July 17, 2006 (by Jeff Hollenbeck) - Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp. has signed a letter of intent with Canadian company Magellan Aerospace for work on the F135 engine that will power the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) "Lightning II". The agreement, announced today during a press conference at the Farnborough International Air Show, has a potential value of more than US$20 million over the life of the program.
A Pratt & Whitney F135 flight test engine in full afterburner running at the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base in Fort Worth, Texas. At 40,000 pounds of thrust, the F135 is the most powerful fighter engine ever built.
Under the agreement, Magellan will produce F135 fan sync rings, critical hardware that requires advanced machining capabilities and strict quality standards. Today's award is in addition to previous contracts between Pratt & Whitney and Magellan for engine hardware that brings the total value of F135 work placed to more than US$63 million.
"We are extremely pleased that we are able to extend our relationship with Magellan on the F135 engine," said Ed O'Donnell, director of F135 international programs for Pratt & Whitney. "We have seen first hand that Magellan has the high-technology, high quality manufacturing capacities necessary to support this crucial work. Magellan meets these key requirements, while offering the affordability necessary to produce the best value for our customers."
Magellan is a part of the global F135 team that includes world-class
aerospace companies representing all eight JSF
partner nations. This agreement, along with previously awarded contracts, brings to total value of F135 manufacturing work placed with Canadian companies to more than US$250 million.
"At Magellan we are delighted to have been selected by Pratt & Whitney for this activity on the military aircraft for the future, the Joint Strike Fighter," said Jim Butyniec, Executive Vice President and COO of Magellan Aerospace. "We have great respect for Pratt & Whitney, and are committed to continuing and growing our relationship with Pratt & Whitney on this exciting new program. We are confident that the engine manufacturing expertise we will contribute will be a positive addition to the F135 team."
The technologically advanced F135 is an evolution of the highly
successful F119 engine for the F-22 Raptor. Together the F135 and F119 will have logged approximately 800,000 flight hours before the F-35's introduction into operational service in 2012. At 40,000 pounds of thrust, the F135 is the most powerful fighter engine ever built.
F135 ground test engines have accumulated more than 5,500 hours of testing as part of the Pratt & Whitney System Development and Demonstration program. This is in addition to the more than 3,500 hours F135 engines accumulated as the exclusive power for all JSF concept demonstration ground and flight tests.
In December 2005, Pratt & Whitney delivered the first flight test F135 engine to Lockheed Martin in Fort Worth, Texas. The engine has since been installed and is ready to power the F-35's first flight this fall. The second flight test engine was delivered in June and the third is on track for delivery later this month.
The F135 propulsion system team consists of Pratt & Whitney, the prime contractor with responsibility for the main engine and system integration; Rolls-Royce of the United Kingdom, providing lift components for the STOVL
F-35B; and Hamilton Sundstrand, provider of the F135's control system, external accessories and gearbox.