Pratt & Whitney will invest $65 million in a maintenance site near Columbus, Georgia where the company maintains and overhauls PW1000G geared turbofans (GTFs), the Connecticut-based manufacturer announces.
The investment, which comes as the company embarks on massive GTF production ramp up, will help P&W ensure it has infrastructure in place to meet increasing maintenance demand, P&W says in a media release.
Also, later this year the company expects construction will begin on an additional engine test facility at the site in Columbus, which is about 145km (90 miles) south of Atlanta, P&W says.
The company has orders for more than 7,100 GTFs, executives have said. P&W will manufacture about 200 of the engines this year, but the company forecasts production will hit 400 in 2017, 600 in 2018 and 1,200 annually by 2020, executives have said.
The Columbus maintenance site is also where P&W is modifying a number of in-service PW1100Gs to address a slow-engine-start issue, P&W’s aftermarket president Matthew Bromberg has told Flightglobal.
To correct the issue, which is caused by a bowing of the rotor after shutdown, workers in Columbus apply a coating to the rotor tips, Bromberg has said.