CORRECTED: USAF selects General Electric and Rolls-Royce to continue ADVENT work

Washington DC
This story is sourced from Flight International
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[Correction: This version corrects a previous report wrongly stating the US Air Force eliminated Rolls-Royce from the programme.]

General Electric and Rolls-Royce will continue developing technology for a next-generation military engine to power fighters and bombers, the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) announced on 15 October.

AFRL officials announced the decision is based on "available funding constraints," but was not immediately available to elaborate on this statement.

Rolls-Royce's LibertyWorks division will continue developing and testing a technology demonstrator engine under Phase II of the adpative versatile engine technology (ADVENT) programme. Meanwhile, General Electric will also continue developing and testing a "technology demonstrator core", plus reduce risk levels on unspecified components.

"We have two unique technology approaches that will each bear fruit in the future," says Maj Gen Curt Bedke, commander of AFRL. "The potential capability benefits of ADVENT to the air force's next generation aircraft and the rigorous selection process brought out the best of both companies, making the decision especially challenging."

The ADVENT programme seeks to develop a new engine for both fighters and bombers. It would introduce combined cycle propulsion technology, which allows engines to function efficiently at both cruise and dash speeds.

GE-Rolls-Royce fighter engine team executives building the embattled F136 alternate engine have linked ADVENT to the Lockheed Martin F-35 programme. The combined cycle technology could be integrated into the F-35 propulsion system after 2020, whether the GE or Rolls design is selected to enter phase 2.