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US Air Force developing an in-house jet engine #Aviation #Prototyping @Hackaday @wrightpattafb

Hackaday highlights work done by the US Air Force at Wright-Patterson to rapidly develop an open  source jet engine. The Responsive Open Source Engine (ROSE) is designed to be cheap enough that it can be disposable, which has obvious military applications for the Air Force such as small jet-powered drones or even missiles.

The Air Force have complete ownership of the engine’s intellectual property. This allows them to license the design to manufacturers for actual production rather than buying an existing engine from a single manufacturer and paying whatever their asking price is. The Air Force will be able to shop ROSE around to potential venders and get the best price for fabrication. Depending on how complex the engine is to manufacture, even smaller firms could get in on the action. The hope is that this competition will serve to not only improve the design, but also to keep costs down.

The Air Force states:

“We have a lengthy history of providing technical oversight at a high level to various engine companies as they develop these engines for the U.S. Air Force. By teaching our people to do this themselves, we’re instilling in them a level of gravitas that will serve the Air Force well when we then apply that oversight to the traditional engine manufacturers.”

The team says ROSE is more than just a first-of-its-kind engine development project. It represents a shift in thinking about how to do business.

We’re not trying to compete with our commercial partners, we are leveraging an underutilized sector to meet Air Force needs.

See the Hackaday article here and the WPAFB article here.

Air Force Research Laboratory engineer Justin Reinhart completes final assembly of the Responsive Open Source Engine turbine in preparation for testing. ROSE is a rapid development effort executed within 13 months and is the first turbine engine designed, assembled, and tested exclusively within AFRL. (U.S. Air Force Photo/Tim Bergeron)


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