Pratt & Whitney President Dave Hess participated in a panel discussion during the U.S. Chamber of Commerce's 12th annual Aviation Summit held today in Washington, D.C. The wide-ranging panel, titled "Leaders in Manufacturing," addressed topics such as helping airlines reduce operating costs and managing a global supply chain.
At one point in the discussion, Hess noted that while today's jet engines are approximately 70 percent more fuel-efficient when compared to commercial jet engines of the early 1960s, the cost of fuel is the biggest factor affecting airline profitability today.
On the topic of the environment, Hess stressed that while RPMs (revenue passenger miles) are growing, the industry will reduce emissions because of next-generation engines such as the PurePower engine.
Joining Hess on the "Leaders in Manufacturing" panel were Guy Hachey, president and chief operating officer, Bombardier Aerospace; Clayton Jones, chairman and chief executive officer, Rockwell Collins; and Gary Spulak, president, Embraer Aircraft Holding, Inc. Bob Crandall, former chairman and chief executive officer, AMR Corporation and American Airlines, moderated the discussion.
The focus of this year's Aviation Summit was to examine many of the challenges impacting the efficiency and growth of airlines, including rising fuel prices, environmental regulations, and the implementation of the NextGen air traffic modernization program.