What is the biggest challenge you have ever faced? Welllllll, Dick Guthrie, Engineering Manager of PRATT& WHITNEY CANADA got an interesting challenge dropped in his lap back in 1956. PWC’s then President, Ronald Riley, gave him the task of putting together a group to develop a plan for creating a turboprop engine that would replace piston engines. With only $100,000 Canadian money at his disposal, he grabbed the bull by the horns and started to put together his team. Recruiting engineers from the ranks of the National Research Council in Ottawa and ORENDA ENGINES in Ontario, Guthrie began an odyssey that would result in the creation of the PWC PT6, a fact for which TURBINE TRAINING CENTER, Inc. in Manhattan, Kansas, is most grateful.
“Guthrie and his staff had a real challenge ahead of them,” Dale Wolcott, President of TURBINE TRAINING CENTER, Inc. shared. “Fortunately, they were up to the task and developed a number of major innovations.”
These innovations include, but are not limited to:
- Keeping the Propeller Shaft, Power Turbine, and Compressor sections independent. (Free turbine concept)
- Creating an ignition system that works well in cold weather.
- Keep over-all length at a minimum (Accomplished by mounting the power turbines inside the combustion chamber.)
“What we have found,” Jason Wolcott, TURBINE TRAINING CENTER’s Vice President, offered, “is that the PT6 can generate a shaft horsepower range that spans from 600 to 1940 shp. And,” he added, “they have done so while creating an engine that is reliable and cost effective.”
With part of their specialization including Cessna 208 Training, TURBINE TRAINING CENTER understands the importance of what the PT6 has meant to aviation. As one of the top Turbo-Prop Training Centers in the country, and perhaps even the world, TURBINE TRAINING CENTER is not at all surprised that the P&WC PT 6 remains one of that company’s most popular engines, and that it will be around for a long, long time!
To learn more about this topic, go to:
- Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6 - Wikipedia
- P&WC: PT6 Engine 50th Anniversary
- P&WC: History
- PT6, PT6A, Pratt & Whitney Engine
- This Day in History, September 24, 1959: Pratt & Whitney
Published November 13, 2014