GE Aviation Systems
Company typeSubsidiary
FoundedJanuary 3, 1963; 61 years ago (1963-01-03)
Number of employees
37,800 (2007)[1]
ParentGE Aerospace

GE Aviation Systems (formerly Smiths Aerospace) is an American aerospace engineering, aircraft engine and aircraft parts manufacturer.

Smiths Aerospace was formerly one of four business units of Smiths Group plc., an engineering company and constituent of the FTSE 100 share index. However, it was announced on January 15, 2007 that Smiths Group was divesting Smiths Aerospace to General Electric for US $4.8 billion.[2] Smiths Aerospace, which was an important supplier, became an operating subsidiary of GE Aviation. This acquisition reportedly gives the combined unit the clout to resist pricing pressures from its two largest customers, Boeing Commercial Airplanes and Airbus.[2] Analysts further assert that it will enable General Electric to acquire assets similar to those it desired in its failed bid for Honeywell in 2000.[2] GE Aviation completed the transaction on May 4, 2007.[3]


The company is involved with Boeing's KC-767[4] and F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, Lockheed Martin's F-35 Lightning II, F-22 Raptor, and C-130J Hercules, and the Eurofighter Typhoon. Smiths engine components equip many major military and civil gas turbine engines, providing critical technologies from intake to exhaust.


Smiths Aerospace was initially formed from the takeover of TI Group's aerospace activities, including firms such as Dowty Rotol. In 2000, they acquired the former electronics and avionics division of Fairchild Defense from Orbital Sciences corporation.[5]