Pratt & Whitney develops Singapore research centre

Pratt & Whitney
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Pratt & Whitney is to establish a technology accelerator in Singapore in collaboration with the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB). Technologies developed in Singapore will be applied across Pratt & Whitney’s global maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) footprint.

The facility, serving as a centre of excellence for technology advancement, will help to accelerate the development and deployment of technology insertion projects across Pratt & Whitney’s four Singapore-based MRO facilities over the next five years.

The projects, expected to be worth at least S$31 million (or US$22 million), will focus on automation, advanced inspection, connected factory and digital twin, helping to enhance connectivity and intelligence across the company’s MRO operations.

The Singapore technology accelerator will be located at the Seletar Aerospace Park, within the heart of Singapore’s aerospace industry ecosystem. Expected to be ready for occupation in the fourth quarter of this year, it will add 16 new positions, which the company plans to fill with local, full-time employees.

Gilbert Sim, director, aftermarket global operations technology and CORE, Pratt & Whitney said: “We are proud to work together with the Singapore Economic Development Board to develop innovative solutions for Pratt & Whitney’s MRO operations. The technology accelerator signals just how relevant and important a role technology has played, and continues to play, in the aerospace industry.

“Pratt & Whitney has been innovating for nearly a century, and we are looking forward to this collaboration with the Singapore aerospace ecosystem towards Industry 4.0 transformation. The push for digitalisation is underway across our facilities in Singapore, and the technology accelerator will increase the speed and scalability of these technology projects.”

Kevin Kirkpatrick, vice president, aftermarket global operations, Pratt & Whitney added: “Our Asia-Pacific MRO facilities have done a great deal in the way of technology insertion, including developing the first-in-MRO application of 3D printing for aero-engine component details, pioneering robotics in the sector and launching an industrial simulation software pilot that has already resulted in optimised floor space and increased productivity.”

Pratt & Whitney is seeing significant demand in its commercial engine MRO businesses as utilisation increases and customers resume engine maintenance.

Lim Tse Yong, senior vice president, conglomerates, EDB said: “Pratt & Whitney’s investment is testament to Singapore’s position as a leading aerospace hub and strong ecosystem for innovation. We will continue to partner with the aerospace industry to enable the recovery in air travel and its long-term growth.”

An inspection cobot working on a Pratt & Whitney engine

An inspection cobot working on a Pratt & Whitney engine