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Piper Raises Eyebrows with Possible Diesel-Burning Seminole

Legendary Trainer Twin Could Get Even More Affordable, Profitable

Piper Aircraft announced a study with DeltaHawk Engines to evaluate the ease, utility, and popularity of bolting the latter's Jet-A powered, STC diesel engine to the ever popular trainer.

While many were abuzz with the possibility of a Diamond DA-42 competitor right out the gate, Piper has only signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the engine manufacturer - an actual, factory produced aircraft isn't in the cards just yet. The bean counters have to give their approval, the flight testers have to grant their blessing, and the market researchers have to prove there's enough of a market for a diesel twin in order to start cutting it into production. Nevertheless, it should prove plenty popular, a piston-engine twin that happily slurps down Jet-A instead of 100 Low-Lead.

Luckily, DeltaHawk has already been pursuing the STC to install their DHK engine family in the Piper Seminole, as both a retrofit and a new production. The brands' spiciest engine, the DHK235, offers a Rated Takeoff Power and Max Continuous Power rating of 235 horsepower. A similar, lower-output version in the DHK200 offers 200 horsepower of the same, with the DHK180 being the straggler at a more easygoing, and easily installed 180 horsepower.

“We are thrilled to collaborate with Piper Aircraft on this exciting project,” said Christopher Ruud, CEO of DeltaHawk. “Our advanced Diesel engine technology has been developed to meet the evolving needs of the aviation industry, and we see tremendous potential in integrating it into Piper’s PA-44 Seminole. This partnership underscores our commitment to driving innovation and sustainability in aviation.”

“We are excited for this collaboration to install the DHK engine into the Seminole for many reasons, especially knowing the reliability of DeltaHawk’s engines,” said Marc Ouellet, VP of Engineering and Manufacturing at Piper Aircraft. “We are constantly seeking opportunities to innovate and advance our aircraft offerings. Working with DeltaHawk on this project aligns with our mission to explore cutting-edge technologies that can deliver significant benefits to our customers and the industry as a whole.”

FMI: www.deltahawk.com



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