Eurojet, a partnership between MTU of Germany, Italy's FiatAvio, Spain's ITP and the UK's Rolls-Royce, is responsible for the EJ200 turbofan which will power production Eurofighter 2000 aircraft.

The first EF2000 prototype to be fitted with EJ200 engines, designated DA3, was flown in early June from Alenia's Caselle flight-test centre in Italy. Initial EF2000 prototypes were flown with Turbo-Union RB199 engines.

Early indications are that the EJ200 is performing above expectations, and the engine's performance envelope for the first year of testing aboard DA3 has now been cleared. The engine had been run for more than 5,000h during ground tests before the DA3 first flight.

Development of the EJ200 has remained consistently close to schedule, despite delays with the EF2000 airframe and systems. MTU, however, experienced some problems with the engine's compressor design, and integration of the engine's full-authority digital engine control also proved to be troublesome.

Other potential applications for the EJ200 include the proposed upgraded Saab JAS39X Gripen fighter, and a derivative of the Lockheed Martin F-117, which may be offered to the Royal Air Force. R-R also studied the possibility of mating the EJ200 core with the fan of a Tay engine to develop a lift-fan-engine for the US Joint Advanced Strike Technology programme, but found that the power plant would be physically too large.

Source: Flight International