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ILA 2024: Rolls-Royce Deutschland teams with ITP Aero to develop new engine for loyal wingmen

A subscale model of the Wingman Engine was showcased at ILA 2024 in Berlin. (Janes/Gareth Jennings)

Germany's Rolls-Royce Deutschland and Spain's ITP Aero have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to develop a new engine to power unmanned ‘loyal wingmen', it was announced at the ILA Berlin Air Show 2024.

Signed on 5 June, the MOU will see the two companies design, develop, manufacture, and support a Wingman Engine, which they bill as “a state-of-the-art, powerful solution for large remote carriers”.

With a subscale model of the engine displayed at the biennial ILA event, the joint announcement described the Wingman Engine as “a European solution capable of meeting development and product cost requirements for various large remote carrier designs”.

As noted in the announcement, the engine, which will be the first to be designed specifically for use by unmanned ‘loyal wingmen', builds on the Advance2 core demonstrator already used to power both military and commercial platforms.

A Rolls-Royce Deutschland official told Janes at ILA 2024 that the underlying goal of Wingman Engine is to drive down the cost of a powerplant when compared with that of a manned combat aircraft.

For more information on ‘loyal wingmen', please see Disposable heroes: Rise of the attritable loyal wingmen .

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