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Pratt & Whitney PurePower engine for Airbus A320neo soars on wing: begins first flight test program

The Pratt & Whitney PurePower PW1100G-JM engine successfully completed its first flight May 15, launching the engine family's flight test program. The PW1100G-JM engine for the Airbus A320neo aircraft flew on Pratt & Whitney's Boeing 747SP flying test bed at the company's Mirabel Aerospace Centre, in Mirabel, Quebec, Canada. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. company (NYSE: UTX).

"This first flight milestone adds to the more than 460 hours of flight testing already logged for the PurePower engine program," said Bob Saia, vice president, Pratt & Whitney Commercial Development Programs. "The first flight went smoothly and cleared the way for about 40 flights planned for this phase of the program. We are very pleased with the overall design maturity of our PW1100G-JM engine this early in the test program. Our family design strategy is enabling this program to initiate flight testing and certification testing earlier than our earlier programs."

The successful ground test program led to more than 365 hours of ground performance and operability testing which cleared the way for this first flight. Three additional PW1100G-JM engines are conducting rigorous ground testing at Pratt & Whitney. To date, the PurePower engine program has completed more than 4,800 hours and 13,700 cycles of full engine testing.

Engine certification for the PW1100G-JM engine is planned for third quarter of 2014 with entry into service planned for the fourth quarter of 2015. 

Results continue to validate that the PW1100G-JM is on track to meet all program commitments including: durability, reduced emissions, drastically lower noise footprint and double digit fuel burn reduction. The PurePower engine family uses an advanced gear system allowing the engine's fan to operate at a different speed than the low-pressure compressor and turbine. The combination of the gear system and an all-new advanced core deliver double-digit improvements in fuel efficiency, environmental emissions and noise.

A key development resulting from technology improvements and rigorous testing of the PW1100G-JM engine was optimizing the engine fan's configuration. Airbus and Pratt & Whitney agreed to simplify the propulsion system by removing the Variable Area Fan Nozzle (VAFN) from the A320neo nacelle after the fan blade demonstrated better performance across the flight spectrum.

The PurePower engine family also shares advanced aerodynamics, lightweight materials and advanced turbine materials. The engine's advanced core consists of an ultra-efficient high-pressure compressor, a low-emissions combustor, and state of the art high-pressure turbine module.

Pratt & Whitney's sister company, UTC Aerospace Systems supplies the Nacelle and Thrust Reverser systems, which provides improved fuel savings and noise reduction, a complete package of controls and accessories, Electric Power Generation Systems (EPGS) and the Overheat Detection System.

Press release issued by Pratt & Whitney Large Commercial Engines on June 3, 2013


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Pratt & Whitney Large Commercial Engines Turbofan Engines


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Airbus A320


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