Rolls-Royce has detailed its timelines for the Trent 7000, the sole powerplant for the newly launched Airbus A330neo.
On Monday at the Farnborough Airshow, Rolls-Royceunveiled the Trent 7000 as the seventh member of its Trent engine family. It builds on technology from the Trent 700, which Rolls-Royce said has around 56%-58% market share on the current generation of A330s, wrapping in new technologies from the Trent 1000-TEN and Trent XWB programs.
“Because this is based on experience of other members of the Trent family, this is relatively low-risk program for us and we’re confident of meeting Airbus’ timescales for entry into service at the end of 2017,” Rolls-Royce civil large engines VP-customer marketing Richard Goodhead told journalists during a briefing at the show.
The first build and test of the Trent 7000 is scheduled for 2015, followed by flight test—most likely using Rolls-Royce’s 747 testbed—in 2016. “We are aiming to certify in the first quarter of 2017, in time for flight test [on the A330neo] for the rest of that year,” Goodhead said.
Overall the engine will deliver a 10% gain in fuel efficiency and a 10dB reduction in cumulative noise, making the Trent 7000 twice as quiet as the Trent 700, while maintaining its predecessor’s thrust rating and hot and high performance.
The Trent 7000 will have twice the bypass ratio of the Trent 700, increasing the fan diameter from 97.5cm to 112cm, with an overall pressure ratio of 50:1 compared with 36:1 on the Trent 700. It has two additional low-pressure turbine stages and will be more stable at lower thrust.
However, the additional architecture and larger fan size will increase the Trent 7000’s drag and make each engine around 3,500 lb. heavier. “There is additional weight. Unfortunately, we don’t get something for nothing,” Goodhead said. The engine still delivers a 10% specific fuel consumption benefit after accounting for these penalties.
Earlier this year, Rolls-Royce announced plans to move to composite fan blades with a titanium-sheath leading edge on its new Advance engine, but this technology will not be ready for entry into service until 2020 and will therefore not feature on the Trent 7000. “This is a Trent; therefore, we will continue use hollow titanium fan blades,” Goodhead said. “Had it been three years’ later, it would have looked a lot more like the Advance.”
Safran’s Aircelle has been selected by Airbus to provide the nacelles for the A330neo. The larger fan means that the Trent 7000 will need to be “moved forward and up slightly” to maintain ground clearance, according to Goodhead.