The 50,000th PT6 turboprop engine has rolled off the production line, Pratt & Whitney announced yesterday. Announced in 1958, the first iteration of the PT6 began flight testing in May 1961 and entered service in 1964.
“From the first application more than 50 years ago, the now-iconic PT6 engine [has] more than 130 different applications today,” said Irene Makris, v-p of sales and marketing at Pratt & Whitney. “With each new model of engine developed and designed for a mission, platform, and customer in mind, our employees continue to build a more efficient, smarter engine with a shrinking environmental footprint.”
More than 25,000 PT6 engines are currently in service, and the total fleet has accumulated in excess of 410 million flight hours, according to Pratt & Whitney. The latest variant—the PT6 E-series—powers the Pilatus PC-12 NGX.
“This production milestone is unmatched in the industry. It offers us another opportunity to celebrate the engine’s ongoing success as we continue exploring new horizons for even more flying possibilities,” Makris said. “The achievement sits as the collective cornerstone of Pratt & Whitney in general aviation."