Rolls-Royce has completed the construction of the first propeller and tested the first MT30 gas turbine for the UK Royal Navy’s new aircraft carriers, the Queen Elizabeth and the Prince of Wales.
The 33t Kamewa adjustable bolted propeller is manufactured from nickel aluminium bronze with a diameter of 7m. It has completed acceptance tests at the Rolls-Royce facility in Kristinehamn, Sweden.
The propeller features five blades, and two will be fitted on each of the aircraft carriers, mounted on a central hub.
Rolls-Royce is also supplying shaft lines, which will link each of the vessels’ two propellers to the power source.
The company has also successfully tested the first of four MT30s across a range of load conditions up to the maximum power output of 36MW at the Rolls-Royce Marine test facility in Bristol.
Rolls-Royce director of naval programmes Richard Dingley said the gas turbines would provide the power needed to turn the propellers and drive these huge vessels through the water at speeds of up to 25kt.
The MT30 is the most powerful gas turbine available. It will form part of an integrated electric propulsion system on the carriers, which includes the giant propellers and propeller shafts as well as rudders, thrust bearings and low-voltage electrical systems.