Pratt & Whitney, a division of United Technologies Corp. officially inaugurated the Pratt & Whitney Puerto Rico Aguadilla Engineering Center on Monday.
The renovated $14 million facility, made possible through a collaboration with the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Co., spans 104,000 square feet and houses more than 800 Pratt & Whitney Puerto Rico employees with the capacity for 400 more, company executives said.
The facility is on track for LEED Silver certification with multiple features designed with sustainability in mind. It also has an open-concept floorplan to support communication and collaboration, they added.
Pratt & Whitney Puerto Rico Inc., formerly Infotech Aerospace Services Inc. (IAS), is an aerospace engineering center that designs, evaluates and supports Pratt & Whitney’s game-changing commercial and military gas turbine engines, including the Geared Turbofan engine.
Since entering into service in early 2016, the GTF engine has demonstrated its promised ability to reduce fuel burn by 16 percent, to reduce NOx emissions by 50 percent to the regulatory standard and to lower the noise footprint by 75 percent.
“We brought IAS into the Pratt & Whitney family because we recognized the tremendous potential the business offered us — in particular, the talented engineers and employees,” said Geoff Hunt, senior vice president of Engineering, Pratt & Whitney.
“I want to thank PRIDCO for their support in making this beautifully renovated facility possible. This is something we can all come together to celebrate, especially in light of the devastation of Hurricane María,” he said.
Since Hurricane María hit in September 2017, Pratt & Whitney employees around the world have been committed to relief efforts through a combination of financial contributions, donation events and volunteerism.
Local employees have helped more than 600 families in eight towns by distributing food and personal items and by volunteering to repair damaged homes.
Pratt & Whitney Puerto Rico is committed to continuing to support these local communities in the ongoing recovery efforts, executives said.
As part of its commitment to Puerto Rico and its people, Pratt & Whitney also presented a donation of $500,000 to the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez to fund an aerospace teaching laboratory designed to train the next generation of mechanical and electrical engineers in the propulsion design and development.
“This donation further strengthens our relationship with the University of Puerto Rico at Mayagüez,” said John Delametter, general manager, Pratt & Whitney Puerto Rico.
“Many of our best engineers come from this university, and this new laboratory will help future engineers develop the skills necessary for them to be successful in the aerospace industry in Puerto Rico and beyond,” he said.
Gov. Ricardo Rosselló and other government officials were on hand for the inauguration.