Pratt & Whitney is preparing to assemble the next Joint Technology Demonstrator Engine (JTDE), the XTE-66.

The demonstrator, which will begin tests later this year, also forms an initial prototype of the next generation PW7000 fighter engine family.

Like the XTE-66, the PW7000 family is planned around the XTC-66 core. This was designed and built by P&W as part of phase II of the joint US government/ industry Integrated High-Performance Turbine Engine Technology (IHPTET) programme.

The XTC-66 evolved specifically under IHPTET's Advanced Turbine Engine Gas Generator (ATEGG) programme, and is the forerunner of the core that now forms the heart of the commercial PW6000 turbofan and PW8000 geared fan engines.

The entire IHPTET effort is a three-phase programme aimed at doubling propulsion capability by 2003-4. The successful testing of XTE-66 will complete P&W's phase II efforts for the IHPTET programme and provide the basis for the final phase of work for which it is already under contract.

Meanwhile, the XTC-66 core is now being disassembled and inspected at the company's West Palm Beach site in Florida after the completion of tests at P&W's Wilgoos Laboratory in East Hartford, Connecticut.

The company says that component performance "met or exceeded expectations", and it was particularly pleased with results from the core's advanced compressor flowpath design, which progressed from design to tests without the normal rig test.

Source: Flight International