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.
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News of July 01, 2007
Cessna Announces Collaboration With Thielert On Aero Diesels
This is only the beginning, but this is it: Cessna is definitely planning to go diesel. Cessna Aircraft Company announced it has reached agreement with German manufacturer Thielert Aircraft Engines GmbH (TAE) to collaborate on future programs centered on the Thielert diesel engine. "We think the Thielert engine may provide a very worthwhile power option for many of our customers since it runs on jet fuel and diesel," said Cessna Vice President, Worldwide Propeller Aircraft Sales John Doman. "We have had discussions with Frank Thielert and his group for some time, and we think the time is right to move forward." Thielert has won several European certifications since 2002 for retrofitting diesel engines into Cessna aircraft. As ANN reported, a supplemental type certificate (STC) for retrofitting the Cessna 172 was granted in March 2007 by the US Federal Aviation Administration. Thielert already offers Centurion diesel powerplants for new Cessna 172s, installed by Arlington, TX-based Van Bortel Aircraft. Van Bortel replaces the conventional engines in new planes, with Cessna's support. Over the upcoming years Thielert expects thousands of engine deliveries. This announcement is a significant step forward in the relationship between the two companies, established through a framework agreement dated 2004. Based on unit sales, Cessna Aircraft Company is the world largest manufacturer of general aviation airplanes. In 2006, Cessna delivered 1,239 aircraft, including 409 Cessna 172 Skyhawk piston aircraft, and reported revenues of about $4.2 billion and a backlog of $8.5 billion. Since the company was originally established in 1927, more than 189,000 Cessna airplanes have been delivered to nearly every country in the world. The global fleet of about 40,000 Cessna 172 is the largest fleet of piston aircraft in the world. With a diesel conversion, any aircraft becomes a new aircraft because of extended performance and safety. This is especially true of the sound and reliable 172, which, with modern avionics and auto-pilot, will now become a minimal but true long range IFR airplane. We can expect, however, that a Thielert of more than 135 HP will soon be offered... The first programme is likely to be the 135hp (100kW) Centurion but with the 2.0 liter version. The engine is already available as a retrofit on the piston single type, but the venture is the first time Cessna will offer a diesel version as standard. The TAE 260kW Centurion 4.0 diesel powerplant is offered for retrofit on the Cessna 206 Stationair, but has not been STCd in the US yet; and the company is developing an engine to power the Cessna out-of-production 340 and 421 piston twins. Should we expect that Cessna will be back on the market of new piston engine twins?
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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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