This morning I interviewed Dennis Jarvi, head of military engine programs for Rolls-Royce. It was quite a newsy interview, as you'll see below. Here are 5 random data points from my notebook as I continue to write to report the news article.
1. The US Air Force is discussing changing the focus of the ADVENT engine program from the Next Generation Bomber to the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Jarvi said. Introducing the variable-cycle ADVENT engine around 2020 with coincide with a potential mid-life upgrade for the F-35 airframe, he said. The 25% more fuel-efficient ADVENT engine is in competition between General Electric and Rolls-Royce, which are also partners on the F-35's current F136 alternate engine. The Air Force Research Laboratory rejected Pratt & Whitney's bid for the ADVENT contract in 2007.
2. Rolls-Royce is considering an all-new core in the 8,000shp-10,000shp thrust class to introduce after 2012, Jarvi said. Upgrading the 6,000shp AE2100/1107C also is being considered, he said. The timing in 2012 would support the Joint Future Theather Lift (JFTL) requirement and others around the world. "We have some time to work on it," he said.
3. The Lockheed Martin C-130H fleet is almost ready for a major engine upgrade, Jarvi said. The T56 3.5 upgrade program would reduce fuel consumption by 7% to 12%, or boost power for takeoff or lift, he said. The US Navy is also dicussing the upgrade for the T56 2.0-series powering the E-2C Hawkeye and P-3C Orion fleets.
4. Rolls-Royce is anticipating more than 100 orders for the RQ-4N Broad Area Maritime Surveillance (BAMS) system, Jarvi said. The USN is buying from 48 to 68 aircraft, so the balance may come from foreign customers, including Australia and Japan, he said.
5. Rolls-Royce is eyeing a potential re-enginging need for the Boeing MH-47G delivered to US Special Operations Command, Jarvi said.