Think about all the different components that goes into making an aircraft engine. The complexity and costs of each engine must be the reason why more people don’t build aircraft in their spare time. Rolls-Royce, maker of fine aircraft engines, has proven that all you need are LEGO.
Rolls-Royce showed up at the Farnborough International Airshow yesterday with what they called a “novel jet engine ‘concept’.” It’s novel because the engine is made entirely out of LEGO – 152,455 pieces to be exact. The engine itself is a scale replica of the Rolls-Royce 1000, the engine that powers the Boeing 787 Dreamliner. The idea was that the designers and engineers at Rolls-Royce could show people how aircraft engines work by displaying every moving and working part on a smaller scale.
So how big is this thing? Over 150,000 pieces and eight weeks of construction must mean this LEGO creation breaks some kind of record. I’m not sure, but at 677 pounds and 6.5 feet long, it should break every LEGO record ever.
Unfortunately, the LEGO jet engine won’t actually lift a plane into the sky, at least not yet. The children of the future, who are expected to attend the Airshow in mass quantity, certainly might fulfill my dream of a LEGO future. Graham Schumacher, Head of Development Services at Rolls-Royce, said that the LEGO engine was built in part to attract young people with the fun side of engineering. If I was a kid, I would want to be an engineer right away just to play around with LEGO.
Check out the amazing pictures of the LEGO engine while you’re at it. It should be reiterated that this a fully working engine. That should make your nerdy sense start tingling if it already hasn’t.