Rolls-Royce has developed a digital tool to adjust for weather-related effects on Trent XWB engine-monitoring data, aiming to prevent unnecessary maintenance.

The UK engine maker says air humidity can affect turbine gas temperature (TGT) readings, which are used along with other parameters to predict maintenance requirements.

This can make engines "appear to need maintenance earlier than is necessary", R-R says.

The new tool uses humidity data collected from international airports to adjust for the effect on TGT readings.

R-R says it can now "more accurately" plan cycles and on-wing time for Trent XWBs, and thus increase aircraft availability for operators.

The Trent XWB is the exclusive powerplant for the Airbus A350.

"We are already looking at ways to support other Trent fleets on a similar basis," R-R says.

The effort is part of the company's "IntelligentEngine" digital services initiative, launched at Singapore air show in February.

Meanwhile, the manufacturer has installed a new engine health management (EHM) system on its Pearl 15 powerplant that can measure "thousands of parameters more than previous versions" and is "uniquely" capable of responding to requests from operational centres on the ground, R-R says.

If an operational controller monitors a certain engine parameter, the EHM system can retrieve historical data of up to 200 flight hours relevant to that parameter.

"By getting that greater level of detail, instantly, our engineering teams can work out a solution much more quickly," says Axel Voege, head of digital operations at R-R's engine monitoring facility for business aircraft in Dahlewitz, Germany.

He adds that the EHM system can "reach parts we haven't reached before", including line-replaceable units.

R-R says it will "build on this level of EHM" for future engines across its entire civil powerplant range.

The Pearl 15 engine was unveiled at EBACE in Geneva at the end of May, and is set to power Bombardier's developmental Global 5500 and Global 6500 business jets.

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