Rolls-Royce, Purdue sign $75M sustainable power systems research and testing agreement

Rolls-Royce and Purdue University have signed a research and testing agreement that will bring $75 million to the West Lafayette, Indiana, campus over the next 10 years, marking the largest deal with an industry partner in the school’s history.

The money will go towards testing and research with a focus on the areas of gas turbine technology and electrical and digital technology. More specifically, the investment will be focused at Purdue’s Zucrow Laboratories — the largest academic propulsion laboratory in the world — for research in sustainable power systems through advanced technology in electrification, turbines, compressors, and combustion with sustainable fuels.

Purdue announced in April that it would construct a $73 million, 55,000-square-foot high-speed propulsion laboratory for hypersonic technologies in the Discovery Park District on campus.

“Purdue has become the epicenter of hypersonic research and testing in the U.S.,” said Mung Chiang, the John A. Edwardson Dean of the College of Engineering, noting the university’s own investment for federal and industry projects, such as the wind tunnel and manufacturing facility announced last year, and the high-speed propulsion facility coming later this year.

The relationship between Rolls-Royce and Purdue has been ongoing for 70 years, with more than 600 Purdue graduates among the company’s current workforce in Indianapolis.

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