Given the skyrocketing price of oil, the global financial crisis and gloomy forecasts from the travel industry, one might be forgiven for anticipating a message of gloom and doom from a manufacturer of a substantial proportion of the world’s aero engines.
Jet-Care International has recently upgraded its corporate aircraft from a Piper Malibu piston single to a new Cessna CJ1. The UK-based specialist in aero-engine oil and debris analysis took delivery of the new aircraft in August and is keeping it busy with flights all around Europe, including to its new laboratory in Basel, Switzerland. The company also provides engine condition trend monitoring (ECTM) using gas path analysis (GPA).
Pratt & Whitney passes one of the most important milestones in its long history as the much-heralded Geared Turbofan engine takes to the skies this month. Installed and nearly ready to fly aboard the company’s Boeing 747 testbed in the days leading to the start of this week’s Farnborough airshow, the GTF demonstrator underwent 250 hours of ground testing since engineers first ran the engine in November 2007.
Rolls-Royce has introduced a new team of regional customer managers (RCMs) to expand the maintenance and support service available to operators of business aircraft powered by its engines. It announced yesterday that this new support is immediately available on AE3007 and BR710 turbofans.
Honeywell and Pratt & Whitney Canada have agreed to start doing component repairs on some models of each other’s engines. The details of the agreement are still to be formalized, but it is expected that it will cover Honeywell’s TPE331 turboprops and TFE731 turbofans, as well as its 36-100 and 36-150 auxiliary power units. It will also apply to P&WC’s PW100 and PT6 turboprops and its JT15D turbofan.
Pratt & Whitney Canada announced last year at NBAA 2000 that it had embarked on development of a new line of turboprop, turboshaft and turbofan engines, the PW600 series, spanning a power range from 1,000- to 3,000-lb thrust (500- to 2,000-shp), and a demonstration program for geared turbofan engine technology.
EADS Socata at EBACE outlined what its product launch might be next year–a twin-engine business aircraft that is bigger than its TBM 850 turboprop single. “The future product will have two more seats than the [six-seat] TBM,” said Socata CEO Jean-Michel Léonard. Socata expects to make a launch decision early next year. “Before that, four criteria have to be met,” he said.
Price Induction, a startup company based in Anglet, France, is studying a 560-lb-thrust high-bypass-ratio turbofan that would establish a new thrust class. Applications of the DGEN380 would be four-seaters, allowing pilots to upgrade from piston singles to twinjets. Another market could be airline-pilot training.
In the ever-fluid world of aerospace, to build and deliver a thousand of any major aircraft system is a milestone worthy of note. It was appropriate, then, that Phoenix-based Honeywell Engines celebrated the delivery of its 10,000th TFE731 turbofan engine on October 30.
With the completion of its first run on October 31, Pratt & Whitney Canada initiated testing of its 2,500-lb-thrust PW625F engine demonstrator. The company plans to develop a family of turbofans for light business jets. P&WC claims the PW625F will provide optimum performance and “significantly reduced ownership costs.” The engine is aimed at the market now dominated by the Williams FJ44 series.