The Boeing 787 Dreamliner’s claim to represent a more fuel-efficient future of flying is rooted in its state-of-the-art, high efficiency, low emission Rolls-Royce engines, developed with key input from the Oxford Turbine Research Facility (OTRF).

Through research led by the Department of Engineering Science, this unique facility generated research insights which have shaped the design of the Trent 1000 turbine, enabling the engine to deliver significant fuel savings and leading to an estimated reduction in emissions of over 6 million kg in CO2.

The Dreamliner, which entered commercial service in 2011, resulted in a reduction in the carbon footprint of flying, lower airline running costs, and a boost for Rolls-Royce engine sales: impacts in which our research has played an important part.

Related Publications

  • Chana, K.S., Cardwell, D.N., Jones, T.V. ‘A review of the Oxford Turbine Research Facility,’(2013), ASME Turbo Expo San Antonio GT2013-94105.
  • Beard, P.F. and Povey, T. ‘Direct Shaft Torque Measurements in a Transient Turbine Facility’ (2011). Measurement Science and Technology, 22: 035107 (10pp). DOI link for publication (opens in a new tab)
  • Beard, P.F., Povey, T. and Chana, K.S. ‘Turbine Efficiency Measurement System for the QinetiQ Turbine Test Facility’ (2010). ASME Journal of Turbomachinery, 132(1): 011002 (13pp). DOI link for publication (opens in a new tab)
  • Qureshi, I., Beretta, A. and Povey, T. ‘Effect of Simulated Combustor Temperature Non-uniformity on HP Vane and Endwall Heat Transfer: An Experimental and Computational Investigation’ (2011). ASME Journal of Engineering for Gas Turbines and Power, 133(3): 031901 (13pp). DOI link for publication (opens in a new tab)
  • Qureshi, I. and Povey, T. ‘A Combustor-representative Swirl Simulator for a Transonic Turbine Research Facility’ (2011). Proceedings of the IMechE, Part G: Journal of Aerospace Engineering, 225(7), pp 737-748.  DOI link for publication (opens in a new tab)
  • Beard, P.F., Smith, A.D. and Povey, T. ‘Experimental and Computational Fluid Dynamics Investigation of the Efficiency of an Unshrouded Transonic High Pressure Turbine’ (2011). Proceedings of the IMechE, Part A: Journal of Power and Energy, 225(A8), pp 1166-1179. DOI link for publication (opens in a new tab)  This paper won the IMechE Harold Disney Prize 2011, awarded for the best paper on a power industries mechanical engineering subject published by the IMechE in the previous year.

Grants supporting the research

Dr Povey was Principal Investigator on all of these projects

  • EU FP7 (502924) TATEF 2 programme: 2004-2008, £445k (Oxford component).
  • Rolls-Royce (50015 22482): SEOTDF Generator Design, 2010-2013, £141k.
  • Technology Strategy Board (110022): SAMULET Cooled Turbine Build, 2010-2013, £400k.
  • Technology Strategy Board (110034): SILOET Turbomachinery, 2010-2013, £500k.
  • EU FP7 (265985) FACTOR project: 2011-2014, £330k (Oxford component).
  • EU FP7 (283216) LEMCOTEC project: 2012-2015, £588k (Oxford component).