Pratt & Whitney and NASA Demonstrate Benefits of Geared TurboFan™ System in Environmentally Responsible Aviation Project
Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company, recently reached a milestone in the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Environmentally Responsible Aviation (ERA) Project by demonstrating unprecedented performance and efficiency of a Geared TurboFan™ ultra-high bypass system, successfully completing 275 hours of fan rig testing in the NASA Low Speed Wind Tunnel. This ultra-high bypass technology will be used to create the next generation of Pratt & Whitney's PurePower® Geared Turbofan engines.
The funding from the ERA Project, developed by NASA to explore technologies that reduce the environmental impact of aviation, will pave the way for the demonstration and maturation of the advanced ultra-high bypass technology. This technology enabled by the Geared TurboFan architecture simultaneously reduces fuel burn, noise and emissions. A key element in the technology maturation is the development and application of advanced Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) tools, which provided the capability to execute highly coupled design and analysis of the ultra-high bypass system for optimization of acoustic, aerodynamic and aero-mechanical performance.
Pratt & Whitney will further mature the technology by completing ground and flight testing in conjunction with the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Continuous Lower Energy, Emissions and Noise (CLEEN) program, an FAA NextGen initiative to accelerate the development of environmentally friendly aircraft technologies.
"Our partnerships with NASA and the FAA are the key to completing the necessary testing to advance the technology for the second generation of the Geared TurboFan system," said Alan Epstein, vice president, Technology & Environment, Pratt & Whitney. "Pratt & Whitney's PurePower Geared TurboFan engines deliver double-digit reductions in fuel burn and environmental emissions. The geared technology has paved the foundation for dramatic improvements in noise and fuel burn."
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), a United States government agency, is responsible for the development of the national civilian space program and aeronautics and aerospace research. Founded in 1958, NASA focuses on aeronautics, human exploration and operations, science and space technology. The Environmentally Responsible Aviation (ERA) Project is a NASA initiative to advance the development of technology that will improve fuel efficiencies, lower noise levels and reduce harmful emissions.
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), a division of the United States Department of Transportation, is the national aviation authority for the United States of America. Initially founded in 1958, and later renamed in 1966, the FAA's mission is to "provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world." The FAA is responsible for regulating the air transportation industry and maintains a nationwide network of air traffic control systems.
The Continuous Lower Energy, Emissions and Noise (CLEEN) program is an FAA initiative to accelerate the development of environmentally friendly aircraft technologies. The program is part of Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen) and focuses on the reduction of aircraft noise, emissions and fuel burn. For more information see http://www.faa.gov/about/office_org/headquarters_offices/apl/research/aircraft_technology/cleen/ and http://www.faa.gov/news/fact_sheets/news_story.cfm?newsId=13924.
Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, auxiliary and ground power units and small turbojet propulsion products. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Connecticut, is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the building and aerospace industries. For updates from United Technologies Corp.'s aerospace businesses visit www.utcaero.com or follow @UTC on Twitter.