Rolls-Royce has worked with the Advanced Forming Research Centre (AFRC) to improve the manufacturing method for compressor aerofoils, by extending the life of dies used in the hot forging process.
A multi-disciplinary team of Rolls-Royce and AFRC engineers has developed a fundamental understanding of the dominant die life failure modes using advanced metallurgical analysis, finite element analysis, thermal measurement and metrology. The work has led to the development of a physics based die life prediction model and guided improvement activities at a Rolls-Royce compressor blade manufacturing plant.
The improvements resulted in a doubling of die life which has reduced production costs and increased production capacity. The new approach and capabilities have been transferred and implemented at the Rolls-Royce Inchinnan Compressor Facility in Glasgow.