Milestone In Company's Alternative Fuels Program
Motors has just told ANN about its first test flight of a
certificated aircraft using 94-octane unleaded aviation fuel. The
flight, in collaboration with Hawker Beechcraft Corporation, was
conducted using a production G36 Bonanza.
"This is an accomplishment that adds to TCM's catalog of
aviation firsts, such as the introduction of a horizontally opposed
cylinder configuration, fuel injection, turbo charging, and
electronic engine controls (FADEC)," said Rhett Ross, president of
Teledyne Continental Motors. "TCM is committed to leading the
industry towards a common 100LL alternative fuel that minimizes
cost to aircraft owners."
TCM says the flight profile tested all aspects of flight
including takeoff, climb, maximum power cruise, low power cruise,
descent and landing. The airplane was equipped with data recording
devices to provide data for post flight analysis.
"This is another big step in our sustainability initiative at
Hawker Beechcraft and something that will delight general aviation
pilots," said Ed Petkus, Hawker Beechcraft Vice President, Product
Development and Engineering. "This partnership with TCM exemplifies
the leadership of our companies and our commitment to supporting
the technologies necessary to find an alternative to 100LL. I am
confident our customers and the entire aviation industry will
benefit from our joint efforts."
TCM began investigating unleaded fuel alternatives to 100LL
aviation gas in April 2007. Efforts included participation in
the Coordinated Research Council (CRC), analysis of various
commercial fuel options and extensive fuel tests on engines in the
company's dynamometer test cells.
Prior to conducting its first flight, the company down-selected
its flight test fuels, to the unleaded fuel most likely to be
submitted for certification and standardization as a piston
With the first flights complete, TCM will begin the
certification process of several engine models to meet the needs
for existing and future aircraft. The company is also investigating
other future options, including biofuels.