One result of the huge deal to sell up to 105 Beechcraft King Air 350i twin-turboprops to the new Wheels Up private charter membership company is that a comprehensive plan was required to support servicing of the airframes and engines. Thus both Hawker Beechcraft Global Customer Support (HBGCS) and Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) signed a long-term service agreement with Wheels Up here in Las Vegas on the eve of the show, covering support of the Wheels Up King Air 350i fleet and their PT6A-60A engines, respectively.
Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6
Timken, known for manufacturing precision roller bearings for a variety of industries, is highlighting its wide range of aerospace products and services at the NBAA show (Booth No. 1327), in particular an expanded turbine engine maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) capability.
As it seeks to prolong the legacy of its 50-year-old PT6 engine dynasty, Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) is laying plans to refresh the epic product range at the top, middle and lower ends. Speaking with AIN ahead of this week’s NBAA show, P&WC president John Saabas confirmed that the manufacturer intends to cap the PT6 portfolio with a 2,000-shp version of the turboprop but indicated it is not yet ready to target a specific launch date.
Ah, that new airplane smell.
Cessna demo pilot Rip Lee and I climb aboard the factory-fresh Grand Caravan EX and I glance over at the Hobbs meter: 4.3 hours total time. Airplanes don’t get much newer than this.
Euravia Engineering and Greenwich AeroGroup have entered into a partnership to provide maintenance, repair and overhaul services for Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A and PT6T turbine engines on fixed- and rotary-wing aircraft in the U.S. Through its MRO facilities (Atlantic Aero in Greensboro N.C., Summit Aviation in Middletown, Del., and Western Aircraft in Boise, Idaho), Greenwich AeroGroup will provide engine inventory and component storage, logistics and distribution services across the U.S. and also between the U.S. and the UK.
Beechcraft said that it accomplished the first flight of a production AT-6 light attack aircraft in Wichita on Tuesday. The first flight of an AT-6 production representative test vehicle occurred in September 2009.
Engine maker Pratt & Whitney Canada (Stand 2009) is here at LABACE to highlight its engine support capabilities, which are primarily handled through the local service center at Sorocaba in the São Paulo region. Established in 1999, the Sorocaba facility is part of the global PWC support network, reporting to the West Virginia overhaul and service center, but is particularly involved in supporting the more than 2,000 PWC engines that are operational in Brazil.
Timken (Stand 2017) is a global company providing a wide range of products, from precision bearings to engine overhaul, but at LABACE the U.S. firm is focused on supporting operators in the Brazilian marketplace. The company produces complex parts such as turbine blades, compressor wheels, combustors and bearings that are the cost-drivers behind engine overhauls.
Brazilian operator TAM Executiva has awarded a contract to Vector Aerospace and its Seca subsidiary to provide maintenance, repair and overhaul covering engines in its fleet. The agreement includes repair, hot-section inspections, testing, modification, overhaul and parts distribution on PT6A and JT15D series turbine engines, and engine repair, major periodic inspection, testing, modification and core zone inspection on the TFE731 series.
Pilatus said here at LABACE yesterday that it will deliver three more of these PC-6 Turbo Porters to Brazil this year, having delivered only one since certification in the country in 2011. The Swiss manufacturer is emphasizing the single turboprop’s short takeoff and landing performance, pointing out that it can operate more economically than helicopters and with superior payload. Maximum payload is 1.2 metric tons, maximum range is 870 nm and this can be achieved operating out of an airstrip shorter than 1,500 feet (440 meters).