One of the problems with developing new aircraft engines is how to test them in airborne environments before the planes they are meant to propel even exist.
Pratt and Whitney has acquired a pair of Boeing 747SPs that have been retired from airline service and modified them to allow installation of prototype engines. Larger engines are mounted on one of the four standard wing positions on one aircraft while the second plane has been modified to accommodate smaller engines on a special stub wing hanging from the 747 hump. AviationWeek takes a look at how this was accomplished.
Inside Pratt's new flying testbed
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