Aircraft engine and component maker GE Aviation has entered a definitive agreement to create a joint venture (JV) with Praxair Surface Technologies, a subsidiary of Praxair, to develop specialised coatings.

The JV will develop and support the application of specialised coatings for aircraft engines of GE Aviation and its France-based JV CFM International.

The coating will be used in existing and future engine models such as the GE9X and LEAP. Once formed, the JV will open a new coatings facility in the southeast of the US. The new facility, Indianapolis facility and another global plant, will help Praxair provide services to GE.

The contract also includes an expansion of services currently provided by Praxair Surface Technologies to GE. With the JV, GE expects to increase its volume of production from a huge backlog of commercial engine orders.

Praxair president Pierre Lüthi said: "We are delighted to expand and formalise our long-standing relationship with GE Aviation and combine efforts to provide exceptional service, capabilities and technologies to the growing aviation industry.

"This specialised coating joint venture with Praxair will enable us to meet our growing engine production volume."

"Together, we will enhance our advanced coating capabilities to provide a dedicated coating source and support the growth of GE’s new engine platforms."

Praxair will hold a majority stake in the JV, which is expected to become operational in the second quarter of this year. The deal is yet to receive regulatory approvals.

GE Aviation supply chain vice-president Colleen Athans said: "This specialised coating joint venture with Praxair will enable us to meet our growing engine production volume.

"The unique coating capabilities will enhance our engines performance and durability, which are key requirements for our customers."

In December, GE conducted core testing for the company’s under-development GE9X engine, which will be used in the Boeing 777X jet.

This year, the company will conduct the first engine test for GE9X and the engine will be flight-tested on GE’s flying testbed in 2017. By 2018, GE9X is expected to receive engine certification.