PARIS, June 19, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- PARIS AIR SHOW -- Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX), has successfully completed initial design review with the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory on its Adaptive Engine Technology Development (AETD) Program.
The review confirmed that the initial design of Pratt & Whitney's engine has the potential to meet system requirements and establishes the basis for proceeding with preliminary design of the AETD engine configuration. The AETD program is an initiative led by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) and the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center (AFLCMC) to mature critical fuel efficiency technologies and engine design features that could transition into legacy and next-generation military combat aircraft. The goal of the AETD program is to provide a 25 percent improvement in specific fuel consumption and a 10 percent improvement in thrust levels compared to today's fifth-generation combat aircraft engines.
"We're on a path to deliver propulsion technology that goes beyond current fifth-generation capabilities to what will be relevant for future combat aircraft. Increased adaptability for multi-mission roles and enhanced thermal management – all of these requirements will be critical to next generation propulsion," said Bennett Croswell, president, Pratt & Whitney Military Engines. "We're confident our technical approach will ultimately give future combat aircraft added range and payload capabilities, while reducing the cost burden of expensive jet fuel. From an operational perspective, our end goal is to provide the warfighter more flexibility in accomplishing the mission."
In addition to the successful initial design review, the Pratt & Whitney AETD team has completed several major milestones over the past year that include hardware assembly for an initial rig test evaluation of Pratt & Whitney's adaptive fan concept scheduled for this summer at the Air Force compressor research facility. The program's next major milestone is a preliminary design review that will take place in early 2015. This will determine that the design of the AETD engine is ready to proceed to the detailed design, manufacturing and testing phase.