Rolls-Royce joins celebrations as Vietnam Airlines becomes the world’s second operator of the A350 XWB

Tuesday, 30 June 2015

Picture Caption (Left-Right): Philip Scruggs, AerCap, President and Chief Commercial Officer; Fabrice Bregier, Airbus, President and Chief Executive Officer; Trinh Ngoc Thanh, Vietnam Airlines, Executive Vice President – Commercial; and Eric Schulz, Rolls-Royce, President - Civil Large Engines

Rolls-Royce today joined celebrations to mark Vietnam Airlines becoming the second airline in the world to operate the Airbus A350 XWB, powered by the world’s most efficient large civil aero engine, the Trent XWB.

A formal aircraft handover ceremony took place today at Airbus headquarters in Toulouse, France. The aircraft, which the airline has leased from AerCap, will fly to Hanoi, Vietnam, later today and will begin commercial service later this week.

Trinh Ngoc Thanh, Vietnam Airlines, Executive Vice President – Commercial; Philip Scruggs, AerCap, President and Chief Commercial Officer; Fabrice Bregier, Airbus, President and Chief Executive Officer; and  Eric Schulz, Rolls-Royce, President - Civil Large Engines, attended the ceremony.

The Rolls-Royce Trent XWB is the only engine that powers the A350 XWB and more than 1,500 engines have already been sold to 40 customers.

The A350 XWB delivers a 25 per cent fuel burn improvement compared to previous generation aircraft. The Trent XWB is also one of the quietest engines that Rolls-Royce has ever produced for the wide-body market.
The engine, which powered the first A350 XWB to go into service at the start of this year, is the result of years of research and development and advanced engineering of more than 20,000 parts. It has been tested to extremes of performance on the ground and in the air around the world. It is the sixth member the Trent engine family which, along with the RB211, has built a reputation for excellence over four decades.

Dr Pham Ngoc Minh, Vietnam Airlines, President and Chief Executive Officer, said:As one of the first operators of the A350 XWB, we look forward to providing our passengers with outstanding service using state-of-the-art engines that combine the best in both efficiency and reliability.”

Philip Scruggs said: “We are committed to modern, fuel-efficient aircraft to maximise economic and operational efficiency for our customers. The Trent XWB plays a crucial role in making this happen on the A350 XWB.”

Fabrice Bregier said: “We are proud to see Vietnam Airlines become the second airline in the world to operate the all-new A350 XWB. We are confident that the A350 XWB will enable Vietnam Airlines to consolidate its position as one of Asia’s leading international carriers, bringing its passengers the best the industry has to offer.

“We also thank AerCap for its ongoing confidence in our products and endorsement of their long term investment value. The delivery of the A350 XWB for Vietnam Airlines marks a new milestone in our excellent partnership with AerCap, together offering a wide range of modern and cost-efficient fleet solutions for airlines in every market segment.”

Eric Schulz, Rolls-Royce, President – Civil Large Engines, said: We are very proud to be with Vietnam Airlines, AerCap and Airbus today to mark another chapter in the A350 XWB story. The Trent XWB is the latest example of our ability to take the best in technology to deliver new standards of excellence. We look forward to supporting Vietnam Airlines for many years to come.”

Vietnam Airlines will operate a total of 14 A350 XWBs.

Trent XWB – incredible engineering by numbers:

  • The front fan is nearly 10ft feet across – its diameter is larger than the fuselage of Concorde
  • It sucks in up to 1.3 tonnes of air, the equivalent of a squash court, every second at take-off.
  • The force on a fan blade at take-off is equivalent to a load of almost 90 tons, the same as nine London buses hanging off each blade.
  • High pressure turbine blades inside the engine rotate at 12,500 rpm, with their tips reaching 1,200mph – twice the speed of sound.
  • At take off each of the engine’s 68 high pressure turbine blades generates around 900 horsepower per blade – the equivalent to that of a Formula One racing car.
  • At full power, air leaves the nozzle at the back of the engine travelling at almost 1000mph.

High-res photographs are available at:

Library broadcast-quality footage of Trent XWB production and testing plus interviews with Rolls-Royce executives on the importance of the engine to the company, are available at:

About Rolls-Royce Holdings plc

  1. Rolls-Royce’s vision is to create better power for a changing world via two main business divisions, Aerospace and Land & Sea. These business divisions address markets with two strong technology platforms, gas turbines and reciprocating engines. Aerospace comprises Civil Aerospace and Defence Aerospace. Land & Sea comprises Marine, Nuclear and Power Systems.
  2. Rolls-Royce has customers in more than 120 countries, comprising more than 380 airlines and leasing customers, 160 armed forces, 4,000 marine customers including 70 navies, and more than 5,000 power and nuclear customers.
  3. Our business is focused on the 4Cs:
    • Customer – placing the customer at the heart of our business
    • Concentration – deciding where to grow and where not to
    • Cost – continually looking to increase efficiency
    • Cash – improving financial performance.
  4. Annual underlying revenue was £14.6 billion in 2014, around half of which came from the provision of aftermarket services. The firm and announced order book stood at £73.7 billion at the end of 2014.
  5. In 2014;Rolls-Royce invested £1.2 billion on research and development. We also support a global network of 31 University Technology Centres, which position Rolls-Royce engineers at the forefront of scientific research.
  6. Rolls-Royce employs over 54,000 people in more than 50 countries. Over 15,500 of these are engineers.
  7. The Group has a strong commitment to apprentice and graduate recruitment and to further developing employee skills. In 2014 we employed 354 graduates and 357 apprentices through our worldwide training programmes. Globally we have over 1,000 Rolls-Royce STEM ambassadors who are actively involved in education programmes and activities; we have set ourselves a target to reach 6 million people through our STEM outreach activities by 2020.