Rolls-Royce delivers ADVENT technology milestone

Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Rolls-Royce has achieved a significant milestone in the Adaptive Versatile Engine Technology (ADVENT) research program, delivering the adaptive fan system rig on schedule to the U.S. Air force Compressor Research Facility (CRF). Rig testing will commence and will validate the performance of a key component of the LibertyWorks® ADVENT engine.

Testing will be conducted over several months and will focus on variable cycle engine performance, a critical component in achieving high-thrust capability for take-off and maneuvering, while reducing fuel consumption for long range and loiter operations.

Phil Burkholder, Chief Operating Officer for LibertyWorks®, said: “The LibertyWorks technologies being created for the ADVENT program represent a revolution in gas turbine engines, improving existing performance capabilities while delivering the benefits required by our customers: lower fuel burn and greater range. Achieving this critical milestone is an important step toward demonstrating the benefits of adaptive propulsion in future aircraft.”

The ADVENT technology demonstrator program, undertaken by Rolls-Royce North American Technologies, Inc. (LibertyWorks), is funded by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL). ADVENT is part of Versatile Affordable Advanced Turbine Engines (VAATE), an initiative sponsored by industry and Government partners to advance state of the art turbine engine technology for military and commercial aviation.

  1. LibertyWorks, known officially as Rolls-Royce North American Technologies, Inc., has a long history of service to the U.S. military. Based in Indianapolis, Indiana, U.S., LibertyWorks - previously known as Allison Advanced Development Co. (AADC) - has contributed technology to the F-35 Lightning II LiftFan and F136 engine; IHPTET (Integrated High Performance Turbine Engine Technology) program; and the RATTLRS supersonic missile.
  2. In August 2007, Rolls-Royce was awarded a $296 million contract by the AFRL for work to develop ADVENT technologies that focus on an adaptive engine architecture to provide a 25 per cent improvement in average fuel consumption and reduced temperature cooling air for thermal management. In late 2009, the U.S. Air Force is scheduled to select a single contractor for Phase 2 of this program that will cover final design, component testing and full engine manufacture. This will culminate in engine demonstrator testing scheduled for 2012.
  3. In September 2007, Rolls-Royce was awarded a $19.6 million contract by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory for work that will be carried out on HEETE. The HEETE technology program is a key element within the U.S. Air Force's Versatile Affordable Advanced Turbine Engines (VAATE) program that aims to provide game-changing propulsion system capabilities with superior fuel efficiency.
  4. Rolls-Royce, a world-leading provider of power systems and services for use on land, at sea and in the air, has established a strong position in global markets - civil aerospace, defense aerospace, marine and energy.
  5. Rolls-Royce has a broad customer base comprising 600 airlines, 4,000 corporate and utility aircraft and helicopter operators, 160 armed forces, more than 2,000 marine customers including 70 navies, and energy customers in 120 countries.
  6. In 2008, Rolls-Royce and its partners invested £885 million on research and development, two thirds of which had the objective of further improving the environmental aspects of its products, in particular the reduction of noise and emissions.
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