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Rolls-Royce Begins Pearl 10X Engine Flight Tests

The company has begun flight testing for a new engine.

Rolls-Royce’s newest engine on a testbed aircraft (Photo: Rolls-Royce)

Rolls-Royce recently announced a significant milestone today with the commencement of flight testing for its Pearl 10X turbofan engine. This powerful engine — designed to propel Dassault Aviation’s ultra-long-range Falcon 10X business jet — is taking flight aboard a specially equipped Boeing 747-200 testbed in Tucson, Ariz.

The Pearl 10X represents the latest addition to Rolls-Royce’s successful Pearl engine family, following the Pearl 15 used in Bombardier’s Global 5500/6500 and the Pearl 700 powering the Gulfstream G700/G800. This 18,000-pound-thrust engine is set to undergo a rigorous flight test program designed to comprehensively evaluate its performance and handling capabilities.

Pushing The Limits

According to Rolls-Royce, the flight test program will encompass various aspects of engine performance and handling. Engineers will conduct checks at various speeds and altitudes, replicating real-world flight conditions experienced by business jets. They will also assess the engine’s ability to relight in flight, a crucial safety feature.

Additionally, the program will evaluate the nacelle’s anti-icing system during low-temperature scenarios to ensure optimal operation in all weather conditions. Fan vibration will be meticulously measured to guarantee smooth and efficient engine operation.

“All the tests completed to date confirm the reliability of the engine and show it will meet the performance requirements to power Dassault’s flagship, the Falcon 10X, “Philipp Zeller, Rolls-Royce’s Senior Vice President for Dassault Business Aviation, said.

Building On Ground Testing Success

The flight testing phase follows a successful ground testing program that accumulated over 2,300 test hours. These tests focused on both the Advance2 core demonstrator, a key component of the engine, and the complete Pearl 10X configuration in its entirety.

Ground testing yielded promising results, particularly regarding the engine’s environmental performance. The Pearl 10X features an ultra-low-emissions AL combustor, which Rolls-Royce claims is compatible with 100% sustainable aviation fuel. This innovation paves the way for cleaner air travel and aligns with the industry’s growing focus on sustainability.

Additionally, the new accessory gearbox on the Pearl 10X enables a higher level of additional power extraction, ensuring ample power for onboard systems during flight, while boasting a 5% improvement in efficiency and lower noise emissions compared to Rolls-Royce’s previous BR700-series business jet engines.

“The extensive ground testing program provided valuable data on the Pearl 10X’s performance and emissions profile,” Zeller said. “We are confident that the engine will deliver the exceptional performance, efficiency, and environmental compatibility that Dassault demands for its Falcon 10X.”

The initiation of this flight testing program signifies a major step forward for the Pearl 10X engine. This powerful and environmentally conscious engine is poised to propel the next generation of ultra-long-range business jets.

Tolga Karadeniz


  • Tolga Karadeniz

    Tolga is a dedicated aviation enthusiast with years of experience in the industry. From an early age, his fascination with aviation went beyond a mere passion for travel, evolving into a deliberate exploration of the complex mechanics and engineering behind aircraft. As a writer, he aims to share insights , providing readers with a view into the complex inner workings of the aviation industry.

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