Rolls-Royce Picks Derby, UK, as the Production Hub for the Trent XWB
Airbus delivered the world’s first customer A350 XWB jetliner in December 2014, with the landmark A350-900 aircraft provided to Qatar Airways
Rolls-Royce announced December 18th that Derby, in central England, will be the production center for the Trent XWB, which the company says is the world's most efficient large commercial aircraft engine and the fastest-selling wide body engine ever, with more than 1,500 engines sold to 40 customers to date. It is the sole power plant available for the new Airbus A350 XWB.
Rolls-Royce has invested around £30 million (US$46 million) expanding its Derby Assembly & Test Facility and installing new equipment in order to meet customer demand for the engine. Over the next three to four years, Trent XWB production will grow to over 300 engines a year – the equivalent of one every working day – and will stay at that level for several years. The majority of these engines will be built in Derby. The engine is expected to be in service for many years, creating an annuity of aftermarket services that will generate revenues for decades to come.
Almost 10 years ago, Rolls-Royce made its commitment to Airbus that it would develop a new engine for its latest wide-body aircraft. Work on the engine began in 2006. Airbus delivered the first A350 XWB aircraft to launch customer Qatar Airways on December 22nd.
"The Trent XWB engine is fundamental to the future growth of Rolls-Royce,” said Tony Wood, Rolls-Royce, President – Aerospace. “It accounts for half of our civil aerospace order book, before the Airbus A350 XWB has even entered commercial service. That is a great vote of confidence in our abilities at Rolls-Royce."
Added Simon Burr, Rolls-Royce, Director - Trent XWB Programme: "The Trent XWB engine going into production is the exciting culmination of years of hard work by Rolls-Royce employees, partners and suppliers around the world. Many of the team who have been crucial to its development are based in Derby and it is great news for them, the local area and the wider UK economy that Rolls-Royce will build the bulk of the engines here."
Over 10,000 people worldwide, from academics, researchers and Rolls-Royce engineers to supply chain partners and other third parties have contributed to the Trent XWB programme over the years, to get it to a position where it is ready to power the first commercial flights of the Airbus A350 XWB.
The Trent XWB includes ground-breaking technology which has been developed in partnership with academics and researchers across the world through Rolls-Royce’s network of University Technology Centres (UTCs). For example seven UTCs in the UK were involved in the development of the swept fan blade. The Trent XWB is the result of work across 16 manufacturing plants and 11 engineering and testing facilities, as well as work with 12 engineering partners and 75 supply chain partners