News, facts, and comments on the coming revolution for piston-engine aircraft.
In 1998, one diesel engine flew on a converted airplane for the first time since 1945. Today, close to 4,000 singles and twins are flying. This is the beginning of a worldwide trend which will eventually allow a rebirth of the piston-engined aircraft, around new specs and new missions.
DieselAir Research, Inc., the publisher of The DieselAir Newsletter, offers strategic intelligence services to the aircraft industry, its suppliers and its customers who ambition to benefit from this global change of paradigm which will mean new markets, new concepts, new services, new materials and components… You may be interested in our services if your firm designs and/or manufactures aircraft and components, aero engines, avionics, propellers and engine components, fuel systems or additives, advanced materials, or industry specific machinery for manufacturing of these; or provides aviation services such as fuel production or distribution; flight training, aircraft chartering, maintenance and operations (FBO’s); or airport management and design, traffic control, hangar, materials handling and storage equipment; or consulting and financial services for these industries; or advertising, sales promotion, trade shows, specialized publications.
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News of April 23, 2003
Honda Motors claims to have developed an aero-engine, FADEC monitored, running on Mogas, which outperforms conventional air-cooled opposite cylinders engines in terms of power/weight and specific fuel consumption. Honda joint ventures with Teledyne Continental to assess the market for this engine. This means that Continental abandons its diesel project developed with NASA funding. It also might mean that Continental expects Mogas to be more and more available on airfields which may be good news for the existing fleet of Mogas STC'd planes. But the same may be true for diesel Mogas in the long term.
Running an engine on motor fuel, whether diesel or gasoline, makes all the more sense as both jet fuel and Avgas are priced roughly twice their Mogas equivalents. However, we think that the future will favor the diesel for some basic reasons: safety (diesel fuel ignites only under extreme conditions); overall fuel economy and longer range combined due to higher efficiency of diesel against comparable gasoline engine and higher density of diesel fuel; lower maintenance costs (no plugs, no ignition system); and nominal power maintained at higher altitudes meaning more speed.
posted at 4:24 AM
News of April 21, 2003
Diamond Aircraft's DA42 Twin Star, powered by 2 Thielert/Centurion 1.7l, 135HP diesel engines, demonstrated 201 knots at 18,000 ft., consuming 11.8 gallons/h. FAA certification is expected in early 2004. First deliveries in mid-2004. The 4 seater plane should be priced at $360,000. Fuel is indifferently Jetfuel or motordiesel at around $1.40-1.50/gallon. These few figures demonstrate the real breakthrough made possible by aerodiesels. Thielert is preparing a V8 version of its engine aiming at the huge 300-350HP retrofit market.
AeroDiesel Engines (ADE) is the official SMA distributor for Mexico. It is aiming first at retrofitting the Pipers PA25 Pawnee cropduster and PA34 Seneca, and the Cessnas 182, 206 and 210 and intends to capture the Mexican retrofit market through regional installation centers. This is the first time we hear mentioned the 206 and 210 as possible SMA retrofits. We suppose ADE is preparing for the future SMA 300HP.
posted at 4:25 AM
News of April 20, 2003
First flight test published in Europe for Cessna 172N retrofitted with Thielert/Centurion 135HP engine.
Aviation & Pilote, French magazine, published in its April '03 issue the first complete flight test. The 172N used is retrofitted with the 1.7 liter Thielert/Centurion geared down for propeller rpm of 2,300 at cruising speed. Propeller is 3-blade, variable pitch automatically controlled by the FADEC monitor: The pilot operates power with throttle only. Key conclusions: take-off roll, initial climb, cruise speed are all substantially comparable to the 172N previously equipped with Lycoming O-320 of 160 HP. Above 6,000 ft climb rate is significantly better, with a ceiling of 17,500 ft (+3,000 ft). Cruise speed around 5 knots better around 10,000 ft. Silence is significantly improved. Fuel consumption is 4.6 gallons/hour at 75% power cruise. Payload is unchanged.The engine runs indifferently on jetfuel or motor diesel fuel. Water-cooled engine allows fan-blown cabin heating. Engine temperature remains remarkably constant under severe power and speed changes. Retrofit cost labor included is marketed at Euros 40,000 ($ 44,000).
posted at 4:26 AM
News of April 19, 2003
Gracious Thanks to www.aerotalk.com for the link from their site.
posted at 4:28 AM
News of April 18, 2003
Teledyne Continental and Honda Motors
April 03 - Teledyne Continental and Honda Motors announced that they jointly fund a feasibility study for a new generation, 4 stroke 4 cylinder aero engine to run on Mogaz. This seems to confirm that Continental is now betting against the aerodiesel trend.
Meanwhile Diamond Aircraft is planning for FAA certification of their DA42 Twin Diesel for 2004. Cruise speed at best altitude: 200 Knots plus with 2 135HP Thielert engines.
posted at 4:32 AM
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Every month: news, facts, and comments on the coming revolution for piston-engines aircrafts between 130 and 400 HP: Retrofitting a diesel engine to run on Jetfuel or Kerosene, reduce Gallons/Hour by some 30%, eliminate ignition systems (magnetos, spark plugs) and their problems, eliminate mixture control, increase TBO to 2,400-3,000 hours, increase performance between 6,000 and 12,500 ft., and drastically reduce Operating Costs.
The letter is intended for piston engines aircraft owners, manufacturers, fleet operators and FBOs, re-manufacturers of engines for these aircrafts, manufacturers of engine components and ancillaries, and all professionals acting in decisions of engine exchange or refitting at TBO, in North and South America, Pacific Rim, African continent, and all parts of the world were Avgas, Mogas, Kerosene and Jetfuel are available.
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