This article originally appeared in CT By the Numbers May 3, 2018.
Pratt & Whitney has been selected as the 2018 recipient of the Connecticut Medal of Technology in recognition of its accomplishments in creating the groundbreaking geared turbofan (GTF) technology with unprecedented reductions in fuel consumption and noise, representing an incredible technological achievement in mechanical engineering and aircraft propulsion.
It marks the first time in recent memory that the Connecticut Medal of Technology will be presented to a business; previous recipients have been individuals. David B. Carter, Senior Vice President of Engineering will accept the award on behalf of Pratt & Whitney at the 43rd Annual Meeting & Dinner of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering (CASE) on Thursday, May 24, 2018 at the Red Lion Hotel in Cromwell, CT.
Pratt & Whitney employs thousands of engineers and workers with headquarters, research, and development organizations and production facilities in Connecticut. United Technologies Corporation, parent company of Pratt & Whitney, spent more than $10 billion on research before launching the GTF engine.
With more than 8,000 engines sold to date, the GTF represents several hundred billion dollars of economic activity in Connecticut over the next few years. Numerous airline customers have chosen Pratt & Whitney’s PurePower® turbofan engines because of the superior architecture and performance, as well as economic and environmental benefits.
“At Pratt & Whitney, we are in a very competitive industry and our continued success depends on our people driving innovation into every part, process and service,” said Carter. “Our customers have depended on Pratt & Whitney innovators literally for generations, and with the GTF, they can continue to count on us for the next generation,” he added.
“From the smallest detail of our engine design to the last stage of our manufacturing line, they are continuously improving how our engines are designed, manufactured and serviced. In the GTF alone, we matured or invented at least 48 technologies to drive performance benefits and we have over 3,600 patents and patent applications filed globally to protect our investment in innovative GTF architecture,” Carter continued. “These technologies go beyond the gear and include advancements to the fan blade, engine core, materials, monitoring systems and a host of others.”
Pratt & Whitney has had a long-term commitment to and association with the State of Connecticut. “The State of Connecticut is proud to award the Connecticut Medal of Technology to Pratt & Whitney,” said Governor Dannel P. Malloy.
Malloy said that, “Connecticut is the proud home of some of the nation’s most talented aerospace and defense manufacturers and suppliers, and Pratt & Whitney is certainly among them. This company continues to conduct cutting-edge aerospace research, providing exciting new opportunities for top engineering and science graduates from our state’s colleges and universities. We applaud Pratt & Whitney for their ongoing innovations and continued commitment to the State of Connecticut.”
The Connecticut Medal of Technology is awarded to individuals, teams, and companies/non-profits or divisions of companies/nonprofits for their outstanding contributions to the economic, environmental, and social well-being of Connecticut and the nation through the promotion of technology, technological innovation, or the development of the technological workforce.
By highlighting the importance of technological innovation, the Connecticut Medal of Technology also seeks to inspire future generations to prepare for and pursue technical careers to keep Connecticut and the nation at the forefront of global technology and economic leadership.
The Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering was chartered by the General Assembly in 1976 to provide expert guidance on science and technology to the people and to the state of Connecticut, and to promote the application of science and technology to human welfare and economic wellbeing.
Modeled after the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, this award is bestowed by the State of Connecticut, with the assistance of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering, in alternate years with the Connecticut Medal of Science.
The Connecticut Medal of Science was presented last year to Professor Robert Schoelkopf, Sterling Professor of Applied Physics and Physics, and Director of the Yale Quantum Institute. Previous Connecticut Medal of Technology recipients include Cato T. Laurencin (2016) Professor at the University of Connecticut and CEO, Connecticut Institute for Clinical and Translational Science, and Frederick J. Leonberger (2014), Principal of Ovation Advisors, LLC and Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer (ret.), JDS Uniphase Corporation.