Rolls-Royce Tests All-New UltraFan Technology Demonstrator

  • Bureau
  • 12:27 PM, May 19, 2023
  • 1839
Rolls-Royce Tests All-New UltraFan Technology Demonstrator
UltraFan Technology Demonstrator

Rolls-Royce completed the first tests of its UltraFan technology demonstrator at its facility in Derby, UK.

The first tests were conducted using 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).

It is the first time in 54 years the aero-engine manufacturer has tested a brand-new engine architecture.

Confirming the capability of the suite of technologies incorporated in the demonstrator is a big step towards improving the efficiency of current and future aero-engines. UltraFan delivers a 10% efficiency improvement over the Trent XWB, which is already the world’s 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.

In the longer term, UltraFan’s scalable technology from ~25,000-110,000lb thrust offers the potential to power new narrowbody and widebody aircraft anticipated in the 2030s.

The tests took place in the world’s largest and smartest indoor aero-engine testing facility – Testbed 80. The 100% SAF, derived primarily from waste-based sustainable feedstocks such as used cooking oils, was provided by Air bp.

Testing the demonstrator is the culmination of many years work, which has been supported by the UK Government through the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI), Innovate UK; the EU’s Clean Sky programmes plus LuFo and the State of Brandenburg in Germany.

Key engineering features of the demonstrator include:

·        Advance3 core architecture, combined with ALECSys lean burn combustion system, to deliver maximum fuel burn efficiency and low emissions

·       Carbon titanium fan blades and a composite casing

·       A geared design that delivers efficient power for the high-thrust, high bypass ratio engines of the future. The power gearbox has run at 64MW, an aerospace record.

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