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Will Raytheon Boost Pratt & Whitney Analytics?

Raytheon's merger with Pratt & Whitney's parent company UTC has led to thoughts about how its capabilities could be applied to engine data analysis.

The recently announced merger of United Technologies (UTC) and Raytheon has sowed mild confusion among some analysts.

The deal essentially bolts on Raytheon’s military-dominated business to UTC’s more commercially oriented aerostructures and engine production, and while this will be a useful supplement to Raytheon’s military sales, some have questioned why UTC is moving into uncharted waters so soon after its giant merger with Rockwell Collins.

The consolidated entity will be called Raytheon Technologies and will comprise four business units: Intelligence, Space & Airborne Systems; Integrated Defense & Missile Systems; Collins Aerospace and Pratt & Whitney.

In their merger statement, the two companies made little mention of how the deal would affect UTC’s extensive aftermarket activities, but did identify several areas of “joint advancement” in the commercial sphere: analytics and artificial intelligence; cyber protection for connected aircraft; and next-generation connected aerospace.

“By joining forces, we will have unsurpassed technology and expanded R&D capabilities that will allow us to invest through business cycles and address our customers' highest priorities,” said Greg Hayes, United Technologies chairman and chief executive officer.

Of interest here is how quickly and effectively Raytheon’s data capabilities--presently housed in its intelligence, information and services segment, which contributed about one-quarter of the company’s sales in 2018--could be applied to areas such as predictive maintenance for Pratt & Whitney engines.

Speaking to MRO Network last year, Pratt & Whitney noted the huge escalation in data being collected off its engine platforms, as well as the fact that much of it went unanalyzed, but was stored nonetheless.

“So six months or five years later, something new happens and you’d like to go back to the historical raw data to confirm your assumptions or analytics; the data is available,” said Karine Lavoie-Tremblay, Pratt & Whitney’s associate director, engine health monitoring, in February 2018.

With the addition of Raytheon, that “something new” may now have occurred.

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