Members of the International Aero Engines consortium have agreed to extend their partnerships to 2045 despite philosophical differences on the design of future engines.
Japanese Aero Engines, MTU, Pratt & Whitney (P&W) and Rolls-Royce formed IAE in 1983 to create the V2500 engine that is an option on Airbus narrowbodies, and nearly 6,500 engines are either in service or on order.
During the last couple of years uncertainty has built regarding the partnership, as P&W has marketed its geared turbofan for next-generation narrowbody designs. The engine has been selected to power the re-engined Airbus A320neo, Bombardier CSeries, Mitsubishi Regional Jet and the Irkut MS-21.
Rolls-Royce does not embrace the geared turbofan design, and has opted to carry out extensive testing of open rotor technologies for development on next-generation narrowbodies.
It remains unclear how the IAE partners plan to approach engine offerings on next-generation narrowbodies. However, IAE CEO Ian Aitken states: "Our substantial investment and ability to develop and apply our technology will contribute to our success as we produce these engines for many years to come."