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Details of Grant 

EPSRC Reference: EP/R004951/1
Title: Cornerstone: Mechanical Engineering Science to Enable Aero Propulsion Futures
Principal Investigator: Garvey, Professor S
Other Investigators:
Vahdati, Dr M Hills, Professor D Simmons, Dr K
Schwingshackl, Dr C Morvan, Dr H Hyde, Dr CJ
Shipway, Professor PH Sun, Professor W Nowell, Professor D
Petrinic, Professor N Jefferson-Loveday, Dr R J Hoffmann, Professor N
Bennett, Dr C J
Researcher Co-Investigators:
Project Partners:
Rolls-Royce Plc
Department: Faculty of Engineering
Organisation: University of Nottingham
Scheme: Standard Research
Starts: 01 November 2017 Ends: 31 October 2022 Value (£): 6,143,615
EPSRC Research Topic Classifications:
Electric Motor & Drive Systems Eng. Dynamics & Tribology
Heat & Mass Transfer Materials testing & eng.
EPSRC Industrial Sector Classifications:
Manufacturing Aerospace, Defence and Marine
Related Grants:
Panel History:
Panel DatePanel NameOutcome
24 May 2017 Prosperity Partnerships Interviews Announced
Summary on Grant Application Form
This partnership between the University of Nottingham, Rolls-Royce, Imperial College London and the University of Oxford will undertake research in order to advance six key areas of mechanical engineering science which will enable Rolls-Royce in particular (and the UK more generally) to remain at the forefront of aircraft propulsion throughout the transition to all-electric flight.

Across all modes of transport, the twin challenges of climate change and decreasing fossil fuel reserves has resulted in a concerted effort to find alternatives to traditional internal combustion engine technology. In transport sectors such as rail and automotive these challenges are increasingly being addressed through the introduction of new electric vehicle technologies which is revolutionising the market through new technologies, new market entries and new business models. Several estimates indicate that within 15 years the majority of new cars will be either all-electric or electric-hybrids with range extenders. The aerospace sector faces much greater challenges in moving towards low carbon propulsion, due in large part to the greater distances that must be covered between refuelling opportunities and the fact that battery technology has not yet developed significantly enough to address the challenges of long range travel. There is however a clear recognition across the aerospace industry that a transition to all-electric flight is both desirable and essential to the future of human mobility.

Rolls-Royce recently announced their commitment to a long-term future business model underpinned by hybrid-electric and all-electric flight and this partnership will undertake some of the critical, underpinning research which will enable this step-change. In order to meet the roadmaps set out by the Aerospace Growth Partnership and the Advisory Council for Aviation Research and Innovation in Europe dramatic progress must be made in a number of technology areas in order to achieve a transition to all-electric flight.

CornerStone will advance six areas of mechanical engineering science:

1. High power-density contacts

2. Impact and Intelligent Failure Management

3. Advanced Static & Dynamic Load Management

4. Exploiting Aero-structural Interactions

5. Innovations in Thermal Management

6. Electro-Mechanical Interactions

The underpinning scientific developments and their integration into aerospace engine applications will equip Rolls-Royce to lead the global aerospace industry in the journey up to and including all-electric flight. Cornerstone will enable Rolls-Royce and subsequently other UK machine manufacturers to achieve a step-change increase in the value of their products and to shift the proportion of added-value away from pure manufacturing towards intelligent design.

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Further Information:  
Organisation Website: http://www.nottingham.ac.uk