Rolls-Royce and DSTA to optimise engine maintenance using AI

25 July 2019 (Last Updated July 25th, 2019 11:47)

Rolls-Royce is partnering with Singapore’s Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) to develop and deploy new digital technologies to optimise the Republic of Singapore Air Force’s (RSAF) engine maintenance.

Rolls-Royce and DSTA to optimise engine maintenance using AI
Rolls-Royce Defence President Tom Bell and DSTA chief executive Tan Peng Yam at the MoU signing event in July last year at the Farnborough Airshow, UK. Credit: © Rolls-Royce plc.

Rolls-Royce is partnering with Singapore’s Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) to develop and deploy new digital technologies to optimise the Republic of Singapore Air Force’s (RSAF) engine maintenance.

In July last year, Rolls-Royce and DSTA entered a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to collaborate on digital service solutions.

Through the collaboration, DSTA intends to improve the availability and performance of RSAF aircraft. Rolls-Royce engines power the RSAF’s C-130 Hercules aircraft, G550 early-warning aircraft and A330 multi-role tanker transport.

The partnership will look to leverage artificial intelligence (AI) to analyse images and videos in order to optimise time and resources dedicated to engine maintenance.

DSTA air systems director Ang Jer Meng said: “There is much value and potential in tapping AI to enhance the efficiency of the RSAF’s overall engine maintenance processes. We will continue to team up with global partners such as Rolls-Royce, as we unlock innovative technological solutions for Singapore’s defence.”

In a joint statement, the organisations stated that the machine vision technology will be used for engine borescope applications.

Borescopes are optical inspection instruments that feature a tool-mounted camera that allows for inspection of engine parts.

Rolls-Royce and DSTA are keen to automate this process with AI to achieve enhanced efficiency and performance.

The partners will work together to develop and test a solution for improving borescope inspection procedures.

Rolls-Royce senior vice-president for India and South Asia Louise Donaghey said: “This collaboration with Singapore will propel us forward in achieving our vision of becoming the world’s leading industrial technology company, by helping us overcome the challenges that come with developing and deploying new technologies.”

In addition to data analytics, the project will involve aircraft engine digital twins to enable modelling of different scenarios digitally in order to achieve improvements in engine design.

In July last year, an inter-disciplinary DSTA team collaborated with the Republic of Singapore Navy to boost the efficiency of maintenance processes on board stealth frigates using augmented reality (AR) technology.