|National origin||United States/Sweden|
|Manufacturer||Volvo Aero/GKN Aerospace |
|Major applications||Saab JAS 39 Gripen|
|Developed from||General Electric F404|
The Volvo RM12 is a low-bypass afterburning turbofan jet engine developed for the Saab JAS 39 Gripen fighter. A version of the General Electric F404, the RM12 was produced by Volvo Aero (now GKN Aerospace Engine Systems).
Produced by Volvo Aero (now GKN Aerospace Engine Systems), the RM12 is a derivative of the General Electric F404-400. Changes from the standard F404 include greater reliability for single-engine operations (including a better tolerance to birdstrikes), increased thrust, and the adoption of a full authority digital engine control (FADEC) system.
The fan was completely redesigned to pass more flow for higher thrust and to be more tolerant of a bird-strike. The requirement was for minimal thrust loss, 6% was achieved during a test, after ingesting a half-kilogram (1.1 lb) pigeon-size bird at take-off conditions. It was achieved with thickened first stage blades which deform (causing the thrust loss) but do not fracture or cause downstream damage.
Several subsystems and components were also redesigned to reduce maintenance demands. The air intakes of the engine were designed to minimize radar reflection from the engine fan, reducing the radar cross section of the aircraft overall. The F404's analogue Engine Control Unit was replaced with the Digital Engine Control – jointly developed by Volvo and GE – which communicates with the cockpit through the digital data buses and, as redundancy, a hydromechanical back-up. Hydromechanical backup remains in the new Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) which Volvo began developing in 1996. General Electric produces 50% of the engine. Elements such as the fan/compressor discs and case, compressor spool, hubs, seals, and afterburner are manufactured in Sweden, final assembly also taking place there.
Data from
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Volvo RM12.|