As part of its range of activities to support customers experiencing disruption on Trent 1000 engines, Rolls-Royce has developed a redesigned intermediate pressure compressor blade which addresses durability issues on Package C engines.
This blade has now been certified by both the Federal Aviation Administration and the European Aviation Safety Agency and the relevant bulletins were provided to customers by both Rolls-Royce and Boeing in late December. The first engine to receive the blades is currently being serviced at the Rolls-Royce Engine Overhaul Services facility in Derby, UK.
Introduction of the new blade, which will take place on a phased basis as production ramps up, is expected to help alleviate the number of Aircraft on Ground (AOG) events relating to Trent 1000-powered aircraft, while also relieving operator maintenance burden and flight operational restrictions.
It also gives Rolls-Royce additional confidence that it will be successful in its introduction of a redesigned IPC blade for both Package B and Trent 1000 TEN engines.
Certification follows a fast-paced programme which began last June when the first revised compressor blades were installed on a test engine at a dedicated facility in Derby, UK, making use of the latest in computing capability and “fast make” competencies. The blades have also undergone testing on an engine on the Rolls-Royce Flying Test Bed aircraft in Tucson, Arizona, USA.
As testing proved the design, Rolls-Royce began making new sets of blades, ready for introduction, in anticipation of regulatory approval.
The introduction of the new Package C blade is part of a broader Rolls-Royce range of activities to reduce disruption to our customers, including expanded service capacity, reduced turnaround times, development of innovative inspection techniques, and accelerated new part introduction.
Package C forms the largest part of the Trent 1000 fleet, powering a total of 170 aircraft.