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Rolls-Royce and Reaction Engines announce new strategic partnership

Rolls-Royce and Reaction Engines announce new strategic partnership
Photo courtesy of Reaction Engines

Rolls-Royce plc and Reaction Engines Ltd have announced a new strategic partnership agreement to develop high-speed aircraft propulsion systems and explore applications for Reaction Engines’ thermal management technology within civil and defence aerospace gas turbine engines and hybrid-electric systems.

“We have been working closely with Reaction Engines for the past two years, including exploring the potential of high-Mach systems for defence applications, and I am delighted that we are able to strengthen that relationship,” said Mark Thompson, director of Global Strategy & Business Development, Rolls-Royce. “This partnership follows our recent announcements with Boom Supersonic and Virgin Galactic.”

“Reaction Engines’ thermal management skills, added to our suite of existing technologies and capabilities, will further assist us as we explore opportunities in supersonic and hypersonic aviation,” Thompson said. “Building on our many decades of innovation, we will also explore the use of Reaction Engines’ technology within our aerospace gas turbines and its potential application in future hybrid-electric propulsion systems, as we look to make flying ever more efficient and sustainable.”

Additionally, Rolls-Royce is making a further investment in Reaction Engines as part of a wider funding round. The two companies have been working together since 2018, including on the first phase of a UK Ministry of Defence contract to undertake design studies, research, development, analysis and experimentation related to high-Mach advanced propulsion systems.

“This strategic partnership is about developing market ready applications for Reaction Engines’ technology in next generation engines and is a significant step forward for our technology commercialisation plans,” said Mark Thomas, chief executive of Reaction Engines. “Our proprietary heat exchanger technology delivers incredible heat transfer capabilities at extremely low weight and a compact size. We look forward to expanding our international collaboration with Rolls-Royce, a global leader in power systems, to bring to market a range of applications that will transform the performance and efficiency of aircraft engines, enable high speed – supersonic and hypersonic – flight and support the drive towards more sustainable aviation through innovative new technologies.”

About Reaction Engines Limited

Reaction Engines Limited is a privately held technology company that is unlocking the future of hypersonic flight, space access and is revolutionising thermal management. The company is based in Culham, Oxfordshire, UK and Denver, Colorado, U.S.A., and employs more than 200 staff across its sites.

Reaction Engines’ innovative technology has the backing of some of the most influential names in aerospace and finance. The company is supported by the UK Government, UK Space Agency and European Space Agency and its U.S. team is working with U.S. Government and industry partners. Together with leading institutional investors, the company has received investments from BAE Systems, Rolls-Royce and Boeing HorizonX.

Reaction Engines’ proprietary precooler technology is transforming possibilities in the world of heat management, delivering world-leading heat transfer capabilities at extremely low weight and at a compact size.

The precooler is a key element of Reaction Engines’ revolutionary SABRE™ – Synergetic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine, a new class of aerospace propulsion that has the potential to provide air-breathing thrust from standstill on the runway to speeds above five times the speed of sound in the atmosphere. SABRE, aimed at next generation space access vehicles, is highly scalable, allowing multiple applications and is unique in delivering the fuel efficiency of a jet engine with the power and high-speed capability of a rocket.

Individual components and technologies of SABRE have been successfully tested and demonstrated.

More information about Reaction Engines can be found at www.reactionengines.co.uk.

About Rolls-Royce Holdings plc

Rolls-Royce Power Systems is headquartered in Friedrichshafen in southern Germany and employs around 10,000 people. The product portfolio includes MTU-brand high-speed engines and propulsion systems for ships, power generation, heavy land, rail and defence vehicles and for the oil and gas industry as well as diesel and gas systems and battery containers for mission critical, standby and continuous power, combined generation of heat and power, and microgrids. Medium-speed engines from Bergen power ships and power generation applications.
Rolls-Royce has customers in more than 150 countries, comprising more than 400 airlines and leasing customers, 160 armed forces, 70 navies, and more than 5,000 power and nuclear customers.

For more information about Rolls-Royce Power Systems, go to https://www.rolls-royce.com/.