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Russia’s Irkut Selects P&W Geared Turbofan for MC-21 Aircraft; Third Airframe Application for New Engine

Russia’s Irkut Corporation has selected the Pratt & Whitney geared turbofan PurePower PW1000G engine (earlier post) to power the Irkut MC-21 aircraft. The selection represents the third airframe application win for the PurePower engine, which provides customers a significant reduction in fuel burn and noise with lower environmental emissions and operating costs than today’s engines. Pratt & Whitney is a division of United Technologies Corp.

The Irkut MC-21 is a family of 150 to 210 passenger aircraft with first flight planned for 2014 and entry into service in 2016.

The MC-21 program will allow Pratt & Whitney an opportunity to extend its PW1000G engine models to the 30,000 pound thrust class. (The current range for the two announced applications is 14-17K and 17-23K.) In addition, Pratt & Whitney will contract with Irkut and with Russia’s United Engine-Building Corporation (UEC) on the PW1000G engine for the MC-21 application.

Cross-section of the PW1000G Geared Turbofan. Inset shows the gear system. Click to enlarge.

The PurePower PW1000G engine features an advanced gear system that allows the engine’s fan to operate at a slower, optimum speed while freeing the low-pressure compressor and turbine to operate at their optimized higher speed, increasing engine efficiency and delivering significantly lower fuel consumption, emissions and noise.

In addition, the engine incorporates advances in aerodynamics, lightweight materials and other major technology improvements in the high-pressure spool, low-pressure turbine, combustor, controls, engine health monitoring and more. The combination of the gear system and all-new advanced core delivers double-digit (approximately 12%) improvements in fuel efficiency and environmental emissions and a 50% reduction in noise as well as reduced maintenance costs.

With core testing scheduled to continue through January 2010 and full engine testing planned for summer 2010, the PurePower engine program supports the Irkut MC-21 development timeline.

Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation has selected the PurePower PW1000G engine as the exclusive power for the next-generation Mitsubishi Regional Jet (MRJ). The PurePower PW1000G engine has also been named as the sole propulsion system for the Bombardier CSeries mainline aircraft.



Good news for improved performance Jet engines.

Lets hope that the other Engine manufacturers will do as good and even better in the next 5 years.

Coupled with lighter airframes, improved aerodynamics and air traffic controls, the fuel consumption per passenger mile could be reduced by 25%+ and GHG by 50%+.

John Gillan

From what I've been able to gleen, as an armchair aviator, a turboPROP engine is more efficient than a turboFAN. The P&W PurePower geared turbofan seems to combine the "greenier" features of both. The downside,
according to the aviation bloggers, is the complexity
of the sun-and-planet gear train. Your's is the first illustration I've seen of the gearing. I'm betting that this design will be a big success. Too bad that no Russian designers are involved. They've always been the best at engineering big turboprop projects.

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