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Rolls-Royce completes successful initial test of YJ102R engine

Monday, 12 January 2009

Rolls-Royce today announced it has successfully completed an initial test of its advanced, high-specific thrust YJ102R engine at the Indianapolis, Indiana facility. This test is the first of a series to be performed by LibertyWorks®, the company’s research unit, and is designed to validate critical performance criteria under its High Speed Turbine Engine Demonstration (HiSTED) contract with the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL).

Phil Burkholder, Chief Operating Officer for LibertyWorks, said: “Partnering with the Department of Defense to create this new capability is an exciting opportunity for LibertyWorks. The unique, power dense design of this engine has the potential to take high-Mach propulsion to the next level. Validating the progress achieved to date is a significant milestone and critical for the HiSTED program.”

HiSTED is a joint DARPA/Air Force initiative to design, fabricate and ground test a high Mach expendable turbine engine. The engine is also expected to power Lockheed Martin’s Revolutionary Approach to Time-critical Long Range Strike (RATTLRS) vehicle. The RATTLRS program is a supersonic, science and technology missile flight demonstrator effort sponsored by the Office of Naval Research.

Additional engine testing is scheduled to demonstrate its ability to achieve transonic acceleration and Mach 3+ cruise speed. The success of these tests will lead to a first flight demonstration of the RATTLRS vehicle.

The HiSTED engine is a high-temperature, moderate-pressure-ratio, single-spool, dry (non-afterburning) turbojet. It incorporates Lamilloy® technology, designed by Rolls-Royce to enable engines to run at higher temperatures, allowing for greater fuel economy.

  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 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.
  3. In August 2007, Rolls-Royce was awarded a $296 million contract by the U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory for work that will be carried out on ADVENT (Adaptive Versatile Engine Technology), a technology demonstrator program for future U.S. Military aerospace platforms. ADVENT work will focus on the development of variable cycle features that will enable a high-thrust capability and a separate loiter operation with reduced fuel consumption.
  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. Rolls-Royce is a technology leader, employing 39,000 people in offices, manufacturing and service facilities in 50 countries. Forty percent of its employees are based outside the UK - including 8,000 in North America.
  6. Rolls-Royce is working hard to improve the environmental impact of its products. Each year, in collaboration with its partners, it invests over £800 million on research and development, two thirds of which has the objective of reducing the environmental impact of its products. The primary technology investment area is aimed at reducing noise and emissions.
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