Bellemare bullish on P&WC’s prospects

 - September 29, 2006, 9:08 AM

The big news from Pratt & Whitney Canada at HeliExpo’05 in Anaheim, Calif., was the announcement of the launch of the PW210S turboshaft engine program. Alain Bellemare, president of Pratt & Whitney Canada, told HAI Convention News that this year the company’s focus at Heli-Expo will be on current products, not new announcements. The Quebec company’s top executive told attendees to expect no new “show stopper” programs to be announced.

Regarding the PW210S, the company’s new engine in the 1,000- shp class, he noted the company is making good progress on the design phase. In addition to the PW210S launch customer (Sikor-sky for the S-76D), Bellemare said Pratt & Whitney Canada is working with other potential customers on additional PW200-series applications.

Is there a PW600 series turboshaft in the company’s future?  Although Frank Robinson said last year in Anaheim that he planned to talk with P&WC and Rolls-Royce during the show about potential turboshaft engines for executive-level helicopters he might consider introducing in the future, Bellemare said the PW600 is not the right size for helicopters. However, he did not rule out other existing or future Pratt & Whitney engines for a turbine Robinson.

P&WC is gearing up for a busy year next year, with not only the Eclipse 500 and Cessna Citation Mustang in their first full year of production, but also the planned certification of the Bell 429 with its PW207S turboshaft planned for the first quarter of 2007 and first deliveries sometime later in the year.

The Sikorsky S-76D is scheduled to begin delivery in mid-2008. It will incorporate many of the features of the S-76++ and improve upon others.

The PW210S has been designed around the S-76D platform and will replace the Turbomeca 2S2 that powers the S-76++. The PW210S will provide an additional 1,000 pounds of lifting capacity at takeoff in hot conditions.

The S-76D is expected to increase hot-and-high lifting capability by 1,400 pounds thanks to a combination of the new P&WC engine and a new all-composite main rotor blade design that will provide an additional 400 pounds of lifting capacity.

When asked if the PW800 technology demonstrator program announced several Heli-Expos ago is close to generating a production engine, Bellemare replied, “The PW800 program…has been a proving ground for advanced design and materials, many of which target the gas turbine engine core. This technology will be certainly adaptable to any potential future Pratt & Whitney product,” he concluded.