Pratt & Whitney Canada announces helicopter engine contracts

Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) has made two announcements about new contracts with helicopter manufacturers at HELI-EXPO 2013, the world’s largest helicopter trade show, currently running in Las Vegas, Nevada.

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The Quebec-based company will provide its PT6T-9 Twin-Pac Engines to power Bell Helicopter’s upgraded Bell 412EPI helicopter. PT6T-9 engines have been in use for more than four decades. The latest version of the turboshaft engine has electronic engine control with hydro mechanical backup, a feature that P&WC says reduces pilot workload and provides “unmatched” reliability. Indeed, P&WC says its PT6T-9 engine has reliability rates that are “ten times better than the industry standard.”

A Bell Helicopter spokesman said that the new engines will provide “significant performance improvements,” including additional payload.

In a second announcement at HELI-EXPO, P&WC said that Eurocopter, the largest helicopter manufacturer in the world, will use the PW206B3 engines to power its new EC135 P3 helicopter. This is a light, twin-engine helicopter of the type for which the PW200 family of engines was specifically created. It is highly regarded, according to P&WC VP of marketing Richard Dussault, for its “high power-to-weight ratio, reliability, and environmental performance.”

The PW200 engine, which P&WC says is regarded as the benchmark for light twin-engine helicopters in the 600 shp (shaft horsepower) to 700 shp class, has automatic start and automatic power sharing between the two engines. It offers the lowest emission levels in its class and competitive maintenance costs. Engine line maintenance can be performed without engine removal or scheduled oil change or vibration monitoring and offers a 4,000-hour TBO with on-condition HSI (hot-section inspection).

The EC135 has a projected entry into service of 2014.

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