Shape-memory alloys (SMA) that could be used for variable stator vanes in intermediate-temperature areas of an engine are the focus of a £1 million-plus ($2 million), three-year Anglo-Indian study.

Using shape-changing components would allow mechanical moving parts to be removed from an engine, which would reduce its weight.

The government-backed British Council's UK-India Education and Research Initiative is providing £204,000 in funding towards the joint research project, which is to be led by London-based Imperial College, engine manufacturer Rolls-Royce, the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay and Indian Institute of Science in Bangalore.

"The alloys would operate below 500ºC [932°F], but above 100ºC," says David Dye, project leader for the study at Imperial College's department of materials.

Rolls-Royce is providing up to £200,000 worth of equipment and consumables and Imperial College estimates its total contribution, including facilities, at around £700,000.

Source: Flight International