In the late 1980s, Rolls-Royce adopted a policy of focussing its academic research with selected university partners. Since then, Rolls-Royce has established a global network of University Technology Centres (UTCs), with the first formal UTC collaborations being signed in 1990.
Initially UTCs were established in the UK, but in more recent years the network has been extended to the USA, Norway, Sweden, Italy, Germany and South Korea.
Additionally, Rolls-Royce has significant relationships with many other research centres around the world, including Japan, Singapore, China, Germany, the USA.
Each UTC addresses a key technology; and collectively they tackle a wide range of engineering disciplines – from combustion and aerodynamics to noise and manufacturing technology.
This consistent strategy of developing long-term relationships with selected universities has provided close contact with world-class academic institutions, and given access to a wealth of talent and creativity to help protect our capability into the future.
The core structures of these academic partnerships are funded by Rolls-Royce on a long-term strategic basis, as they keep Rolls-Royce directly connected to cutting edge academic research capability. They also provide access to skilled people and enable recruitment and retention of highly qualified and motivated staff.
Research projects are supported by direct company sponsorship, Research Councils (notably EPSRC in the UK) and international government agencies concerned with developing leading-edge science and technology.