French engine manufacturer Snecma is developing a new high-pressure core for regional jet applications, dubbed DEM 21 for “21st century demonstrator,” in the 12,000- to 17,000-lb-thrust range. The program may provide the basis for variants capable of powering regional airplanes of up to 70 seats.
Pratt & Whitney Canada (Booth No. 463) now has two major new business aircraft powerplant programs underway, with Bombardier having just selected it to provide the PW308B turbofan for its new Learjet 85 model. Meanwhile, detailed design work has begun for the PW810 engine that will drive Cessna’s new Citation Columbus large cabin aircraft.
Snecma announced here at EBACE that the core demonstrator of its Silvercrest business jet engine has completed a series of tests. The campaign ended on March 31 after four months of trials. The core engine ran 80 hours, including 60 hours ignited. During the tests, the core reached its nominal takeoff speed–20,300 rpm. According to Snecma, a subsidiary of Safran (Booth No.
What presented the impetus for the PW810’s development?
When we started to talk about the PW800 family [in the late 1990s], we were talking about an engine for the next generation of regional aircraft.
UK-headquartered Spectro, and Jet-Care, both divisions and trading names of Palace International, Ltd. (Booth No. 1523), have returned to EBACE with their largest ever range of performance monitoring programs, focusing on the Pratt & Whitney Canada series of small turbofans and turboprops. At the same time, Jet-Care is highlighting its condition monitoring service, which it now is offering to helicopter operators.
A year ago, EBACE was full of talk about which engine manufacturers would compete for the upcoming requirement for a 10,000-pound-thrust class engine to power the new generation of super-midsize business jets. At that time, no fewer than five companies appeared to be serious about competing in the sector.
Safire Aircraft, thanks to a new “Swiss syndicate of investors,” has gotten fresh funding that it claims will carry development of the S-26 very light jet through the aircraft’s first flight.
Turbine-engine technology development is going in two directions. One is the development of new technology to push the envelope of performance, operational safety, maintainability and reliability. The other is to refine and update existing engines for long-term use, especially in light of more stringent Stage 4 requirements and existing Stage 3 rules.
The PW600 family of small turbofans, in the form of a 2,500-lb-thrust demonstrator engine, entered flight test last month mounted on P&WC’s Boeing 720 testbed. The engine was tested to an altitude of 43,000 ft and performance, handling and relight testing “exceeded our expectations,” said P&WC director of small turbofans Maurice Weinberg. The engine has not yet been selected for any specific airframe.
Two NASA-industry partnerships could produce tangible benefits for aircraft operators in the near term. The turbofan engine research is being conducted by NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland as part of its aerospace propulsion and power program, the same division that Williams International teamed up with to develop the 700-lb-thrust FJX2 turbofan.