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Wed, Feb 28, 2007

First Production PW6000-Powered A318 Takes Flight

Jet Will Enter Service With LAN In May

A new engine has taken flight for the littlest Airbus. The first production A318 powered by two Pratt & Whitney PW6000 engines completed its first flight Monday, from the Airbus facility in Hamburg, Germany. The airplane, which will go into service with LAN Airlines of Chile in May 2007, flew for more than four hours and performed a series of system checks in preparation for delivery.

"The PW6000 engines performed flawlessly," Tom Pelland, PW6000 program director for Pratt & Whitney, told ANN. "This successful inaugural flight is the first step for a smooth entry into service with LAN Airlines and marks the production launch of another Pratt & Whitney dependable engine."

The PW6000 is designed to provide the lowest total cost of ownership for the 100-passenger aircraft market, and offers a thrust range of 18,000 to 24,000 pounds. Pratt & Whitney says the engine offers customers longer time on-wing and reliability in the demanding, high-cycle operating environment of single-aisle aircraft. The PW6000 also meets or exceeds all current and future worldwide environmental regulations.

PW6000 launch customer LAN Airlines has ordered 44 engines with the potential for up to 78 total engines if all options are exercised. Pratt & Whitney is actively engaged in discussions with several other customers who are currently evaluating the PW6000-powered A318 aircraft and A318 Elite business jets.

The PW6000 is produced in partnership with MTU of Germany and MHI of Japan. MTU produces the PW6000's high pressure compressor and low pressure turbine, and MHI provides the engine's diffuser module.

Pratt & Whitney has over 17,000 aircraft engines in service with hundreds of airlines throughout the world. Additionally, Pratt & Whitney is a leading partner in two joint venture companies that manufacture commercial aircraft engines: International Aero Engines, which makes the V2500 for the Airbus A320 family of aircraft, and the Engine Alliance, whose GP7200 engine is FAR 33 certified for the new Airbus A380.



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