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GE H-Series Aerobatic Engine Powers Its First Flight On Diamond DART-550

New GE H75-A Features Single-Lever Electronic Engine And Propeller Control

On 4 December 2020, Diamond Aircraft’s DART-550 performed its first flight with the new fully aerobatic GE Aviation H75-A engine at Wiener Neustadt East Airport (LOAN) in Austria.

This new turboprop engine is the first aerobatic engine developed by GE Aviation at its Turboprop headquarters in the Czech Republic to provide 550shp for the next generation of aerobatic turboprop training aircraft. After an extensive testing campaign inside the propeller and dyno test cells at the GE Aviation Czech, the new GE H75-A is set to undergo several flight and aerobatic tests on board the brand-new DART-550 that has already been flying with the modified standard H75 engine.

“We are extremely proud to power the Diamond DART-550,” says Milan Slapak, Executive Director of GE Aviation Czech. “Today’s new generation of aerobatic and trainer aircraft demand more performance through different measures. For an engine, these measures include greater operational efficiency, lower fuel consumption and emissions, high-performance onboard electronics and weight savings optimized by cutting-edge materials.

“The new aerobatic GE H75-A engine was developed to meet these demands,” Slapak continues. “It’s radically different from its competitors. For the first time, a turboprop engine in this power class makes its debut with electronic engine and propeller control unit that allows pilots to perform training flying a single lever aircraft, replicating a jet-piloting experience.”

H-series engines are created to withstand drastic and challenging natural flight conditions. H-series engines have collected more than 560,000 flight hours with a global fleet operating in five continents and available in a power class ranging from 550 to 850shp since entering service in 2012.

“Diamond Aircraft is very happy with the collaboration with GE Aviation for our DART-550 turboprop tandem trainer,” says Robert John, Project Manager DART Program, Diamond Aircraft Austria. “For such a state-of-the-art aircraft you need an equally modern engine platform. The H75 is a very reliable, robust and proven engine that has been further optimized in terms of efficiency and maintenance. Together with Electronic Engine and Propeller Control (EEPC), the new GE H75-A makes a perfect match with our sophisticated DART-550 – ideal for a modern training environment.”

The full composite Diamond DART-550 aerobatic turboprop trainer in tandem seat configuration is designed for usage in pilot entry-level trainings. Powered by GE’s H75-A engine it will be able to perform all aerobatic maneuvers, including: inverted flight, maximum positive and negative g-maneuvers as well as zero-g. Inverted flight capabilities were tested leveraging GE Aviation Czech’s local external R&D network, specifically with Czech Aerospace Research Centre (VZLU) at their static inverted testing bench.



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