July 15, 2014 / 8:54 AM / in 3 years

GE expects to meet $30 billion air show target early

FARNBOROUGH England (Reuters) - GE Aviation (GE.N) Chief Executive David Joyce said the engine manufacturer expected to achieve its Farnborough Airshow target of $30 billion of orders and commitments by the end of Tuesday.

The logo of U.S. conglomerate General Electric is pictured at the company's site in Belfort, June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Vincent Kessler

“The show’s going very well,” Joyce told reporters at the Farnborough Airshow. “Our customers are very satisfied with progress we’re making on the new engines.”

Joyce also said GE Aviation hoped to finalize an engine deal soon with Qatar Airways over Boeing (BA.N) 777X planes.

Qatar Airways announced a deal for 50 of the 777X, the latest version of Boeing’s best-selling widebody jet, at the Dubai Airshow. It jointly negotiated the deal with Emirates, which last week finalised its $56 bln order to buy 150 of the planes.

“They’re a tough negotiator,” Joyce said of Qatar and its chief executive, Akbar Al Baker. “He’s already agreed to the engines. We hope to get the services contracting done as part of the deal. We are confident we’ll get to a resolution, we always do.”

GE also announced on Tuesday it would be investing $50 million in a facility for additive manufacturing - also known as 3D printing - at its plant in Auburn, Alabama.

The facility, which will make the fuel nozzles for the Leap engines GE makes as part of the CFM joint venture with France’s Safran (SAF.PA), will have as many as 10 printing machines by the end of 2015, with the potential to increase this to over 50.

Greg Morris, general manager, additive technologies, says the group had not yet decided which company would provide the printing machines. GE currently uses EOS, SLM (AM3D.DE), Phoenix and Arcam (ARCM.ST) machines.

“We’re in the final stages of selecting the equipment manufacturers,” Morris told Reuters.

Reporting by Victoria Bryan; Editing by Mark Potter and Jason Neely

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