P&W relocates PW1524G FETT for natural icing tests

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Pratt & Whitney's PW1524G geared turbofan first engine to test (FETT) has been relocated to Manitoba, Canada for cold weather evaluations as the company proceeds with testing on its second test engine intended for the Bombardier CSeries.

Following 200h in testing at the company's West Palm Beach, Florida facility, the 104kN (23,300lb) thrust FETT moved to the Manitoba facility where the engine maker is able to demonstrate natural icing, says P&W commercial engines and global services president, Todd Kallman.

Kallman's comments came the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading (ISTAT) conference in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Kallman says the Manitoba facility is capable of accommodating engines up to 3.8m (140in) in diameter and 667kN (150,000lbs) of thrust and features 260 days a year of natural icing.

Further, the first PW1217G engine, which will power the Mitsubishi Regional Jet, will move to Florida for first testing, with two additional test powerplants currently in the build cycle, says Kallman.

Over the next 12 to 18 months, P&W will have 16 engine cores in its CSeries and MRJ test programmes, Kallman says.

The PW1524G is slated to achieve US FAA certification in 2012, followed by first flight of the 110 to 125-seat Bombardier CS100 later that year.

In May, the engine-maker will also formally inaugurate its Mirabel, Canada production facility that will complete full podding of the engines before delivering to the nearby Bombardier CSeries final assembly line.

The 27,900m2 (300,000ft2) facility includes two test cells capable of accommodating engines up to 222kN (50,000lbs) of thrust, with its nearby Mirabel Aerospace Centre - home to two Boeing 747SP flying test beds - opening in May as well.