Companies

Pratt & Whitney Canada advances hybrid-electric propulsion technology

V Rishi Kumar Hyderabad | Updated on July 16, 2021

With this strategy, the company aims for improvements in aircraft efficiency and make aviation more sustainable

Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC), a business unit of Pratt & Whitney, plans to advance its hybrid-electric propulsion technology and flight demonstrator program as part of a $163 million CAD investment, supported by the governments of Canada and Quebec.

“We see hybrid-electric propulsion systems as one of the key routes to making aircraft of the future even more fuel efficient. We expect that smaller aircraft, including regional airliners, will be the first to benefit from this technology, creating a clear opportunity for India to grow these segments in a sustainable manner,” said Ashmita Sethi, president and country head, Pratt & Whitney.

“India has one of the newest and most fuel efficient aircraft fleets in the world, powered by our GTF, V2500, PT6 and PW100 engine families. So India’s aviation sector is superbly positioned to lead a sustainable flying roadmap in the future.”

The new hybrid-electric propulsion technology will drive significant improvements in aircraft efficiency by optimizing performance across the different phases of flight, allowing the demonstrator to target a 30 per cent reduction in fuel burn and CO2 emissions, compared to a modern regional turboprop airliner.

P&WC is working with De Havilland Aircraft of Canada Ltd (De Havilland Canada) to integrate this hybrid-electric technology into a De Havilland Canada Dash 8-100 flight demonstrator. This demonstrator will include an advanced electric motor and controller from Collins Aerospace, also a Raytheon Technologies business.

“Pratt & Whitney Canada is a leader toward ever more sustainable aircraft propulsion technologies and be an integral part of Canada’s green recovery plan,” said Maria Della Posta, president, Pratt & Whitney Canada. “With a long-time commitment to sustainability and as Canada’s top aerospace investor in research & development, having invested $500 million CAD annually, we are driving economic growth, innovation and workforce expertise to benefit the environment. Hybrid-electric technology has an important role to play in enabling the next step-change in efficiency for aircraft engines, and we are uniquely positioned to demonstrate this potential.”

P&WC will target ground testing in 2022, leading to flight testing of the Dash 8-100 demonstrator in 2024.

Developing hybrid-electric propulsion technology is a core element of Pratt & Whitney’s strategy to make aviation more sustainable. The company is also committed to continually advancing the efficiency of gas turbine engines across its portfolio, while supporting the wider use of sustainable aviation fuels, and pursuing alternative fuels.

Pratt & Whitney, a unit of Raytheon Technologies is engaged in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft and helicopter engines, and auxiliary power units.

Published on July 16, 2021

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