You could say that Phill O’Dell, the latest speaker announced for the BMF All Industry Conference in June, was born to fly. O’Dell was until very recently the director of flight operations for Rolls-Royce plc having previously completed 18 years in the RAF, culminating in his role as officer commanding the research and development Flight of the Fast Jet Test Squadron.
O’Dell has not only flown a wide variety of aircraft – ranging from the Buccaneer, Hawk, Jaguar and F-14 Tomcat in his RAF days, to the Airbus A380, Boeing 787 and the iconic Vulcan, XH 558 – he has also contributed to a number of major engine development programmes including the Trent 900 for the Airbus A380 and the Trent 1000 for the 787 Dreamliner. Most recently he has been the project pilot for ‘Project ACCEL’, Rolls-Royce’s all-electric aircraft the ‘Spirit of Innovation’, currently the fastest all-electric vehicle in the world.
O’Dell also flew the Rolls-Royce Heritage Flight’s Spitfire at airshows and events throughout the UK and is still an ambassador for fly2help, a charity that enables people to experience the freedom of flight.
BMF CEO John Newcomb said: “Phill is one of the country’s foremost experts advancing the technology of aircraft engine development. As we all seek ways to reduce our carbon footprint, it will be fascinating to hear how the air industry is advancing engine technology.”