Pratt & Whitney TF33 celebrates its 55th year

The now-antique TF33 turbofan engine just keeps going.

The TF33 and its commercial variant, the JT3D, celebrated its 55th anniversary in June 2015. The JT3D was the first turbofan engine designed and produced by Pratt & Whitney. When it was introduced, the engine had approximately 50 percent more take-off thrust, 25 percent more climbing power and 20 percent greater power at maximum cruise than previous engines.

First introduced on the B-52H Stratofortress, the TF33 continues to serve that fleet today and is also on E-3 Sentry AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control System), the E-8 Joint Stars and some special mission aircraft. In addition to the Air Force fleet, the TF33 powers NATO AWACs and KC-135s for Chile. Over the past six decades, it also has powered the C-135, C-141, EC-135, RB-57, E3A, C-135, KC-135, VC-137 and EC-18 ARIA.

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