The latest Boeing forecast predicts South Asian economies will grow 5.9% annually, air traffic 7.8% and aircraft fleet counts 7.4% through 2037. That means about 2,400 commercial aircraft will be delivered, a huge claim on airframe and engine support in the region, which includes Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan and, most prominently, India and Pakistan.
Pratt & Whitney has been busy both helping to support V2500 engines and getting ready for support of the geared turbofan, says Palash Roy Chowdhury, managing director for Pratt in India. “The V2500 MRO network continues to grow as we enter the peak demand for overhaul services over the next several years,” Chowdhury says. IAE supports V2500 overhauls with 16 shops globally, with several located in Asia.
Current V2500 MRO centers include Pratt & Whitney’s Turkish Engine Center, Christchurch Engine Center and Shanghai Engine Center, which began overhauling V2500s in 2017. “The MRO network also includes other non-Pratt & Whitney network shops to ensure world-class service for every customer, no matter their location,” Chowdhury stresses.
Next up will be the GTF, crucial to the success of Pratt and many of its customers. More than 350 GTF-powered A320neos have been ordered by Indian airlines. And nearly a hundred of these GTF-powered A320neos had been delivered to Indian airlines IndiGo and Go Air by the beginning of 2019.
This is still a small count of young engines, so Pratt does not yet have a GTF MRO shop in India. But its growing GTF overhaul network now spans three continents and includes shops operated by the industry’s leading MRO companies in places like Singapore and Japan.
In addition, Pratt established a training center at Hyderabad, India, in September, 2015. The third such Pratt training facility in the world, the center has been approved by both India’s Directorate General of Civil Aviation and EASA to train engineers and mechanics on V2500-A5s and PW1100G-JM GTFs.
Chowdhury says the Hyderabad center can provide 5,000 student days per year of training. It is well equipped with engines, specialized tooling and state-of-art audio and visual teaching aids, including Virtual Reality systems. Training for Pratt’s regional, business, general and helicopter engines is offered by Flight Safety International in Bangalore.