MIAMI – Mitsubishi Aircraft Corporation announced today the completion of the company’s Flight Test Aircraft 1 (FTA1)’s maiden flight with its first Pratt & Whitney GTF PW1200G engine assembled in Japan.

The FTA1 flight took place at the company’s Flight Test Center in Moses Lake, WA, US, on Friday, February 14, marking an important milestone for Japanese Mitsubishi Aircraft and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries Aero Engines, Ltd. (MHIAEL).

The Mitsubishi Aircraft flight test team validated the basic functions of the engine in normal flight while the overall performance of both the engine and the aircraft was confirmed at later flights.

Thanks to the successful completion of its maiden flight, the first Pratt & Whitney GTF PW1200G engine assembled in Japan has been cleared and is scheduled to join the flight test fleet in the coming weeks.

The GTF engine. Courtesy: Pratt & Whitney

An important milestone for the Japanese aviation industry

Mizutani Hisakazu, President of Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp., said, “this is the first flight with an engine completed in Japan, and represents an important milestone for Mitsubishi Aircraft, our SpaceJet family of aircraft, and the further development of the aerospace cluster in Japan.”

Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp appointed Hisakazu Mizutani as its new president at the beginning of 2017, along with Yuichi Shinohara as the new chief executive of the airframer.

Before being appointed as president of the corporation, Mizutani was the president and CEO of Integrated Defense & Space Systems at MHIAEL.

Today, Mizutani underscores that his corporation’s vision is to “cement the foundation for the commercial aviation industry in Japan.” Today’s announcement is a testament to that vision.

The GTF engine’s revolutionary geared fan technology. Courtesy: Pratt & Whitney

Comments from MHIAEL CEO

On his part, Katsuyuki Shimauchi, President and CEO of MHIAEL, noted, “We are very pleased that the first engine we completed has made its first flight.”

“In addition to manufacturing complete aircraft like Mitsubishi Aircraft, the ability to assemble aircraft engines in Japan is very important for the growth of the domestic aircraft industry, as well as the development of a reliable supply chain, needed to support future aircraft,” said the CEO.

For Pratt & Whitney, Bryan Rivard, PW1200G program director at the company, congratulated the team on this milestone, stating, “we are proud to see the revolutionary GTF technology taking flight after being assembled in Japan.”

Courtesy: Pratt & Whitney’s GTF official website.

About Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp, Pratt & Whitney

Mitsubishi Aircraft Corp is a Japanese company dedicated to the development, production, sales, and support of the Mitsubishi SpaceJet passenger airliners, and works in unison with parent company MHIAEL, the latter responsible for all manufacturing.

Pratt & Whitney is an American aerospace manufacturer with global service operations based in East Hartford, Connecticut. It is a subsidiary of United Technologies.

Featured image: The GTF engine. Courtesy: Pratt & Whitney