Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne’s Scramjet Engine Installed in Second X-51A Flight Test Vehicle

August 10, 2009

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla., Aug. 10 /PRNewswire/ — Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne’s scramjet engine SJY61-2 has been installed in the second X-51A flight test vehicle at Boeing Phantom Works in Palmdale, Calif. This is the second of four engines that will be used in flight testing of the X-51A scheduled to begin later this year. The X-51A is expected to exceed Mach 6 and set the foundation for several hypersonic applications. Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne is a unit of United Technologies Corp. (NYSE: UTX).

The X-51A SED-WR program is a collaborative effort of the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), The Boeing Company and Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne. The X-51A flight tests are intended to demonstrate extended-duration, hydrocarbon-fueled hypersonic flight. Potential applications for this technology include access-to-space, reconnaissance-strike and global reach.

“We look forward to final assembly of the second flight test vehicle and the continuing progress toward a successful flight test program that will show that hypersonic flight is practical,” stated George Thum, X-51A program manager, Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne.

Following final assembly and evaluation, X-51A Flight Test Vehicle 2 will be moved to Edwards Air Force Base, Mojave, Calif., where flight testing will take place.

During flight demonstrations, the X-51A will be dropped from a B-52, and a solid rocket ATACMS booster will accelerate the X-51A to approximately Mach 4.5 where the scramjet engine will take-over and power the vehicle to a flight speed of Mach 6 or more. The flight is predicted to occur over several minutes. There are four test flights planned for the X-51A demonstration program.

Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne, Inc., a part of Pratt & Whitney, is a preferred provider of high-value propulsion, power, energy and innovative system solutions used in a wide variety of government and commercial applications, including the main engines for the space shuttle, Atlas and Delta launch vehicles, missile defense systems and advanced hypersonic engines.

Pratt & Whitney is a world leader in the design, manufacture and service of aircraft engines, space propulsion systems and industrial gas turbines. United Technologies, based in Hartford, Conn., is a diversified company providing high technology products and services to the global aerospace and commercial building industries.

SOURCE Pratt & Whitney Rocketdyne

Source: newswire

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