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Rolls-Royce hails "game changer" test of new efficient jet engine

18th May 2023 09:02

(Alliance News) - Rolls-Royce Holdings PLC on Thursday reported "successful" testing of a new fuel efficient aerospace engine, culminating "many years work" alongside the UK and European Union.

The jet engine maker said promising testing of its UltraFan technology is a "game changer".

"This is a historic moment for Rolls-Royce – it's the first time in 54 years the aero-engine manufacturer has tested a brand-new engine architecture and is proof of what can be achieved when industry and governments work together," Rolls-Royce said.

"Testing the demonstrator is the culmination of many years work, which has been supported by the UK government through the Aerospace Technology Institute, Innovate UK; the EU's Clean Sky programmes plus LuFo and the state of Brandenburg in Germany."

Rolls-Royce said UltraFan delivers a 10% efficiency improvement compared to its current Trent XWB, which is already the "most efficient large aero engine in service".

"In the nearer term, there are options to transfer technologies from the UltraFan development programme to current Trent engines, providing our customers with even greater availability, reliability and efficiency," Rolls-Royce added.

Chief Executive Tufan Erginbilgic said the technology will also be key in the journey to net-zero.

"The UltraFan demonstrator is a game changer – the technologies we are testing as part of this programme have the capability to improve the engines of today as well as the engines of tomorrow. That is why this announcement is so important – we are witnessing history in the making; a step-change in engine efficiency improvement. When combined with sustainable aviation fuels, more efficient gas turbine engines will be key to hitting the industry's target of net-zero flight by 2050. Today we are closer to achieving this ambition," Erginbilgic said.

Rolls-Royce shares were up 1.7% at 155.45 pence early Thursday in London.

By Eric Cunha, Alliance News news editor

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