Air Transport World

Rolls seeking broader markets with its D4D heavyweight contender. (Rolls Royce Ltd. aircraft engine)

Rolls seeking broader markets with its D4D heavyweight contender Derby, England--Given the go-ahead by the Rolls-Royce board in the third quarter of 1985, Rolls' entrant in the current biggest big-engine stakes, the RB211-524D4D, made its first run on Jan. 19. Certification by both U.K. Civil Aviation Authority and U.S. Federal Aviation Administration is due in March 1988. Deliveries of flight engines to Boeing are scheduled to begin two months later and will be ready for service, with 58,000 lbs. of take-off thrust, by April 1989 on the Boeing 747-400s of Cathay Pacific and British Airways.

At presstime, Rolls was deeply engaged with McDonnell Douglas in discussions towards having the D4D--uprated to 60,000 lbs. take-off thrust--offered to the airlines as an option on the MD-11. "There is a lot of airline interest in it, and we are keen to see it developed," Rolls said.

Although never on the DC-10, Rolls had 40% of the tri-jet market through its RB211 on the Lockheed TriStar, and sees no reason why it should not continue to capture this share of the future market, as represented by the MD-11.

Rolls is also in negotiation with Boeing to have a 60,000-lb. D4D version accepted for the Boeing 767 as an extended-range operations aircraft, and has also been talking with Airbus Industrie about the D4D for the A300/A310/A330 series of aircraft, although the Airbus discussions are at a lower level of intensity.

For the Boeing 747-400 the D4D had been shown, in an audit carried out by Boeing, to be the most fuel-efficient among the three engine types on offer, Richard Turner, commercial director, civil engines, told ATW. …

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