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Rolls-Royce tests composite fan systems at John C. Stennis Space Center

News International-French

3 Sep 2014

The Rolls-Royce composite carbon/titanium (CTi) fan system for the Advance and UltraFan engine designs has completed its most recent phase of testing at the company's outdoor jet engine test facility at the John C. Stennis Space Center in Mississippi.

The fan system undertook crosswind testing on a Trent 1000 ALPS (Advanced Low Pressure System technology) engine, ahead of flight testing on the Rolls-Royce 747 flying test bed based in Tucson, Arizona.

Mark Thomas, Rolls-Royce, Chief Engineer - Technology and Future Programmes, Civil Large Engines, said: "This is another step forward in our validation of the CTi fan system technology for the Advance and UltraFan engine architectures. Successful completion of testing during crosswind flight conditions has verified the new fan design performance and will enable the programme to move on to the next phase of demonstration, including flight testing."

The CTi fan system includes carbon/titanium fan blades and a composite casing that reduce weight by up to 1,500lb per aircraft, the equivalent of carrying seven more passengers at no cost.

The Advance engine design will offer at least 20 per cent less fuel burn and CO₂ emissions than the first generation of Trent engine and could be ready for entry into service from 2020.

UltraFan a geared design with a variable pitch fan system, is based on technology that could be ready for service from 2025 and will offer at least 25 per cent less fuel and CO₂ emissions against the same baseline.

Opened in 2007, and expanded in 2013 to include a second test stand, the Rolls-Royce Outdoor Jet Engine Testing Facility at Stennis is one of three Rolls-Royce test sites in the world. It conducts specialist development engine testing including noise, crosswind, thrust reverse, cyclic and endurance testing on all current Rolls-Royce large engine types and employs nearly 50 people at the facility.

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