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Rolls-Royce starts work on its new test facility for aero engines which will be key to the testing of the company’s next generation UltraFan engine.

❱ ❱ The new Derby based test facility will be used for testing the Trent range and UltraFan engines

New Aero Engine Test Facility

£150m investment in UK aerospace facilities. Expected to be commissioned in 2020, the


, making it larger than a Premiership football pitch, and will be surrounded by two concrete walls which measure up to 1.7m thick. The decision to invest in Derby, the home of Rolls-


Royce’s civil aerospace division, was underpinned by a constructive dialogue with senior union representatives in the UK and will help to sustain more than 7,000 Rolls-Royce jobs across the East Midlands. Chris Cholerton, Rolls-Royce, President – Civil Aerospace, said: “We are proud to celebrate this important milestone, which comes at a pivotal moment for our civil aerospace business as we ramp up production to record levels and look forward to completing a hat-trick of new engine launches, with the Trent 7000 set to enter service later this year. This new facility will not only give us the capacity and flexibility to deliver our growth plans, but also sustains employment across the region.” Rolls-Royce currently employs around 22,300

new testbed will support Rolls-Royce’s ongoing industrial transformation and will provide important additional capacity as the civil aerospace business continues to ramp-up engine production and deliver record levels of orders. Capable of testing a range of contemporary engines, including the Trent XWB and the Trent 1000, the facility will also serve as a base for testing UltraFan, Rolls-Royce’s engine for the next generation of aircraft. The testbed, which will be the largest indoor

facility of its type in the world, will harness the latest digital technology to set conditions and obtain evidence from a wide variety of test activities, such as water ingestion and endurance testing. It will also benefit from the latest advancements in test equipment including new x-ray capabilities. The testbed itself will have an internal area of

ork has started at Rolls-Royce in Derby on the company’s new testbed facility, the plans for which were announced in June last year as part of a wider

people in the UK, across a range of skilled jobs, including more than 600 apprentices, and, through its supply chain, supports more than 40,000 jobs across the East Midlands region. In addition to the Trent XWB engine, which powers the Airbus A350 and is the world’s fastest selling widebody engine ever, Rolls-Royce assembles the Trent 700, Trent 900 and Trent 1000 engines in Derby, powering the Airbus A330, Airbus A380 and Boeing 787 Dreamliner respectively. Derby has also been home to the design and

development of a hat-trick of new engines: the Trent 1000 TEN which powers the Boeing 787 Dreamliner family and entered service in November 2017; the Trent XWB-97, which powers the Airbus A350-1000 and entered service in February; and the Trent 7000 which will power the Airbus A330neo when it enters service later this year. The new testbed supports the IntelligentEngine vision recently outlined by Rolls-Royce by bringing together the latest in digital and physical testing technology to ensure Rolls-Royce is best placed to deliver passengers more reliably and more efficiently than ever before. In addition to designing, testing and maintaining engines in the digital realm, the IntelligentEngine vision sets out a future where an engine will be increasingly connected, contextually aware and comprehending, starting from its time on the testbed. n

Aerospace Test & Validation 2018 /// 19

❱ ❱ The Rolls- Royce UltraFan engine for next generation airliners of the future will undergo testing at the new facility after its completion in 2020

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