

"Our engine for the 7E7 represents the culmination of new technologies for which GE has made considerable investments over many years," said David Calhoun, president and CEO of GE Transportation.

Mike Terrett, the president of Rolls' civil aviation arm, said the deal would help the firm gain a large slice of a multi-billion dollar market.

"For engine sales in this sector, we see a requirement of 3,000 aircraft over 20 years, and the total value for installing spare engines for those aircraft would be in excess of $100bn," he told the BBC's World Business Report.

"We expect, and anticipate getting, a good share of those engines."

Although smaller than Boeing's existing 777 and 747 jet, the new aircraft will be able to carry 200 to 250 passengers on flights of up to 8,300 nautical miles.

Mike Terrett, Rolls Royce head of civil aviation
"It is a very successful day for us."

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