Rolls-Royce has opened its first US defence operations centre in Indianapolis, Indiana, to provide 24-hour technical support to US military customers.
The opening ceremony was presided over by R-R’s interim defence president Tom Bell and US Marine Corps Maj Gen Glenn Walters, commander of the 2rd Marine Aircraft Wing.
"This centre here is going to make us more efficient," Walters says.
Walters told a crowd of R-R employees present at the 9 October ceremony that the USMC depends upon airpower in Afghanistan. As such, aircraft must often be available to the service at a moment’s notice. Technical support from the company has been invaluable in keeping the USMC’s fleet of Bell Boeing MV-22 Osprey tiltrotors operating in the harsh conditions of Afghanistan, Walters says. The Osprey is powered by a pair of AE1107C turboprops.
R-R has invested more than $2 million into the new facility, which houses more than 50 technicians and engineering staff. Company field service representatives and military technicians can call into the centre to troubleshoot engine problems.
"Our military customers in the field need a fast, effective response they can rely on when issues arise," says Paul Craig, R-R’s president for defence services.
The company also builds and services engines for the Lockheed Martin C-130J, Boeing T-45 and Bell Helicopter OH-58 Kiowa Warrior.