Posted on: 20 July 2010 by Mark Howells
Pratt & Whitney will not rest at having three platforms for its PW1000G family and is “talking with Airbus, Embraer and Boeing to discover the potential of putting the geared turbofan on their aircraft,” according to its president, David Hess.
“For Airbus and Boeing, we’re hopeful that there will be re-engining decisions coming up. It’s a big investment for them and it’s a complex decision,” Hess remarked. “When they decide to do something, we’ll be ready.”
Commenting on the LEAP-X competitor, Hess declared, “We don’t know how they’ll do it” in reference to making the same performance improvements that P&W is specifying for the geared turbofan family.
As for the future of IAE if the PW1000G were to win any re-engining programme from the big two, Hess remarked, “Well it won’t be the end with respect to the V2500 which is already out there. IAE will continue for quite some time to support those engines. We wanted to go to market with the geared turbofan under IAE, but Rolls-Royce has obviously said they’re not comfortable with that. But the door is still open.”
The PW1000G’s development has seen tests running to 40,000 cycles on the gear system. “That’s approximately 20 years’ worth of operation. Yet when you open the engine up, it all looks like new.”
Following the announcement that the CSeries engine will go to test in August, Hess confirmed that later this year the first engine for the MRJ will go to test.
Hess was asked about the stalling of CSeries talks with Qatar Airways and whether there is any scepticism regarding the predicted maintenance cost reductions of the PW1000G. “Yes, there is scepticism,” he admitted, “but when we take people through the numbers they realise that those figures are real.
Hess noted that P&W has made a considerable investment in a new facility at Mirabel outside Montreal, Canada, which will be home to flight testing and to the assembly and test of the CSeries and PW800 engines.
In the turboprop market, John Saabas, president, Pratt & Whitney Canada, stated that the company is looking to develop a new core to be ready about four to five years from now which will be able to power a new turboprop designed for 90-100 passengers,
Bernie Baldwin, editor, Low-Fare & Regional Airlines/LARAnews.net