Rolls-Royce aims to introduce a major revision to the Trent 1000 for the Boeing 787 within five years that will "open clear daylight relative to the competition", said the company's civil aerospace president Mark King.

The engine maker, which has just unveiled a major upgrade to its Trent XWB family to power the revamped Airbus A350-1000 centring upon a new scaled-up core, will take a similar approach to enhancing the 787's Trent 1000, said King.

"This engine will be more than an 'EP' [enhanced performance] upgrade, it will be a significant improvement for the Trent 1000," King said. "We hope to do it for a 2015/2016 service-entry timeframe. To achieve that, we'll need to make some decisions in the next six months or so."

Rolls-Royce Trent 1000 engine
 © Max Kingsley-Jones/Flightglobal

King said that the intention is to read across technologies from the Trent XWB and Environmentally Friendly Engine demonstrator for the Trent 1000 upgrade. "The technologies we're running on the testbed between the XWB engine and the demonstrator gives us a real opportunity to upgrade the Trent 1000. We think we can do something that could open clear daylight relative to the competition on the Trent 1000."

King said that the exact changes to the Trent 1000 are still being discussed both internally and with Boeing. "Within this process we're looking at a whole bunch of things," said King. "We have a number of options, and we'll decide [on the changes] in discussion with Boeing."

He added that potential changes could include modifications to the turbine, such as an additional stage, and/or upgrades to the compressor.

"The intent with this engine is that we are capable of addressing the 787 derivatives that Boeing might decide to develop in the future," said King.

Source: Air Transport Intelligence news