The almost-all-electric Boeing 787 is prompting a novel engine design from Rolls-Royce, after forcing it to reconsider the fundamentals of extracting shaft power. The huge generator loads of the 787--more than four times normal--would hurt the surge margin of Roll-Royce's Trent 1000 turbofan if the power were taken from the usual high-pressure spool. Pressed to rethink the basics, engineers had a eureka moment when they realized that tapping the intermediate-pressure spool instead would ...


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