Rolls-Royce Trent 700 engines are to power 20 Airbus A330 aircraft from Air China’s fleet under a $1.5bn deal.

The engine features a three-shaft design, wide chord fan blade and achieves a thrust of 72,000lb at take-off.

Air China senior vice-president He Li said the carrier has been pleased with the performance and service support for its existing Trent 700s.

“This was a major factor in our latest engine selection,” he said.

Rolls-Royce customer business senior vice-president Phil Harris said the Trent 700 offers Air China many advantages, such as the ability to maximise capacity at hot and high altitude airports, minimise fuel costs and benefit from the Rolls-Royce TotalCare comprehensive long-term support package.

The A330s on order presently, will be delivered from 2011 and will bring the number of Air China Rolls-Royce-powered A330’s to a total of 43.