Rolls-Royce begins advanced technology testing on HEETE compressor at US Air Force Research Labatory

Rolls-Royce advanced compressor rig demonstrates ultra-high pressure ratio goal at US Air Force research laboratory

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Rolls-Royce has completed testing on a new, advanced technology compressor focusing on reduced fuel consumption.

The Rolls-Royce Highly Energy Efficient Turbine Engine (HEETE) compressor successfully demonstrated its ultra-high pressure ratio performance goal and an ability to manage component temperatures at ultra-high ratio design conditions through advanced thermal management. During testing at the US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), the HEETE compressor achieved the highest pressure ratio ever demonstrated at AFRL's Compressor Research Facility.

Mark Wilson, Chief Operating Officer - LibertyWorks, said, “This successful ultra-high pressure ratio testing validates the Rolls-Royce compressor design. The advanced compressor technology can be applied to future transport, patrol and ISR applications, ranging from our successful AE family to larger engine applications. The advanced technology will help meet the future needs of the US military by increasing range and persistence, while reducing fuel consumption.”

“The Rolls-Royce HEETE program is one of several advanced technology programs under way at our LibertyWorks unit. LibertyWorks has successfully completed designs for all major US airframe companies, as well as NASA, and has demonstrated success through ADVENT and other advanced technology programs.”

Rolls-Royce is one of two companies selected for the HEETE advanced compressor technology program to design next-generation propulsion systems for the US Air Force. The development work is being carried out by the company's LibertyWorks research unit in Indianapolis, Indiana, US. In 2007, the US Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) awarded the program to Rolls-Royce in a contract that is valued at $25.3 million.

HEETE is a technology development program that pursues high temperature, high pressure ratio compressor technologies and their related thermal management features. While this initial HEETE testing was focused on an advanced compressor demonstration, the goal is to define the next generation engine architecture for subsonic missions, such as Transports, Tankers, ISR (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance) and Subsonic Strike Vehicles.

  1. Rolls-Royce is a world-leading provider of power systems and services for use on land, at sea and in the air, and has established a strong position in global markets - civil aerospace, defence aerospace, marine and energy.
  2. As a result of this strategy, Rolls-Royce has a broad customer base comprising more than 300 airlines, 4,000 corporate and utility aircraft and helicopter operators, 160 armed forces, more than 4,000 marine customers, including 70 navies, and energy customers in more than 80 countries.
  3. Underlying revenue was $19.5* billion in 2012, of which more than half came from the provision of services. The firm and announced order book stood at $96.2 billion at 31 December 2012, providing visibility of future levels of activity.
  4. Rolls-Royce employs over 45,000 people in offices, manufacturing and service facilities in over 50 countries. Over 14,000 of these employees are engineers.
  5. In 2012, Rolls-Royce invested $1.47 billion on research and development, two thirds of which had the objective of further improving the environmental performance of its products, in particular reducing emissions.
  6. Rolls-Royce supports a global network of 28 University Technology Centres, which connect the company's engineers with the forefront of scientific research.
  7. The Group has a strong commitment to apprentice and graduate recruitment and to further developing employee skills.

*Based on £1 = $1.60 exchange rate

For further information, please contact:

George McLaren
Rolls-Royce - Defense Communications
Tel:+1 317 366-9624 (US)

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