Rolls-Royce Liftsystem hits hat-trick of JSF STOVL milestones

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology

ISSN: 0002-2667

Article publication date: 1 August 2004



(2004), "Rolls-Royce Liftsystem hits hat-trick of JSF STOVL milestones", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 76 No. 4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Rolls-Royce Liftsystem hits hat-trick of JSF STOVL milestones

Rolls-Royce Liftsystem hits hat-trick of JSF STOVL milestones

Rolls-Royce reports that it has achieved three key milestones in the development of the LiftSystem technology that enables the F-35B Joint Strike Fighter (JSF) to achieve its Short Take-Off and Vertical Landing (STOVL) capability.

Rolls-Royce has successfully completed a test demonstrating the Propulsion System specification life requirement of 1500 engagements of the LiftFan clutch. The clutch enables transition from conventional to vertical flight by transmitting horse power (HP) from the main engine during an engagement. Demonstration of the required clutch life is particularly noteworthy and represents greater than a ten-fold increase in life since the successful JSF Concept Demonstration flights in 2001.

Recently, a Rolls-Royce LiftFan commenced the first in a sequence of STOVL tests to measure operational capability. The LiftFan, a 50 in., two-stage, counter-rotating fan driven from a conventional gas turbine, supplies the forward vertical lift for the JSF aircraft and testing is taking place at the new $20 m Rolls-Royce LiftFan Test Facility, which opened last month, in Indianapolis, Indiana, USA.

The hat-trick of achievements was completed with the assembly, successful functional test and shipment to Pratt and Whitney of the first 3 Bearing Swivel Module (3BSM), a swivelling jet pipe that is capable of redirecting the rear main engine thrust from the horizontal to the vertical in just 2.5 s. All three milestones form part of the F135 System Development and Demonstration (SDD) programme.

Related articles