£ 30.00

The History Of The Rolls-Royce RB211 Turbofan Engine

Second Hand Condition – Very Good

Author – Philip Ruffles

Publisher – Rolls-Royce Heritage Trust

Format – Softback

Published – 2014

Pages – 328

ISBN – 978 1 872922 48 5

1 in stock

Category: Product ID: 18089


It is unlikely that the story of the RB211 will ever be told as comprehensively or as compellingly as this definitive history by former Rolls-Royce Director of Engineering, Phillip Ruffles. The depth of research is immense, and the story is laid out in a logical and easily read style.

Post-war, Britain initially led the field in civil jet aircraft with the de Havilland Comet airliner, but very quickly the American airframe manufacturers read the marketplace requirements and delivered airliners such as the Boeing 707 and Douglas DC-8 which carried many more passengers than the Comet. Although Rolls-Royce was able to offer engines like the Conway for them, it was difficult to make much of an impression on the American market, with a preference for home-grown product prevailing there. During the 1960s, however, an opportunity arose to develop an engine for the Lockheed L1011 Tristar. It was to be the most ambitious undertaking to date – the RB211. It was not to be without its difficulties, though.

The development of the RB211 is fascinating and many well-known and lesser-known events are described in detail and in context to clarify the turmoil that accompanied the project, including the infamous day when the receiver was called in to take control in February 1971. Yet for all the furore in the national press, the engineers at Rolls-Royce pressed on and it duly entered service little more than a year later. This at least secured Rolls-Royce’s future as Britain’s one remaining aero engine manufacturer and made a solid foundation upon which the company has continued to build. The Trent family of engines on today’s airliners all have RB211 in their DNA.

This book is a definitive historical record and an open and honest telling of the ups and downs of the successes and failures that are inevitable when such a step change in technology is introduced. The major personalities are acknowledged and their contribution and influence is given proper explanation. It should serve as a fundamental guide to engineers of the future. It is a remarkable story and thoroughly recommended for anyone with even the slightest interest in aero engines and engineering.

Additional information

Weight2.1 kg