Wings Magazine

Pratt & Whitney launches new facility

Oct. 4, 2010, Mirable, Que. - Pratt & Whitney Canada (P&WC) joined Canadian and Quebec government officials in inaugurating the company's global flight test operations centre today.

October 4, 2010  By Carey Fredericks

This is the first phase of Pratt & Whitney Canada's state-of-the-art Mirabel Aerospace Centre at Montreal-Mirabel International Airport. P&WC is a United Technologies Corp. company (NYSE:UTX).

"Thanks to the passion and determination of the teams from P&WC and its partners, the world-class aerospace centre we announced two years ago is well on its way to becoming a reality," said P&WC President John Saabas. "This facility reinforces Pratt & Whitney Canada's position as an aerospace leader and continues to grow Quebec's and Canada's capabilities as a global aerospace hub. It will be one of the largest flight test operations centres for civil aircraft engines in North America."

The Mirabel Aerospace Centre will support flight testing for the complete range of Pratt & Whitney engines, including turboprops and turbofans up to 90,000 pounds of thrust. The centre houses two Boeing 747SP aircraft that have been transformed into flying test beds to simulate a complete range of flight conditions and collect record amounts of engine data.

"This flight test operations centre here at Mirabel is yet another example of our Industrial and Regional Benefits (IRB) Policy at work," said the Honourable Tony Clement, Minister of Industry for the Government of Canada. "This partnership with Pratt & Whitney Canada will help spur innovation and encourage long-term industrial development in Canada, while creating jobs and bringing lasting economic benefits to Canadian communities."


"This flight facility and the soon to open assembly and test facility will further establish Quebec as an international hub for aerospace innovation and excellence," said the Honourable Christian Paradis, federal Minister of Natural Resources and Minister Responsible for Montreal. "Our aerospace sector in Quebec has the talent and expertise that makes us world leaders in the business."

Phase II of the Mirabel Aerospace Centre, already underway and scheduled for completion in spring 2011, includes construction of a highly advanced assembly and test facility. At the new facility, P&WC will assemble and test the PurePower(R) PW1524G for the Bombardier CSeries and the PW800 engine family for the next generation of large business jets.

A 300,000-square-foot facility, the Mirabel Aerospace Centre represents a $360-million investment. Approximately 300 people will be employed at the facility by 2015.

"Aerospace is a key contributor to Quebec's economy, with more than 40,000 people ensuring its success," stated Clement Gignac, Minister of Economic Development, Innovation and Export Trade. "The strength of the aerospace industry lies in the actions of many world-class contractors and equipment manufacturers, such as Pratt & Whitney Canada. The government of Quebec is proud to contribute to the development of the company's new flight test operations centre. Not only does this project support Quebec's position as a leader in Canada, it also results in significant benefits for Quebec."

"We're pleased to welcome Pratt & Whitney Canada's new flight test operations centre to Mirabel," said Michelle Courchesne, Chair of the Conseil du tresor and Minister Responsible for the Laurentians Region. "The reestablishment of the Mirabel airport as an industrial area will certainly stimulate this dynamic region and contribute to the revitalization of the airport."

"We thank the governments of Canada and Quebec for recognizing the importance of the aerospace industry," added Saabas.

In line with P&WC's commitment to sustainable development, the Mirabel Aerospace Centre is designed to meet LEED Silver certification standards. It is equipped with a wall to absorb and store solar energy as well as an energy-efficient lighting system that maximizes the use of natural light. The engines assembled and tested in Mirabel will feature the most advanced green technologies available today, providing significant reductions in fuel burn, environmental emissions and engine noise.


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