Wednesday, July 6, 2011

EXCLUSIVE! Eco Wash for IAF engines?

Neelam Mathews
July 6, 2011
Time- 11:35pm IST

EXCLUSIVE!  Eco Wash for IAF engines?

Neelam Mathews
July 6, 2011

The Indian military may finally be waking up to the reality of keeping costs down and understanding the power of moving towards a green culture. Pratt & Whitney is in discussions with the Indian Air Force for its EcoPower engine wash for its fleet of aircraft, Aerospace Diary learns from a government official.

The Indian air force has around 1400 aircraft.

Should the IAF agree to go green, the project will be carried out in phases, starting with western engines of the Mirages first and then after developing manifolds, moving to the Russian engines. The equipment will be based at strategic units at numerous air bases in the country.

While the project may not be very lucrative in financial terms, it is bound to get P&W visibility and recognition of its line maintenance services.
The EcoPower(R) engine wash service uses a closed-loop system with pure, atomized water to wash aircraft engines, avoiding potential contaminant runoff. The system is more effective and much faster than traditional engine washing processes. 

Pratt & Whitney is to provide EcoPower engine wash services for the entire U.S. Air Force F117 fleet of 800 engines, as part of a C-17 F117 Engine Overhaul and Repair support contract from The Boeing Company, announced in October. As part of this support contract, Pratt & Whitney will also provide EcoPower engine wash services for other C-17 customers worldwide. 

India has ordered ten C-17s. The air force is said to be looking at six more of the airlifters. It is not clear if the line maintenance in India will include the eco wash.

Pratt & Whitney says its  patented EcoPower(R) washes reduce engine fuel burn by as much as 1.2 percent, eliminate three pounds of carbon dioxide emissions for every pound of fuel saved, and decrease engine exhaust gas temperature by as much as 15 degrees Celsius, improving performance and increasing the amount of time an engine can stay on wing.

"We are proud to help the U.S. Air Force and global C-17 customers to operate more effectively and more environmentally friendly," said Joanne Hastings , director, Line Maintenance Services, Pratt & Whitney. 

"To support this F117 Engine Overhaul and Repair support contract, we will conduct washes at locations in the U.S , Canada , UK , Europe , Middle East , and Australia . We are hoping to make EcoPower engine wash technology available for other USAF aircraft in the near future," adds Hastings.

Pratt & Whitney launched the EcoPower service business in late 2004 and to date has completed nearly 4,000 washes for more than 60 customers in 10 countries. This F117 engine maintenance contract managed by Boeing is for a one year period of performance contract extension with the option to extend for two additional years through 2011.

Earlier this year, Air India awarded a contract to P&W under a five-year agreement that made it the first airline to get the patented engine wash technology, which claims to reduce fuel burn by around 1.2%. Last month, budget IndiGo signed a long-term agreement with Pratt & Whitney to receive approximately 200 washes annually on its growing fleet of V2500-powered A320s. The washes will be performed at the Mumbai International Airport.

“We selected EcoPower engine wash because of the unmatched environmental and financial benefits it offers,” said Aditya Ghosh, IndiGo president. "This agreement also allows us to increase the operational efficiency of our growing fleet."

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