Following the September 1967 commitment of corporate funds to develop the engine, the General Electric CF6-6 turbofan was selected in April 1968 to power the McDonnell Douglas DC-10 Series 10 intermediate-range transport aircraft then on order by United Air Lines and American Airlines. This was GE's first major turbofan engine for commercial aviation, and was derived from the company's large TF-39 turbofan that powered the Lockheed C-5A. FAA certification was obtained in September 1970, and airline service began in August 1971.
Construction of the CF6 is modular to facilitate easily removable, interchangeable components that allow airlines to minimize spare-parts holdings and to use sectional overhaul procedures.
The CF6 engine family has a power range of up to 313 KN (72,000 lb) of thrust, and powers other aircraft including the Boeing 747 and 767, McDonnell Douglas MD-11, and Airbus Industrie A300, A310 and A330.
The artifact is displayed in a simulated engine test cell.