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Air Force program reduces costs

WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Ohio, March 16 (UPI) -- The U.S. Air Force announced that an aircraft-engine life-cycle program marked a milestone with a successful reduction in jet-engine maintenance costs.

The Air Force Research Laboratory Materials and Manufacturing Directorate announced its Engine Rotor Life Extension program has saved the Air Force nearly $300 million.

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Officials said the ERLE program has significantly reduced repair costs of the F-15 Eagle and F-16 Fighting Falcon engines through comprehensive data management, fully automated laser inspection technologies and other advanced inspections systems, the Air Force reported.

"The eventual payoff will be an increase in the operational life of fracture-critical turbine engine components and increased depot throughput, as well as improved flight safety and cost reductions per component," Siamack Mazdiyasni, lead project engineer of the directorate's metals, ceramics and non-destructive evaluation division, said in a statement.

"In reducing maintenance, repair and overhaul expenditures, the ERLE program will increase potential funds for modernization."

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