Rolls-Royce has signed a landmark agreement with Australia’s Defence Materials Technology Centre (DMTC) during this year’s Australian International Airshow 2011.
The jointly-funded agreement, which will develop advanced component repair techniques for military engines, was signed by DMTC CEO Mark Hodge, and Rolls-Royce president-Customer Business, Nick Durham. “This agreement between Rolls-Royce and DMTC is significant in that it represents a strong partnership between an OEM, the Australian research sector and industry supply chain, which will support key through-life support and sustainment outcomes,” Hodge said.
Studies will focus on the investigation and development of new surface treatment methods, which will aim to save manufacturing time and cost while enhancing component reliability. RMIT University and the Defence Science and Technology Organisation (DSTO) are also partners in the program, which will specifically address the development of technologies that enable repair of numerous components in gas turbine engines, including engine blisks. Blisks – one piece bladed discs – reduce engine weight while maintaining high engine performance and are used in several of today’s most modern military engines. That includes the Rolls-Royce/General Electric F136 alternate engine for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
Minister for Defence Materiel, Jason Clare, said that Rolls-Royce and RMIT would “work together to develop new techniques that can be used to extend the life of Australia’s military aircraft in the future”. “This is an important agreement for the Australian Defence industry,” Clare said.
“It’s an opportunity to develop our skills and knowledge while increasing the capability of our defence industry.”