Key Points:

  • Rolls-Royce has completed successful testing of 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) across all its in-production civil aero engines, including the BR710 business jet engine.

  • The testing program, including a variety of engines, confirmed that 100% SAF does not affect engine performance.

  • Rolls-Royce's commitment to sustainability is demonstrated in its UltraFan engine and a joint venture with Virgin Atlantic for a transatlantic 100% SAF flight.

Rolls-Royce's Pioneering Steps in Sustainable Aviation

LONDON — Rolls-Royce has made a significant announcement, confirming the successful completion of compatibility tests using 100% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) on all its currently produced civil aero engines. The final test, involving a BR710 business jet engine, was carried out at the company's Canadian facility. This achievement underscores Rolls-Royce's commitment to advancing sustainable aviation technologies.

The extensive testing program encompassed a range of engines, such as the Trent 700, Trent 800, Trent 900, Trent 1000, Trent XWB-84, Trent XWB-97, Trent 7000, BR725, Pearl 700, Pearl 15, and Pearl 10X. These tests, which included both ground and flight assessments, verified that using 100% SAF has no detrimental effects on engine performance.

Industry-Wide Implications and Future Collaborations

Tufan Erginbilgic, CEO of Rolls-Royce plc, highlighted the importance of this development, stating, "Becoming the first jet engine manufacturer to publicly confirm all our in-production engines for long-haul aircraft and business jets are compatible with 100% SAF, is an important milestone for both Rolls-Royce and the wider aviation industry. It’s also further evidence of our commitment to becoming a net zero company by 2050 and supporting our customers to do the same." Simon Burr, Group Director of Engineering, Technology and Safety at Rolls-Royce, also emphasized the significance of this achievement, expressing hope that these successful tests will encourage investment in the production of 100% SAF.

UK Transport Secretary Mark Harper recognized the broader impact of Rolls-Royce's efforts, noting that British innovation and government backing are crucial in the global journey toward decarbonizing flight. He lauded Rolls-Royce and the UK as leaders in decarbonizing transport, contributing to the goal of achieving Jet Zero.

Rolls-Royce also confirmed that its UltraFan engine demonstrator, which operated earlier this year, is capable of running on 100% SAF. In a further demonstration of its commitment to sustainable aviation, Rolls-Royce will partner with Virgin Atlantic for Flight 100, the world's first transatlantic 100% SAF flight, using Trent 1000 engines on a Boeing 787 Dreamliner. This project involves a consortium that includes Boeing, the University of Sheffield, Imperial College London, and the Rocky Mountain Institute, and is sponsored by the UK Department for Transport.