Pratt & Whitney has announced upgrades to both its venerable JT8D engine and the PW4000 high bypass ratio turbofan. Improvements to the JT8D are aimed at enabling the engine to meet the latest ICAO Chapter 4 noise rules, which took effect in January. A noise-reducing kit will, says the company, provide a solution to operators of MD-80s wishing to avoid landing charges levied because of excessive noise.
Since its rejection from the Boeing 787 engine contest in April 2004 Pratt & Whitney has had to face up to a harsh new reality–that for the foreseeable future the U.S.’s most venerable engine manufacturer is effectively out of the huge market for the new medium twins from Airbus and Boeing–the A350 and 787.
Ameco Beijing–Air China and Lufthansa formed Aircraft Maintenance and Engineering Corp. (Ameco Beijing) as a 60:40 joint venture in 1989. Its facilities at Beijing Capital International Airport include a four-bay hangar covering 334,000 sq ft, a 108,000-sq-ft paint hangar, 66,000 sq ft of component workshops and an engine repair and overhaul workshop and engine test cell covering another 280,000 sq ft.
Pratt & Whitney has been chosen to power Kingfisher Airlines’ fleet of new Airbus A330s with its PW4168A turbofan. The deal is for 10 engines and one spare and includes an option for a further 10 engines and is valued at $500 million if all options are exercised.
Described as a “sunrise platform” by Marc Lindsley, Northrop Grumman’s director of business development for the Airbus A330-based KC-30 program, the aircraft is perceived to be a worthy successor to the KC-135, which will still be around for many years. He points to the success of the A330 in winning both the Australian and UK air force tanker competitions in which a transport capability was an important requirement.
Boeing has made a start here at Farnborough International toward fulfilling its recent prophecy of airlines spending $2,600 billion, over the next 20 years by revealing orders worth almost $7.9 billion. More business is scheduled to be unveiled today.
British charter airline MyTravel is using an electronic technical log (ETL) to manage its aircraft fleet data, including maintenance requirements and trip reports. This is another step in the goal to achieving a truly paperless cockpit, according to Data Systems & Solutions (DS&S), UK-based developer of the CoreWing ETL.
The Farnborough International airshow appears to have rediscovered its vim and vigor, refreshed by a new format and site facilities. As this year’s show drew to a close, indications were that the event had drawn record attendance on its trade and public days.