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Boeing F-15SE Silent Eagle to be Seoul’s Next Generation Fighter

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F-35 – Avoiding the ‘Death Spiral’

Lt. Gen. Christopher C. Bogdan talks with members of the F-35 Integrated Test Force during his first visit to Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., Jan.22. Bogdan assumed the role of program executive officer for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Program Office in December 2012. (U.S. Air Force photo/Paul Weatherman)It’s essential to keep costs down to avoid the 'death spiral,' something that Air Force Lt. Gen. Christopher C. Bogdan F-35 PEO said he’s seen kill off many programs. "The one thing that our partners care most about is how much this airplane's going to cost"

F-35 Lightning II Resume Flying – ‘Blade Crack Caused By Stressful Testing’

An F-35A aircraft slated for Operational Test at Nellis AFB, Nev., completes a check flight from the Fort Worth, Texas, F-35 factory Oct. 15, 2012 - Photo: Lockheed MartinF-35 Flight will resume soon, following the decision of the US Air Force to end the precautionary grounding of the entire fleet of 51 Joint Strike Fighters, after the discovery of a cracked engine blade in one of the stealth jets.

P&W Receives JSF Engine Contract

The Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) is produced by Lockheed Martin (LMT) but the engine for the advanced tactical aircraft comes from United Technologies (UTX) Pratt & Whitney. As with many other aircraft programs the engine is procured under a separate contract and then provided to the aircraft manufacturer. This means as aircraft options are executed another contract action must take place for the engines.

P&W received their contract recently to support the most recent JSF order. This contract will be for 32 more F135 engines and is the 5th order so far to match the first 5 Low Rate buys of the F-35. No value was given but earlier estimates were of a cost that was close to $40 million per unit.

For several years Congress funded against DoD wishes another engine development program as risk reduction. This was with General Electric (GE) and Rolls-Royce (RR) and several hundred million dollars was given to them for the F136 engine. The idea was to have enough production capability or maintain schedule if there were issues with the primary F135 engine. In the first Obama administration this was a program that was terminated.

The JSF program continues to gain momentum as more are produced, more training conducted and development continues. It still is several years behind its original schedule and has had significant cost growth. This has led to some of the original international partners to re-consider how many aircraft they will buy and the terms of their contracts.

As the largest part of the Pentagon’s budget it would face cuts of several hundred million dollars if the required reductions are spread evenly. This would affect this years operations and perhaps cause further delays in the overall program.

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Pratt & Whitney Delivers First 10 Engines to Boeing for India’s C-17 Aircraft — Press Release

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., Feb. 4, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX), has delivered the first 10 F117 engines to Boeing to power a fleet of C-17 Globemaster III transport aircraft for the Indian Air Force. India’s Ministry of Defence signed a Letter of Offer and Acceptance with the U.S. government in 2011 to acquire 10 C-17s. The first of these C-17 aircraft is now going through a U.S. Air Force flight test program at Edwards Air Force Base in Palmdale, Calif. The Indian Air Force is scheduled to take delivery of its first five C-17s this year and five in 2014.

“Pratt & Whitney is delighted to be delivering the first batch of engines that will power the Indian Air Force’s C-17 fleet and we’re pleased to have them join the growing international fleet that flies this premium airlifter,” said Bev Deachin, vice president, Military Programs and Customer Support, Pratt & Whitney.

The C-17 Globemaster III – the world’s premier heavy airlifter – is powered by four F117 engines, each rated at 40,440 pounds of thrust. The C-17 transport, exclusively powered by Pratt & Whitney engines, is capable of taking off from a 7,600-foot airfield, carrying a payload of 160,600 pounds, and completing a flight of 2,400 nautical miles without refueling. The F117-PW-100 first entered service in 1993 and is a derivative of Pratt & Whitney’s PW2040 commercial engine. With nearly 10 million hours of proven military service and 50 million hours in commercial use, the F117/PW2040 has consistently proven itself as a world-class dependable engine. Through Pratt & Whitney’s ongoing investment in product improvements, the engine continuously surpasses established goals of time on wing and support turnaround time.

Boeing has delivered 250 C-17s featuring F117 engines worldwide, including 32 to international customers. The U.S. Air Force – including active duty National Guard and Reserve units – has taken delivery of 218 C-17s. Other customers include the United Kingdom’s Royal Air Force, the Qatar Emiri Air Force, the Royal Canadian Air Force, the Royal Australian Air Force, the 12-member Strategic Airlift Capability initiative of NATO and Partnership for Peace nations, and the United Arab Emirates Air Force and Air Defence.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning anticipated business opportunities. Actual results may differ materially from those projected as a result of certain risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to changes in the Globemaster III funding related to the C-17 aircraft and F117 engines, changes in government procurement priorities and practices or in the number of aircraft to be built; challenges in the design, development, production and support of technologies; as well as other risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to those detailed from time to time in United Technologies Corporation’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

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Pratt & Whitney Delivers Final Production F119 Engine to the U.S. Air Force — Press Release

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., Jan. 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Pratt & Whitney Military Engines today delivered the 507th and last production F119 engine to the U.S. Air Force for its F-22 Raptor fleet. The F119 Final Engine Delivery ceremony at the Middletown, Conn. Engine Center was held with representatives from the Air Force, Lockheed Martin and Boeing in attendance. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company.

“This is a bittersweet occasion for those of us who have played a part in 12 years of successful production deliveries,” said Bennett Croswell, president of Military Engines at Pratt & Whitney. “The F119 production engine program might be ending but we look forward to a 30-40 year sustainment period in partnership with the Air Force to keep the fleet flying.”

The F119-PW-100 turbofan is the world’s first operational fifth-generation fighter engine in service and is providing dependable power for the F-22 Raptor, an aircraft known for its unparalleled maneuverability and its ability to “supercruise.” The engine, considered one of the Air Force’s most successful, is the forefather of the F135 propulsion system powering the F-35 Lightning II.

As Pratt & Whitney shifts from production to sustainment, the company has partnered with the U.S. Air Force at the Oklahoma City Air Logistics Center to manage scheduled overhauls of the F119 engine fleet.

“We accept this last production engine today, but are looking forward to our partnership with Pratt &Whitney in sustaining the F119 in the F-22 Raptor for decades to come,” said Colonel Gregory M. Gutterman, F-22 Program Director, Fighters and Bombers Directorate, Air Force Materiel Command, during today’s ceremony.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

This release includes “forward looking statements” concerning anticipated business opportunities that are subject to risks and uncertainties, including with regard to the programs described in this release. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated or implied in forward looking statements include changes in government procurement priorities and practices, budget plans, availability of funding and in the type and number of aircraft in flight operations and hours flown; decisions to award contracts to competing suppliers; and challenges in the design, development, production and support of advanced technologies and services. For information identifying other important economic, political, regulatory, legal, technological, competitive and other uncertainties, see UTC’s 10-K, 10-Q and other reports filed with the SEC.

For more information on the Pratt & Whitney F119 engine, visit http://www.pratt-whitney.com/F119_Engine

To view a video of Pratt & Whitney employees’ reflections on the F119 program, visit http://www.pw.utc.com/Videos/Story/f119-retrospective

For more information about Pratt & Whitney, visit http://www.pratt-whitney.com

Twitter: www.twitter.com/prattandwhitney
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/prattandwhitney
YouTube: http://www.youtube.com/prattandwhitney1925

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Pratt & Whitney to Develop Advanced Variable Speed Turbine for Army Rotorcraft — Press Release

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., Nov. 27, 2012 /PRNewswire/ – Pratt & Whitney, a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX), has been awarded a contract by the U.S. Army to research and develop an Advanced Variable-Speed Power Turbine (AVSPOT) to meet the range and lift requirements for current and future force rotorcraft. The AVSPOT program is an initiative by the U.S. Army’s Aviation Applied Technology Directorate, in collaboration with NASA, to develop turbine technology that improves performance, efficiency, and affordability of rotorcraft engines, and to validate that technology in a laboratory environment by 2016.

Although future mission requirements are still being considered, the program aims to develop a power turbine that would allow future medium as well as large rotorcraft to hover at up to 10,000 ft and cruise at up to 25,000 ft altitude while maintaining high operating efficiency. Whereas current state of the art power turbines operate in the 95-105 percent speed range, AVSPOT is intended to allow rotorcraft to optimize power turbine speed in the range of 55-105 percent while optimizing fuel consumption, cost, weight and durability.

There are significant challenges to enabling the higher power and rotor speed needed for takeoff and climb, as well as slower optimized rotor speed at cruise.  To address these challenges, Pratt & Whitney is pursuing a technological approach that reduces the speed of the power turbine while optimizing its efficiency.

“Pratt & Whitney looks forward to participating in the AVSPOT program, and we’re confident we will be able to meet the mission profile requirements needed for future rotorcraft engines,” said Annette Jussaume, general manager, Small Military Engines. “We have the technology know-how that will allow us to develop an efficient high-power turbine that can operate over a wide range of engine speeds.”

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

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Update on Boeing’s (BA) Military Programs — Seeking Alpha

This is an exclusive post I wrote for Seeking Alpha on the current state of Boeing’s military aircraft programs.

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F-35 Continued Production Lands P&W Engine Contract

The F-35 will continue production in FY12 and FY13. The Pentagon has gone ahead and ordered the FY12 buy from Lockheed Martin (LMT) for another 30 or so aircraft for the U.S. Air Force, Marines and Navy as well as various foreign partners. This contract was awarded in December. The full production buy follows the advance procurement purchase made last year to support the long lead items for the latest production batch of the advanced fighter. The future of the program may get more interesting depending on how big a cut the Pentagon needs to make in the FY13 and out. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is the biggest acquisition program in history if all parts of it are executed coming in at well over a trillion dollars for production and support over the program’s lifetime. In order to save funding cuts to this total investment might become easy.

As part of the F-35 production there has to be engines and now that the fight between the F-135 manufactured by Pratt & Whitney, part of United Technologies (UTX), and the alternate engine from General Electric (GE) and Rolls-Royce (RR:LSE) is over those orders need to go to Pratt.

This means that last week as part of the upcoming advanced procurement for future aircraft P&W received a contract worth almost $200 million to support the engine production for 37 F-35 for the U.S., Italy and Australia.

The F-35 despite the fact that the budget wars about to affect the Pentagon may seriously change the program has had a few good weeks. First, Japan decided to buy it to replace some of their F-15 aircraft. Turkey also decided to buy two of the aircraft from a potential order of 100.

The contracts could be worth billions to Lockheed Martin and its supporting contractors as well aid the U.S. by decreasing the price of their aircraft. Every F-35 sold to another country will help keep production quantities up and prices down.

Overall the F-35 forms the core of the U.S. plans to modernize its aircraft fleets. Cuts in its quantities will only mean a requirement for older aircraft to fly longer at greater cost or reduced capability for the United States. This means despite the potential for reductions in U.S. defense spending the F-35 will remain a large part of the budget for the next several years.

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Does Reports of United Technologies Acquisition Herald Start of Major Defense M&A?

Update — On 22 September United Technologies released a press release stating their intent to acquire Goodrich for an estimated price of $18.4 billion. This would be the largest defense and aerospace related acquisition in many years. The transaction will still take several months as it goes through regulatory review. The CEO of United Technologies stated “Goodrich delivers on all of our acquisition criteria. It is strategic to our core, has great technology and people, and strengthens our position in growth markets.”

Late last week various reports began to arise the United Technologies Corp. (UTX), a large and diverse company that among its products makes military helicopters and jet engines, was interested in acquiring either Goodrich Corp. (GR) or Rockwell Collins (COL). Both of these companies make aerospace components for military and commercial uses.

The cost of the deal would be quite high compared to other recent defense M&A. Somewhere in the neighborhood of $7 billion for Goodrich requiring United Technologies to borrow a large amount of the necessary capital. Last year Goodrich’s earnings were around $7 billion while United Technologies’ sales were about $54 billion. Rockwell’s most recent quarter showed $1.19 billion in sales.

All three companies make major components for civil and military aviation so they synergy of the acquisition is there. They also all have significant business with the U.S. Department of Defense and other militaries across the world. The move would also fit in with how United Technologies is organized as it keeps strict lines of business under separate former corporations such as Sikorsky Aircraft, Pratt & Whitney and Hamilton Sundstrand. Moving another company into the group would not be difficult.

To this point there have been some large M&A moves this year by large defense contractors. Both General Dynamics (GD) and Lockheed Martin (LMT) have acquired health technology companies recently with the GD move coming in at close to $1 billion. Northrop Grumman (NOC) also spun off their shipbuilding arm into a new company called Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) rather then sell it but it still could be a target for acquisition.

This move by United Technologies though is much larger and seems to herald a return to the Nineties when medium and even large defense contractors were merged and acquired. This was due to the lack of demand from the U.S. compared to the decade previously and it is expected that U.S. defense spending will decline in the near future due to deficit issues and the reduction in combat in Afghanistan and Iraq. The Senate Appropriations Committee in their mark-up of 2012 spending froze it at 2011 levels which is a cut when compared to what the Administration requested of about $26 billion.

The acquisition also works well for United Technologies as both companies mentioned have a significant part of the civil aviation industry as it does itself. This will allow expansion there that would offset any decline in defense sales.

If this acquisition goes through it might start a chain of similar moves as defense contractors begin to adjust to the new market and parts are jettisoned or added. ITT Corporation just broke off its former defense business into a new company called ITT Exelis. This might be a target for acquisition as it should be similar to the $7 billion in price for Goodrich.

If the United Technologies deal does happen it might be what the defense industry needs to push companies to make decisions about larger M&A that could lead to market contraction similar to the Nineties. Although the Defense Department has made clear that they do not want any of the larger defense contractors merging with each other.

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Pentagon Clarifies Cost Increases on the JSF Production

A few weeks ago when a funding reprogramming from the Defense Department was submitted to the Congress for their consideration it caused Senator John McCain (R-AZ) and the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC) to question the program’s status. As part of the request it was asked by the Air Force to move over $240 million to pay cost increases on the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) first production contracts. The total bill was actually closer to $750 million as the plan was to move internal JSF funding to make up the difference. Needless to say given the history of the program the SASC was not happy to see the further increases.

As part of their response McCain and Senator Levin (D-MI), the Chair, sent the Defense Department six questions about the reprogramming and the program’s funding status. One of the questions asked the Government to state how much of the cost increase is recoverable and most interestingly the cost to terminate the program.

The Pentagon has now responded to parts of the letter. They revealed that Lockheed Martin (LMT), the prime contractor, and Pratt & Whitney, part of United Technologies (UTX), will pay $283 million of the increase based on the cost sharing provisions of the production contracts.

One could assume this means the total bill to the Government now is below $500 million once this figure is subtracted. Unfortunately that is wrong. The total increase may ultimately be closer to $1 billion and the $283 million is the contractor share with the Pentagon picking up the rest, or just over $700 million. Pratt & Whitney estimates that their portion of the increase is about 6% of the total cost of the contracts.

The F-35 has suffered a series of production delays and cost increases due to testing issues and changes in the design of the aircraft. It had long been expected that there would be cost increases with the first three production batches. The Senate, though, has been trying to draw a hard line on future cost increases and have written into their version of the 2012 Authorization Act a requirement that Lockheed pick up all cost overruns beyond the target price and that the contract be a fixed price one. Normally at this stage in the program where much development and testing remains the contract would be cost plus and there would be some risk sharing as on the current ones.

There are many who are starting to get tired of the JSF status. The program has been re-baselined and repriced but it is not near its original schedule and cost. That is why the SASC raised the idea of terminating the program at its current state. This would be expensive, although no official estimate has been made, and would still leave the requirement for a new aircraft that would either require a new development program or a decision to buy an existing U.S. or foreign aircraft.

As with most things about the JSF there will be more to come in the near future on these latest rounds of cost increases and their ultimate effect on the program.

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Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne J-2X Engine for NASA’s Future Human Spaceflight Ready for Test — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne J-2X Engine for NASA’s Future Human Spaceflight Ready for Test

CANOGA PARK, Calif., June 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne completed assembly of the first J-2X upper-stage engine for NASA’s next era of human spaceflight in preparation for demonstration testing expected to begin this month at Stennis Space Center, Miss. The J-2X is a highly efficient and versatile rocket engine with characteristics to power the upper stage of a heavy-lift launch vehicle. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

“Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is proud to have assembled and brought to test NASA’s first new human rated engine in 31 years,” said Jim Maser, President, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. “Built from a proven engine design, the J-2X is a safe and reliable solution for NASA’s future heavy-lift architecture.”

Fueled by liquid hydrogen and liquid oxygen, the J-2X engine will generate 294,000 pounds of thrust to propel a spacecraft into low-Earth orbit. The J-2X can start and restart in space to support of a variety of mission requirements. To view a time-lapse video of engine assembly, click here: http://tinyurl.com/3vxm25f

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, a part of Pratt & Whitney, is a preferred provider of high-value propulsion, power, energy and innovative system solutions used in a wide variety of government and commercial applications, including the main engines for the space shuttle, Atlas and Delta launch vehicles, missile defense systems and advanced hypersonic engines. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is headquartered in Canoga Park, Calif., and has facilities in Huntsville, Ala.; Kennedy Space Center, Fla.; Stennis Space Center, Miss; West Palm Beach, Fla.; and ARDE, Carlstadt, NJ. For more information about Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, go to www.prattwhitneyrocketdyne.com.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and commercial building industries.

SOURCE Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne

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As F-136 Engine Ends Pratt & Whitney Celebrates F-135 Progress for JSF

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) being developed by Lockheed Martin (LMT) is the key modernization program for the U.S. military for the next few decades. The new Lightning II aircraft will replace U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps assets from the Cold War era as well as equip several Allied nations. It is also the largest, most expensive military acquisition program in history. Ultimately several thousand of the aircraft will be built in three variants for use from land bases, aircraft carriers and to supply the short vertical-take-off-and-landing (V/TOL) mission. A key component of this as with any other modern aircraft is the engine. The primary one for the JSF will be the F-135 under development by Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies (UTX) company.

Up to this year the U.S. was pursuing a dual source for the F-35 engine albeit against the wishes of the Defense Department. Congress funded Rolls-Royce (RR:LSE) and General Electric (GE) to develop the F-136 as a form of risk reduction and potential cost savings to the program. Every year for the last several the Department did not request funding for this effort and Congress would add it through the appropriations process. The Obama Administration continued the practice of trying to end the effort and in April made the decision to terminate the contract with the two companies. The two companies continue to lobby Congress and will for now maintain some effort using their own internal funds.

While this is going on in the background P&W continue to support the F-35 program as a whole. Recently the delivered the engine for the latest production batch, LRIP 3. This is the first production lot that will see all three U.S. services receive aircraft as well as two of the Allied participants, the United Kingdom and the Netherlands. The delivery also represents the 21st engine delivered by P&W for the Low Rate Initial Production (LRIP) part of the JSF program.

Also the company received the order for the next batch, LRIP 4, which is worth a little over a billion dollars for the F-135. This is for 37 engines, technical support and engineering services. The latest contract continues price reductions over previous ones which is expected as the program matures and begins larger and more stable orders.

The size of the engine contract alone illustrates the cost and complexity of the program. It also shows why there is such competition for the work. Ideally you would have two suppliers for such a critical piece but the F-35 already went through a fly off an downselect between Boeing (BA) and Lockheed which included the use of the F-135. The program has seen such schedule slip and cost growth that continuing two engines while it may be risk reduction to some may also be unaffordable.

Until the Congress and Defense Department finally agree on just using the F-135 there will be attempts to keep the F-136 alive. At the same time the program continues with more and more production utilizing only the P&W product providing more revenue and earnings to that company.

Photo from kenhodge12′s flickr photostream.

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Cobham Receives Five-Year, US $45M Long-Term Agreement from Pratt & Whitney for Advanced Composite Products — Press Release

Cobham Receives Five-Year, US $45M Long-Term Agreement from Pratt & Whitney for Advanced Composite Products

SAN DIEGO, California – Cobham has received a five-year, US $45 million long-term agreement from Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. company, to manufacture advanced composite products for multiple military aircraft engine applications.

Cobham will produce advanced, medium and high temperature composite structures for both the F135 and F119 engines at the company’s state-of-the-art production facilities in San Diego, California and Suffolk, Virginia.

“We are proud to have this opportunity to grow our excellent working relationship with Pratt & Whitney, and have worked closely with Pratt & Whitney to provide assured manufacturing capabilities for their F135 engine,” said Jeremy Wensinger, president of Cobham Defense Systems division. “This long term agreement represents an important step in realizing our growth plans, and will be establishing dual manufacturing lines in both San Diego and Suffolk to preclude any natural or man-made disasters from taking down the production line.”

Pratt & Whitney’s F135 propulsion system is the engine of choice for the F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter, a fifth generation, advanced, single-engine tactical fighter. The F135 is the derivative of the proven F119 engine, the technologically advanced turbofan engine exclusively powering the U.S. Air Force’s F-22 Raptor.

Cobham has been a key supplier to Pratt & Whitney for more than five years for a variety of composite applications for both military and commercial aircraft engines.

About Cobham

Cobham’s products and services have been at the heart of sophisticated military and civil systems for more than 75 years, keeping people safe, improving communications, and enhancing the capability of land, sea, air and space platforms. The Company has three divisions employing more than 11,000 people on five continents, with customers and partners in over 100 countries and annual revenue of some £1.9bn / $3 billion.

About Cobham Defense Systems:

Cobham Defense Systems division designs, develops and manufactures critical technology for network centric and intelligence operations, enabling transmission and management of information for the digital battlefield. Cobham radar products, specialist antennas and microwave subsystems play critical roles in many of the world’s major defense systems and platforms, including the Aegis radar system, F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter and Standard Missile. The Defense Systems division also provides specialist scientific, systems engineering and technical assistance (SETA) services to Intelligence and Missile Defense agencies.

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Pratt & Whitney to Deliver First JT8D-219 Engine for Re-engined Joint STARS Aircraft — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney to Deliver First JT8D-219 Engine for Re-engined Joint STARS Aircraft

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., March 3, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Pratt & Whitney will deliver its first reconfigured JT8D-219 engine, to Northrop Grumman later this month as part of the U.S. Air Force’s re-engined E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Radar System (Joint STARS) aircraft program. This delivery comes on the heels of FAA certification of several modifications to the engine. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

“This delivery is yet another notable milestone in the long history of the JT8D engine,” said Bev Deachin, vice president, Military Programs and Customer Support, Pratt & Whitney. “The JT8D-219 engine will enable a re-engined Joint STARS aircraft to operate with more thrust, while consuming less fuel, compared to the TF33 engines originally installed. This gives the Joint STARS aircraft higher operational altitude and longer mission duration, while significantly reducing the maintenance burden of the older engines. It’s a win-win proposition for our U.S. Air Force customer.”

Among the engine’s configuration modifications are: a nickel high-pressure compressor rotor system that provides enhanced corrosion resistance, external changes to accommodate mounting the engine under the aircraft’s wing, an enhanced bleed override system, and higher load-carrying towershaft and gearbox elements to accommodate increased power extraction.

If the U.S. Air Force chooses to retrofit its entire Joint STARS fleet, production quantities could be in excess of 80 engines. The JT8D-219 engine is assembled and tested in Pratt & Whitney’s Middletown, Conn., facility.

The current commercial JT8D-219 engine with external modifications has been certified to support B707 re-engining via the Supplemental Type Certificate approved by the FAA for Pratt & Whitney’s Joint Venture partner, Seven Q Seven. Seven Q Seven is a San Antonio, Texas-based company that converts and upgrades aircraft, primarily Boeing 707s, for commercial and military support applications. The E-8C is a modified B707-300.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.
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KC-X Contract Will Have Spillover Effects

The award to Boeing (BA) of the contract to build the new KC-46A tanker will of course affect many other companies. It is one of the largest defense contracts for the next decade. While the total value if all of the planned aircraft are built is closer to $35 billion the initial contract is for $3.5 billion and provides for the initial development and production of the first batch of aircraft.

Because of its size and scope there will be significant work for the subcontractors on the program. Boeing will do final assembly of the aircraft but it needs to procure things like engines, software and aircraft components from other contractors. These are spread out across the country and provide a web of support for Boeing and the program.

The first company that will receive major subcontracts is Pratt & Whitney, part of United Technologies (UTC). They will provide two engines for each aircraft which will be a boost in revenue and work for the next ten years or so. This revenue stream will allow them to maintain production at their facilities and perhaps invest in new engines for other programs.

Rockwell Collins (COL) will also do well. They will make for Boeing the flight deck, software and communications systems. Interestingly they were also supporting the EADS NA (EADS:P) KC-30 program so if either bidder had been chosen they would have won. The company has a history of supporting Boeing aircraft.

The KC-46A contract if it is not protested and delayed will begin to have secondary effects throughout the U.S. defense economy. The Air Force also plans follow on contracts to buy more then the 179 planned tankers under this effort. Those could go to Boeing or to another bidder and they too will have a significant effect on many other defense contractors and suppliers.

Photo from Jerry Gunner’s flickr photostream.

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Republican House Successfully Cancels JSF Second Engine Where Previous Administrations Failed

As part of their continuing resolution providing funding for the Federal government for the rest of Fiscal Year 2011 the Republican led House of Representatives struck funding for the F136 engine planned for the Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) program. The overall bill includes several billion in cuts to the Defense Department as well as much more for Federal spending overall. The second engine is being developed by General Electric (GE) and Rolls-Royce (RR:LSE) while the primary one by Pratt & Whitney, a United Technology Company (UTC).

The idea of having a second source for this critical hardware as risk reduction is sound but for the last several years the Pentagon and Bush and Obama Administrations had requested no funding as it was felt an unnecessary program. Congress through its power over the budget kept funding in each year.

While the House has cut the funding there is still a chance that the Senate will leave it in and the final decision will be made in Conference. One of the primary arguments that occurs each year with budget deliberations is how many jobs would be lost if programs like this were ended. That of course is not supposed to be a rationale for defense spending but carries a lot of weight in Congress. Already stories such as this one “Cut engine wold have meant 200 new jobs in Terre Haute” will be appearing in newspapers, blogs and on TV stations across the U.S. today.

GE released a statement thanking their supporters but obviously turning their eyes to the Senate in an attempt to keep the program going. They wrote “While we are disappointed at the outcome, the debate to preserve competition will continue.” The company also pointed out that studies show that the competition between the engines would save billions over the life of the program.

The F-35 JSF is the largest defense acquisition program in U.S. history and has suffered from schedule delays and cost growth over the last decade. The aircraft will equip large parts of the U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps while also being used by U.S. Allies such as Great Britain, Canada, Australia, Norway and Holland among other countries. With the program’s cost increases the second engine has seen as an expensive luxury.

If the cancellation holds only as the program plays out will it be seen as a wise or premature move. If P&W supports the program effectively and the engine causes no delays or cost increases then the lack of a second source will not matter. If the opposite occurs then there will be finger pointing and recriminations.

Photo from Dysanovic’s Flickr photostream.

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Pratt & Whitney Propulsion System Successfully Powers First Flight of X-47B Navy/Northrop Grumman Unmanned Combat Air System Carrier Demonstration Program — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Propulsion System Successfully Powers First Flight of X-47B Navy/Northrop Grumman Unmanned Combat Air System Carrier Demonstration Program

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., Feb. 7, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Pratt & Whitney’s F100-PW-220U engine and exhaust system have successfully powered the first flight of the Navy / Northrop Grumman (NYSE: NOC) X-47B flight test aircraft for the U.S. Navy’s Unmanned Combat Air System Carrier Demonstration (UCAS-D) program. The successful flight took place at Edwards Air Force Base in California on Feb. 4 and lasted for approximately 29 minutes. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

“Powering the first flight of the X-47B is a momentous event which we are proud to celebrate with our teammates from Northrop Grumman and the United States Navy,” said Jimmy Reed, director of Advanced Engine Programs for Pratt & Whitney. “This is a significant milestone for the UCAS-D flight test program, and initiates the flight evaluations of the unique capabilities of the X-47B.”

Northrop Grumman awarded a contract to Pratt & Whitney in 2008 to develop and integrate the engine and exhaust system for the X-47B. The Pratt & Whitney F100-PW-220U engine, a derivative of the F100-PW-220 and -220E engine models that power the F-15 Eagle and F-16 Falcon, enjoys the maturity gained from over 11 million hours of operational experience.

The F100-PW-220U engine is capable of providing up to 16,000 pounds of thrust and is intended for operation in a maritime environment, including carrier deck operations. The X-47B will demonstrate the capability of an autonomous, low-observable relevant aircraft to be integrated into carrier operations and perform the first-ever unmanned carrier launches and recoveries. Additional flight testing of the X-47B and certification for carrier operations will be conducted in preparation for at-sea carrier trials planned in 2013.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and commercial building industries.

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning future business opportunities. Actual results may differ materially from those projected as a result of certain risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to changes in government procurement priorities and practices or in the number of aircraft to be built; challenges in the design, development, production and support of technologies; as well as other risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to those detailed from time to time in the companies’ Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

SOURCE Pratt & Whitney

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Pratt & Whitney’s Short Take Off/Vertical Landing Variant F135 Engine Receives Initial Service Release — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney’s Short Take Off/Vertical Landing Variant F135 Engine Receives Initial Service Release

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., Jan. 3, 2011 – Pratt & Whitney, a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company, has achieved initial service release (ISR) for the short take off and vertical landing variant (STOVL) F135 engine, marking another major milestone. The propulsion system is now certified as the production configuration and cleared for flight in the Lockheed Martin F-35B stealth fighter. Pratt & Whitney received ISR for the conventional take off and landing/carrier variant (CTOL/CV) F135 engine in February 2010.

“Achieving initial service release for the STOVL propulsion system means all three variants of the F135 engine have met all necessary requirements and proven the safety, reliability and performance of this product. We are one step closer to powering operational flights,” said Bennett Croswell, vice president of F135/F119 Engine Programs, Pratt & Whitney. “I am proud of the F135 STOVL team and our partners at Rolls-Royce, Hamilton Sundstrand and Lockheed Martin for this great program accomplishment. We look forward to seeing the F135-powered Lightning II in operational flight.”

The F135 is in production and is the only engine powering the F-35 Lightning II flight test program today. The F135 CTOL/CV engine and STOVL propulsion system continues to power the F-35 Lightning II with 540 flight tests and more than 750 flight test hours. The F135 has powered all 12 vertical landings and the F135 engine is demonstrating excellent reliability, performance and thrust response. To date, Pratt & Whitney has delivered 12 production F135 engines, including the first two production STOVL propulsion systems.

Pratt & Whitney has designed, developed and tested the F135 to deliver the most advanced fifth generation fighter engine for the United States and its allies around the world. The F135 has been further enhanced with technologies developed in several U.S. Air Force and Navy technology programs.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning future business opportunities and operational engine performance. Actual results may differ materially from those projected as a result of certain risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to changes in funding related to the F-35 aircraft and F135 engines, changes in government procurement priorities and practices or in the number of aircraft to be built; challenges in the design, development, production and support of advanced technologies; as well as other risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to those detailed from time to time in United Technologies Corp.’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings.

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Pratt & Whitney Joins MCA Solutions’ Growing List of Industry-Leading Aerospace & Defense Customers — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Joins MCA Solutions’ Growing List of Industry-Leading Aerospace & Defense Customers

Deep Domain Expertise and Advanced Technology Keep MCA Solutions Out Ahead of Other Service Parts Planning Vendors

PHILADELPHIA (September 23, 2010) — Pratt & Whitney, a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines, is now live with the award-winning MCA Solution Suite for service parts planning and optimization in its Commercial Engines & Global Services (CE&GS) business. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company.

“Pratt & Whitney’s broad range of material solutions lowers our customers’ overall cost of ownership and improves efficiency through predictable and stable maintenance costs and very high service levels,” said Louis Quattrocchi, vice president, Materials Management, Pratt & Whitney CE&GS. “MCA’s extensive aerospace and defense experience combined with its advanced optimization functionality will help us further by reducing inventory and increasing service levels across our global distribution network.”

Robert Tomastik, manager of CE&GS Materials Center of Excellence added, “The MCA Solution Suite provides an integrated software platform with advanced technology for spare parts demand forecasting and inventory planning and is a key enabler for global material optimization across our large-scale aftermarket network.”

MCA has spent years working with industry leaders, including Boeing, Lockheed Martin and the U.S. Navy. Pratt & Whitney is using MCA Demand Forecasting, Inventory Optimization, and Supply Planning to effectively plan and place spare parts throughout its global network to efficiently and cost-effectively service large commercial engines through various maintenance options, which include time and material plans, fixed-priced workscope options and complete dollar-per-hour fleet management plans.

“As many A&D organizations experience a reduction in the number of flying hours generated by their customers as a result of the economy, there’s enormous opportunity to bring new service offerings to market, including performance-based logistics (PBL) or cost per flight hour to reduce costs and increase customer satisfaction,” said Bob Salvucci, president and CEO of MCA Solutions. “We’re incredibly excited to have Pratt & Whitney join our growing portfolio of leading aerospace and defense companies, and look forward to helping the company continuously increase its service business revenue.”

As consolidation in the service parts planning and optimization arena picks up pace, MCA Solutions continues to stand on its own – consistently winning more competitive deals than any other vendor in the space. For more information on MCA Solutions, please visit www.mcasolutions.com.

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About MCA Solutions

MCA Solutions’ award-winning service parts planning and optimization software helps aerospace and defense, high-tech and capital equipment companies of all sizes transform their service supply chains into bottom-line business drivers, by reducing inventory, lowering support costs and improving service levels to maximize customer satisfaction. MCA Solutions is a privately held company headquartered in Philadelphia, and can be reached at www.mcasolutions.com. The company is now blogging at http://blog.mcasolutions.com/.

MCA Solutions, and MCA Solution Suite are trademarks of MCA Solutions, Inc. All other trademarks are property of their respective owners.

About Pratt & Whitney

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and commercial building industries.

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Some Rough Sledding Ahead for JSF Program (Updated 17 September)

UPDATE – The Senate Appropriations Committee (SAC) used their move to cut production by ten aircraft as a way to criticize the whole JSF program overall. They said that the cut was the second option they considered with the first being elimination of all funding in 2011 for the program. The committee while it did not fund the second engine for the aircraft supported it in their language. The House has funded this as they did last year and the money will have to be decided upon in Committee.

The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) has become the major acquisition program underway by the United States. Lockeed Martin’s (LMT) team of contractors along with the joint Air Force and Navy program office is building an advanced aircraft that will be used by the U.S. and many allies to replace the F-16, F/A-18 and AV-8 and Harrier vertical take off aircraft. In order to do this three separate versions will be developed.

Over the last few years the program has suffered schedule problems which have led to cost growth. This has reached a point where the Pentagon under Robert Gates has put a great deal of pressure on Lockheed to control costs. The increases in price have caused some countries like Canada and The Netherlands to rethink their commitment to the program.

In the United States the Congress has also weighed in on the program. The Senate Appropriation Committee marked up the 2011 budget and reduced the planned buy of aircraft from 42 to 32 for next year. They are arguing that Lockheed has not even begun building the aircraft ordered with last buy and that it seems sensible to reduce risk by cutting back.

At the same time the House continues to fund the alternate engine in development for the aircraft. This program has been funded by Congress for several years despite the Air Force’s and Defense Department’s wishes as a potential risk reduction for the system. It also keeps General Electric (GE) and Rolls-Royce (RR:LSE) involved in the program as the primary engine is made by Pratt & Whitney, part of United Technologies (UTC). Gates and the Obama Administration have threatened to veto the budget if the money was kept although they relented in 2010 as the funding did not come out of the core program budget.

Finally the negotiations for the current production buy have taken longer then planned as Lockheed and the Air Force struggle to find a way to reach the cost goals for the program. Part of the problem is that the Pentagon wants to move to a fixed price contract with fee tied to specific events. Most development contracts which this still really is are cost plus some fee based on schedule. The change caused Lockheed to have to submit a new proposal and contract structure which is taking time for the government to review and accept.

Delays in awarding the next phase of the program may only cause further problems down the line. Schedule slip and decreases in quantities will only cause more cost in the years ahead. This may force Allies to wait longer then they have planned as well as the U.S. military to keep older aircraft in service longer. This then leads to higher maintenance costs putting pressure on the overall budget as a whole.

The JSF has had its struggles these last three years and it looks like they will continue in the near term. The program though is necessary and still requires a commitment from the U.S. and the other customers as their options are limited without a decision to accept other aircraft currently in production.

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Pratt & Whitney Completes First PurePower® PW1524G Engine — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Completes First PurePower® PW1524G Engine

MIDDLETOWN, Conn., Aug. 25 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Pratt & Whitney has completed assembly on its first PurePower PW1524G engine for the Bombardier* CSeries* aircraft and will deliver the engine to the company’s West Palm Beach, Fla., facility later this month to initiate testing. The engine Last Bolt Ceremony was held today at Pratt & Whitney’s Middletown Engine Center in Connecticut. This engine marks the beginning of an eight-engine validation and certification program. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.

“Completion of the first PW1524G engine for testing is an important milestone for the CSeries aircraft program,” Benjamin Boehm, vice president, Commercial Aircraft Programs for Bombardier, told Pratt & Whitney employees at the Last Bolt Ceremony today. “We have worked closely with Pratt & Whitney engineers over the past two years to optimize engine performance as we integrated this powerplant into our airplane design. We are very pleased with the progress of the engine program to date and that Pratt & Whitney has completed first engine assembly on time.”

“When we told the world that this engine would change everything, we meant it,” said Bob Saia, vice president, Next Generation Product Family. “The completion of this first full PW1524G engine on time keeps the program on schedule to deliver its extraordinary benefits to customers in 2013. Earlier this year we completed our engine core test program, demonstrating performance and operability on our design targets. This engine will be tested to supplement the core testing, enabling us to demonstrate the full engine performance. Our engine is not a concept. It is real and we have data to validate our product capability.”

The PW1500G engine test program will run a total of eight test engines over the next 24 months with engine certification and aircraft first flight scheduled for 2012. Entry into service is scheduled for 2013. Bombardier has sold CSeries aircraft to German flag carrier, Deutsche Lufthansa, Lease Corporation International and Republic Airways.

Pratt & Whitney recently concluded PurePower engine core testing with more than 260 accumulated test hours. In addition to the core testing, Pratt & Whitney has performed critical module-level testing for the PurePower engine program, including fan drive gear system testing with simulations of more than 60,000 takeoffs and landings, and hundreds of hours of testing on the low and high-pressure compressor with advanced designs meeting or exceeding efficiency and operability goals.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

* Bombardier and CSeries are trademarks of Bombardier Inc. or its subsidiaries.

For more information on the Pratt & Whitney PurePower engine, visit www.purepowerengines.com
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Dueling View on Defense Competition

Last week the former Reagan era U.S. Secretary of Defense John Lehman had an opinion piece in many newspapers across the country discussing the need for competition in large defense contracts. He specifically was writing in support of the dual engine track for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter (JSF). This controversial program where a second source of engines for the advanced multi-role aircraft is being funded by Congress despite the objections of two Administrations, the Pentagon and the Air Force is being defended as risk reduction and as offering potential cost savings. This is how Lehman discusses it.

Certainly the idea is sound in that the second engine in development by General Electric (GE) and Rolls-Royce (RR:LSE) as an alternative to the main one being made by Pratt & Whitney, part of United Technologies (UTC), may end up costing less and be ready sooner but at a time when the program is struggling as well as the whole Federal budget it may be a luxury that the country cannot afford. Lehman cites previous examples of using alternate engines from when he was at the Defense Department that showed “benefits came swiftly and have endured. Reliability, performance and fuel economy improved steadily. Engine-caused accidents dropped. By the second year of full competition, the cost per engine had dropped 20 percent.” He points out that for the three major fighter programs of the Seventies and Eighties — the F-14, 15 and 16 — this approach was used successfully.

For both 2010 and 2011 the Obama defense budget request asked for no funding for the second engine. In the 2010 budget Congress found it by adding money and not taking it out of the core F-35 program. For 2011 the Senate has moved to try and not fund the program but the House markups so far continue it. If the final bills from each part of Congress contain differences it will have to be worked out in Conference. Obama has threatened to veto the bill if it contains the second engine but he did that last year and ended up accepting it. Obviously the Congressional delegations from the states where GE and Rolls-Royce are doing their work support it while the Connecticut delegation where P&W makes their engine have been trying to counter it.

In another view Congressman Tiahrt (R-KS) recently was interviewed about his efforts to promote the use of American contractors for programs. Tiahrt wants the Pentagon to maximize the use of American defense contractors even when it would have to lead to a sole source contract as there would only be one U.S. company able to do the work. The Pentagon does everything it can to avoid sole source contracts as that transfers most of the risk from the contractor to itself leaving little options of the program’s schedules and cost increases. Competition has long been one of the cornerstones of defense acquisition.

Tiahrt believes that the Defense Department must maximize the use of U.S. companies to provides jobs. At this time of current economic problems basically using the defense budget to provide “stimulus”. The problem this faces is that due to the decline of the U.S. industrial base in the Nineties there are often only one U.S. supplier for a product. Tiahrt uses the example of the buying of Russian Mil-17 helicopters for use in Afghanistan by the Afghan military rather then purchasing the UH-60 from Sikorsky, another part of United Technologies. The reasons given for the purchase are more driven by requirements and the needs of the Afghan environment and capability. This is a system they are familiar with, it is simple to maintain and matches well to the environment.

Tiahrt, a former Boeing (BA) employee, is also a big supporter of awarding the new KC-X aerial tanker to that company and preventing the European defense giant, EADS (EADS:P). He had criticized the previous award to Northrop Grumman (NOC) and EADS overturned on Boeing’s protest in 2008. Now that Boeing and EADS are in direct competition for the latest attempt to award this contract he has kept up the criticism.

The problem that the Pentagon faces is only Boeing and EADS have the capability to provide this aircraft. The last tanker that was purchased was the KC-10 in the Eighties made by McDonell Douglas, who are now part of Boeing. With those two companies merged there is no U.S. competitor for the KC-X. In the early part of this decade the U.S. Air Force did award Boeing a sole source lease for KC-767 tankers but this was overturned after Congress found collusion by Air Force and Boeing officials this decision launched the second contest won by Northrop and EADS in 2008.

Tiahrt is right in that the Defense Department should try to award to American companies but the number of those producing major systems has declined. The increase in spending since 9/11 has seen major market penetration by European companies mainly through acquisition of U.S. companies and the establishment of subsidiaries. This has been driven by the need for multiple sources for systems to help keep prices low.

Without a major investment in revitalizing the U.S. industrial base this will be the situation faced anytime a major contract comes up for award Congressman Tiahrt’s protests notwithstanding.

In order to meet Lehman’s desire for competition the U.S. has to allow foriegn bidders which is an unfortunate fact-of-life. Congress will need to face this unless they just want to give contracts to American companies which would counter their desire to do defense purchasing more efficiently and at less cost. The decline of the Nineties is the root cause of this situation and there is no easy short term answer.

KC-10 photo from Mr. T in DC’s flickr photostream.

F-35 photo from Rob Shenk’s flickr photostream.

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Pratt & Whitney Delivers Final F135 Flight Test Engine, First Lot of Production Engines — Press Release

Pratt & Whitney Delivers Final F135 Flight Test Engine, First Lot of Production Engines

EAST HARTFORD, Conn., May 26 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ — Pratt & Whitney has delivered the final F135 flight test engine and the first lot of F135 production engines to the customer, marking yet another major program milestone as the engine continues to successfully power the F-35 flight test program. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE:UTX) company.

“With these two significant milestones achieved, the F135 engine continues its unprecedented demonstration of maturity and dependability for the F-35 Lightning II,” said Bennett Croswell, Vice President of F135 and F119 Engine Programs. “Delivering the final F135 test engine and the first lot of F135 production engines is clear evidence that the F135 has successfully transitioned from a development program to a full production program.”

The full complement of 29 test engines delivered by Pratt & Whitney includes 11 ground test engines and 18 flight test engines. The first lot of F135 production engines consists of four CTOL engines all destined for aircraft that will support the flight training program at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla.

“The F135 program has had a remarkable year completing critical milestones including surpassing 17,500 test hours, receiving Initial Service Release Certification for our Conventional Take Off and Land variant engine, and achieving first vertical landing powered by our Short Take Off Vertical Land variant engine. These two engine delivery milestones further highlight Pratt & Whitney’s dedication to the F-35 program and commitment to our customers,” Croswell said. “I am so proud of the Pratt & Whitney F135 team who have a never-ending focus to deliver on our promises of quality, cost and performance.”

Pratt & Whitney, the only engine manufacturer producing fifth generation propulsion systems, has designed, developed and tested the F135 to deliver the most advanced fifth generation fighter engine for the U.S. Air Force, Marine Corps and Navy, as well as for eight international partner countries. The F135 is derived from proven technology of the only operational fifth generation fighter engine, the Pratt & Whitney F119 that exclusively powers the F-22 with nearly 300,000 hours. It has been further enhanced with technologies developed in several Air Force and Navy technology programs.

The F135 propulsion system has proven it can meet diverse aircraft requirements, and the ground and flight test experience demonstrates the capability of the F135 engine for armed forces around the world. The Pratt & Whitney F135 engine continues to be the only engine powering the successful Lockheed Martin Flight Test Program.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and building industries.

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MDA Tasks Rocketdyne For New Missile Engine

The Missile Defense Agency (MDA) awarded Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne (UT) a contract to begin development of a new liquid fueled rocket engine. This engine may become the upper stage of an interceptor to destroy incoming ballistic missiles. The total value of this contract is just over $20 million.

The engine will have to be used on land based systems as the Navy does not allow liquid fueled missiles aboard ships for safety reasons. The contract will be for the development of components and tests for risk reduction. The end result will be a ground static test of the engine’s thrust.

Photo from mightyohm’s flickr photostream.

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