Pratt & Whitney's JT8D engine, an icon of aviation history, celebrates 50 years of dependable service this month, making it one of the most successful gas turbine engines in history. Pratt & Whitney is a United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX) company.
"The JT8D engine gave true meaning to our 'dependable engines' pledge," said Andrew Tanner, vice president, Customer Service, Pratt & Whitney. "More than 14,750 JT8D engines have been built, accumulating more than half a billion hours of reliable service since 1964. In fact, in 1987, Pratt & Whitney delivered its 25,000th commercial jet engine – a JT8D-200."
The JT8D-Standard engine family covers a thrust range from 14,000 to 17,000 pounds. The newer JT8D-200 engine family offers 18,500 to 21,700 pounds of thrust and is the exclusive power for the popular MD-80 series aircraft. Although production of the JT8D engine ended in 2001, there are still approximately 1,800 JT8D engines flying today, proving the engine's reliability.
At one point, JT8D engine sales and service contributed about half of United Technologies' profits. Today, it continues to generate revenue through aftermarket services, repairs, spare parts sales and kits to make it quieter and cleaner burning.
The JT8D engine traces its roots to the late 1950s, when a Pratt & Whitney J52 turbojet powered an early type of cruise missile called Hound Dog. With the addition of a two-stage fan and two additional low turbine stages, the engine that started as a "throwaway" on a missile evolved into the JT8D engine series. Its first application was on the Boeing 727 trijet. It went on to power such aircraft as the Aerospatiale SE210 Caravelle, Boeing 737-100/-200, Douglas Corporation DC-9, McDonnell Douglas MD-80, Kawasaki C-1, Dassault-Mercure Breguet, and the Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS) E-8 aircraft.
Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, auxiliary and ground power units, and small turbojet propulsion products. United Technologies Corp., based in Hartford, Connecticut, is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the building and aerospace industries. To learn more about UTC, visit its website at www.utc.com, or follow the company on Twitter: @UTC.