Full engine tests confirms engine design and performance is a good fit for B-52 aircraft

Rolls-Royce has completed early engine tests with the F130, the engine which will be offered for the US Air Force B-52 Commercial Engine Replacement Programme.

Full-engine tests were completed recently at Rolls-Royce’s facilities in Indianapolis, US, which confirmed the engine design and performance was a fit for the B-52 aircraft. In addition to full-engine tests, Rolls-Royce has already compiled more than 50,000 hours of digital engineering time to further develop and refine the F130 for the B-52.

F130 engines used in US Air Force fleet

The F130 engine for the B-52 produces 17,000 pounds of thrust and is a variant of the proven and reliable Rolls-Royce BR725 commercial engine. The F130 series of engines already power aircraft in the US Air Force fleet, including the E-11A and C-37 aircraft, with more than 200,000 hours of combat flight operations.

Adam Riddle, Rolls-Royce, Executive Vice President, Business Development and Future Programmes, said: “The Rolls-Royce F130 engine for the B-52 is part of a proven and efficient family of engines with millions of operational hours. We are excited about our test results in Indianapolis as we continue to demonstrate that the F130 engine is the perfect fit for the B-52. The F130 is the affordable, modern option for this iconic US Air Force aircraft.”

Assembly line could create 150 new jobs

If the F130 engine is selected for the B-52 engine replacement programme, Rolls-Royce will establish an assembly line in Indianapolis at its advanced manufacturing facility and add more than 150 new jobs including positions in manufacturing, engineering and programme management.

Rolls-Royce maintains complete design, engineering, manufacturing and test operations, and conducts advanced technology research for the US Department of Defense, NASA and other customers. Rolls-Royce Indianapolis also encompasses skills and experience in rapid prototyping, directed energy, infrared suppression, hypersonics, controls, cyber security, digital engineering, Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality, in co-located facilities.

The F130 programme would provide a boost to an existing, widespread US supply chain, and the majority of the F130 parts would be produced in the United States.

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