THE first of a new breed of engine has entered service head of schedule.

The new version of the Rolls-Royce RB211-524 engine, which the firm's Barnoldswick site manufactures components for, powered a Boeing 747-400 on a flight from Hong Kong to Bangkok.

The engine, which was due to come into operation later this year, aims to be more fuel efficient and need less maintenance than previous versions.

Over the next four years, Cathay Pacific will convert all the RB211-524 engines that power its 747-400 fleet to the new standard.

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