Latest News | 29 March 2022

Rolls-Royce signs green aviation fuel deal with BP for engine tests

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Rolls-Royce has signed a deal with Air BP that will reduce the carbon emissions of gas turbine engine tests carried out at three of its sites, including Derby.

The firm, which has its civil aerospace division at Sinfin, where it designs, develops and builds aero engines, said the deal with Air BP, which is the specialised aviation division of British BP, supports the engineering giant’s sustainability commitments.

It will ensure that all of the aviation fuel supplied for engine testing at Rolls-Royce facilities in Derby, Bristol, and Dahlewitz, in Germany, will be a 10% Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) blend.

The SAF is derived primarily from waste-based sustainable feedstocks, such as used cooking oils, and will be blended with traditional aviation jet fuel by Air BP.

Chris Cholerton, Rolls-Royce’s president of civil aerospace, said: “This agreement delivers on a commitment we made that the fuel for testing and development is a 10% Sustainable Aviation Fuel blend by 2023.

“We want to encourage the use of SAF throughout the aviation industry and this agreement is an example of the firm commitments fuel producers require to support their continued production investment.”

Deliveries of the greener fuel will begin this summer and the 10% neat SAF element will total around three million litres a year.

Air BP will also provide the fuel for the very first run of the Rolls-Royce UltraFan demonstrator engine, which will be carried out at the firm’s new state-of-the-art testbed at Derby entirely on 100% SAF later this year.

According to Rolls-Royce, the UltraFan will deliver new levels of aviation sustainability in terms of improved fuel burn efficiency and 100% SAF capability. The demonstrator will be the largest aero engine in the world.

Mr Cholerton said: “I will be proud and excited to see the UltraFan on our state-of-the-art testbed running for the first time on 100% SAF, creating a new chapter in engineering excellence and sustainable aviation history.”

Andreea Moyes, sustainability director at Air BP, said: “We are delighted to be supporting Rolls-Royce to achieve their sustainability goals.

“As BP transitions to an integrated energy company, we are leveraging our expertise in the sourcing of renewable feedstocks, SAF production, logistics and end customer supply.

“Our ambition is to be the decarbonisation partner in the aviation industry, and we are working at pace to promote SAF availability, accessibility and affordability to support global aviation in realising its low carbon ambitions.”

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