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The Future Of Diesel Engines...looks Bright  
User currently offlineTripleDelta From Croatia, joined Jul 2004, 1120 posts, RR: 7
Posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 9261 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
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From Avweb's Avflash http://www.avweb.com/eletter/archives/avflash/280-full.html#187987, about a Diamond Twin Star:

"The company says the diesel-powered twin (the same plane that was at AirVenture) averaged a fuel burn of just 5.74 gph (2.87 per side) on a flight from St. John's, Newfoundland, to Porto, Portugal..."

"He had five hours of fuel left when he landed at Porto. According to Diamond, this is the first nonstop trans-Atlantic crossing by a diesel-powered aircraft."

All I can say is: WOW! Unbelievable! Can't wait for these to become widespread. Schools will love them  Smile/happy/getting dizzy. Is it feasible to convert an avgas burner to Diesel though?


No plane, no gain.
32 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePPGMD From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 7542 times:

28.6 NMPG

Jesus that's better fuel economy than my car. This might make a good business light twin because the fuel costs would be reasonably near that of a car. My only wonder what the MX costs will be.



At worst, you screw up and die.
User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29792 posts, RR: 58
Reply 2, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 7529 times:

Yeah but how much tailwind did he have PPGMD.

That is why GPH is a much more meaningful measure of fuel economy



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offlineDesertJets From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7762 posts, RR: 16
Reply 3, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 7496 times:

The pilots were only using a 46% power setting. I wonder what a more realistic cruise setting would yield. Probably still pretty impressive I imagine.

The real benefit of the diesel is that it will run Jet-A... some are even certified to run regular old diesel fuel as well. That and the diesel is a far much simplier engine and has a longer TBO out of the box. I believe the SMA engine has a 3000 hour TBO. No reason not to think as more of them become operational and come back to the factory for rebuilds that the TBO will not become longer.



Stop drop and roll will not save you in hell. --- seen on a church marque in rural Virginia
User currently offlinePPGMD From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 7288 times:

Yeah but how much tailwind did he have PPGMD

Realized that after I posted it, but it does look interesting.



At worst, you screw up and die.
User currently offlineMr Spaceman From Canada, joined Mar 2001, 2787 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 7165 times:

Hi guys.

>> TripleDelta, you asked this question ............

"Is it feasible to convert an avgas burner to Diesel though?"

I haven't read any articles about converting an avgas engine into one that will burn diesel fuel, but there are pure diesel engines being installed into GA airplanes ...... which you're obviously aware of, so the info below is simply some additional info on this topic. Big grin

Here's some info from a small article in Flying magazine (the February 2004 issue) titled "Diesel Engine STD'd in Cessna 182.

"French manufacturer SMA earned French supplemental type certification for the installation of it's SR305-230 turbo-diesel engine in the Cessna 182. The engine received it's FAA certification in August of 2002. The STC is the first of a series that SMA will pursue with partners over the next year. The company is also developing an STC to install the diesel engine in Piper PA-28-series airplanes. SMA also delivered a diesel engine to Cirrus Design, which is studying the possible use of the engine in an SR20."

Here's some links about diesel engines for GA aircraft ...........

http://www.flyingmag.com/article.asp?section_id=&article_id=372

http://www.wilksch.com/TodaysPilot-Nov03.htm

http://www.dieselair.com

http://www.smaengines.com/english/main.htm (click on the SR305-230 engine).


Chris  Smile



"Just a minute while I re-invent myself"
User currently offlinePPGMD From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 7066 times:

The STC also contains a letter saying, "Yes, this pilot is sane, please put JA in this Cessna."  Big grin

Took a Riddle prof some time to convince a fueler that he was sane.  Smile



At worst, you screw up and die.
User currently offlineAviopic From Netherlands, joined Mar 2004, 2681 posts, RR: 42
Reply 7, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks 1 hour ago) and read 5344 times:

Diesel is a lot more compatible to jetfuel, infect jetfuel in your diesel powered car works fine just don't forget to add a little oil.
Avgas is pretty much compatible to a normal fuel albeit of a higher octane.
Yes i tried it in my car(no diesel of course) as well and it runs even better then normal fuel hehe  Smile/happy/getting dizzy especially my bike goes like a rocket ship but tends to run a little hot though.



The truth lives in one’s mind, it doesn’t really exist
User currently offlineBaw2198 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 637 posts, RR: 4
Reply 8, posted (9 years 11 months 2 weeks ago) and read 5333 times:

SMA, ok so they have the bucks to convert a 182 to diesel but they still burn the same GPH the avgas engine does, so there's virtually no incentive to make the switch. According to the last aviation magizine that I read (can't remember which one at the moment).

What happened to the german guy that came up with an inline 4 turbo diesel that was liquid cooled, put it on pa28, and got 4.6 GPH at 4300rpm (engine) prop was at 2450 and all this was at an 85% pwr setting. This should be the guy that the aviation community should be pushing to make the conversions.



"And remember, Keep your stick on the ice"--->Red Green
User currently offlinePPGMD From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 5229 times:

Baw2198,

In some markets, 100LL is more expensive than JA, or nearly impossible to find. In the US we are blessed with relatively low 100LL prices, and because GA is a big enough industry nearly every airport has it.

One other advantage of the AV diesel engines is a higher TBO (right now it's only aimed at 3,000 hours, but the hope to get it higher), single lever operation, all engines are super charged so it will improve high altitude performance, among other improvements.



At worst, you screw up and die.
User currently offlineSaab2000 From Switzerland, joined Jun 2001, 1610 posts, RR: 11
Reply 10, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 5203 times:

I think that the diesel engine will be the most important developent in GA airplanes since good GPS became available.

It always seemed absurd to me that airplane engines used pre-WWII techonology when even the least expensive cars had better stuff. Additionally, ridding the world of leaded gasoline will be a good thing.

Now I am pretty lucky in that I fly with turbines, but I think that the diesel will be an important developement of recip engines.

Just my $.02



smrtrthnu
User currently offlineLiamksa From Australia, joined Oct 2001, 308 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 5 days 18 hours ago) and read 5120 times:

The Centurions which power the DA-42 don't actually have a TBO they have a TBR - Time Between Replacement. It's currently at 1000 hrs but they're targeting 2400.

From the sounds of it the DA-42 is an awesome aircraft - about time GA took a step forward!  Big thumbs up


User currently offlineTripleDelta From Croatia, joined Jul 2004, 1120 posts, RR: 7
Reply 12, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 5090 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
PHOTO SCREENER

Very true. Yet I guess that this engine change will be most welcome by flight schools since:

1.) the plane burns drastically less fuel, important for training a/c that are on the go a lot

2.) there is a standardization of fuel among the various types the school can operate (say a Skyhawk or Warrior can now use the same fuel as a Cheyenne)

3.) it makes life simpler for the low-hour student - so far, all Diesels I have seen in magazines or on the net, don't have a mixture control, just a single throttle lever. For a new and inexperienced pilot, one lever less means a great deal. Though I'll miss adjusting the mixture every now and then...  Big thumbs up



No plane, no gain.
User currently offlinePhollingsworth From United Kingdom, joined Mar 2004, 825 posts, RR: 5
Reply 13, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 5061 times:

Diesel is a lot more compatible to jetfuel, infect jetfuel in your diesel powered car works fine just don't forget to add a little oil.
Avgas is pretty much compatible to a normal fuel albeit of a higher octane.
Yes i tried it in my car(no diesel of course) as well and it runs even better then normal fuel hehe   especially my bike goes like a rocket ship but tends to run a little hot though.


Yup, the problem with Jet A is that is has both a lower lubrosity and viscosity when compared to Diesel. This leads to problems with fuels pumps etc.

As for Avgas. Higher octane fuels are generally less energetic. Therefore, the only way that you would get more power out of a gasoline motor is if the timing had been retarded to deal with pre-ignition problems. Most modern electronically controlled cars will adjust as necessary. However, I don't know about your bike.

Incidentally, you can get many of the benefits of these diesels with new FADEC gas engines. Though they will have a lower overall efficiency. Also the aircraft designed for the typical engines are not the most appropriate choice. The engines will show much greater benefits on newly designed aircraft, e.g., the Diamond twin-star.


User currently offlineCx346 From Greenland, joined Apr 2003, 49 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 4 days 9 hours ago) and read 4896 times:

i thought diesel had a temperature problem below -20F. Is jetstream flight feasible with diesel????

User currently offlinePPGMD From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2453 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 4 days 8 hours ago) and read 4891 times:

Cx346,

Maybe, but I don't think that jetstream flight is within the market for most of the diesel conversions. Also they burn JA, instead of diesel, it's just that the engine operates on the diesel principals.



At worst, you screw up and die.
User currently offlineRadelow From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 426 posts, RR: 3
Reply 16, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 4711 times:

In regards to low temps, there are additives that can combat the low temp problem. One thing that people have missed in this discussion is how reliable diesels are. There is very little go wrong and once the motor is running there really is no ignition system to speak of (diesels run on detonation effectively). The only electronic system involved in running a diesel motor is the high pressure injection system.

One other great thing is you can run a diesel on BioDiesel which is diesel made from soy beans or other plant material. I had a 2003 VW Golf turbo diesel. With some simple modifications I was making over 160hp and 280 ft. lbs. of torque. This from a 1.9 liter turbo diesel. Oh and I got 55+ mpg on the freeway (try 750 MILES from one tank of diesel).

Diesels are just awesome.

Mark


User currently offlineL-188 From United States of America, joined Jul 1999, 29792 posts, RR: 58
Reply 17, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 18 hours ago) and read 4682 times:

thought diesel had a temperature problem below -20F. Is jetstream flight feasible with diesel????

Diesel is a member of the Kerosene family of fuels, which include Kerosene (duh!  Laugh out loud ) Jet fuels, home heating oil. All of these fuels are very similar and in many cases will run equipment designed for other members of the family.

When we are talking about aviation diesels, most of of them are being built with jet fuel in mind, which has been flying aircraft at altitude for several years. There are additives to the jet fuel to keep it warm enough for use at altitude or tank heaters, and apparently they do work because planes have been flying at those heights for many many years now. Diesles do have a higher gel point then Jet A, In fact out in the bush of Alaska a lot of times the construction crews would specifiy a Jet delivery rather then diesel to their constuction equipment because it is usable at colder temps.



OBAMA-WORST PRESIDENT EVER....Even SKOORB would be better.
User currently offline7574EVER From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 478 posts, RR: 5
Reply 18, posted (9 years 11 months 1 week 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 4672 times:

The flight school I'm working at is supposed to be getting a twin star sometime early next year. I can't wait to fly that thing! OH! and the smell of Jet A. God I love my job! (well, most of the time Big grin)


Right rudder....Right rudder...Come on, more right rudder....Right rudder......Aw forget it, I quit!!
User currently offline747400sp From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3508 posts, RR: 2
Reply 19, posted (7 years 8 months 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 3316 times:

I thought jet fuel was a modified version of diesel. In the USN DFM (Diesel Fuel Marine) and JP5 are similar.

User currently offlinePilotpip From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3149 posts, RR: 11
Reply 20, posted (7 years 8 months 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 3303 times:

Quoting Baw2198 (Reply 8):
SMA, ok so they have the bucks to convert a 182 to diesel but they still burn the same GPH the avgas engine does, so there's virtually no incentive to make the switch. According to the last aviation magizine that I read (can't remember which one at the moment).

Jet fuel is usually less expensive at most GA airports. FBOs pump more of it. Just from that standpoint it would save money over Avgas.



DMI
User currently offlineDougloid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (7 years 8 months 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 3215 times:

Seems like Mr. Junkers made a pretty good aero diesel way back when....don't know why everyone's so surprised....the Packard diesel was a turd, though.

User currently offlineTripleDelta From Croatia, joined Jul 2004, 1120 posts, RR: 7
Reply 22, posted (7 years 8 months 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 3167 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
PHOTO SCREENER

Quoting Dougloid (Reply 21):
Seems like Mr. Junkers made a pretty good aero diesel way back when....don't know why everyone's so surprised....

But the Junkers diesel was a big & bulky affair that was somewhat prone to failures and complex to maintain. Plus it was a military design with safety limits and lifetime cut down, not exactly the ideal for civil aviation.

What is interesting now is that there's finally a compact, GA-usable diesel-based engine that works and has, so far, shown some great results. It may have taken 50+ years, but the advancement from the Junkers to the Thielert is a noteworthy one.



No plane, no gain.
User currently offlinePope From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 23, posted (7 years 8 months 1 day ago) and read 3156 times:

The 100LL versus alternative fuels debate is largely chicken or the egg. Ask yourself this, do you think that most FBO's are going to put in a new diesel tank until their is sufficient demand to justify the investment? I'd guess no.

Do you think most people are going to buy an aircraft if it significantly reduces the number of places they can fly to because of the availability of fuel? My guess is NO.


User currently offlinePelican From Germany, joined Apr 2004, 2531 posts, RR: 8
Reply 24, posted (7 years 8 months 23 hours ago) and read 3149 times:

Quoting TripleDelta (Reply 22):
What is interesting now is that there's finally a compact, GA-usable diesel-based engine that works and has, so far, shown some great results. It may have taken 50+ years, but the advancement from the Junkers to the Thielert is a noteworthy one.

I wonder why (or what) it needed so much time. I - as a layman - have wondered why nobody (?) followed Junckers Jumo 204, which was btw a civilian engine.

pelican


25 Pilotpip : Thielert engines are only certified for Jet-A in the US. No new tanks, no new trucks. Most FBOs already have Jet-A tanks and many at larger airports
26 KELPkid : If your car is relatively new, that is a good way to ruin your catalytic converter and/or oxygen sensor, putting Avgas in the tank. Lead will foul bo
27 Pope : Most FBO's do not have Jet-A. You might have said, most large FBO's have Jet-A but the vast majority of airfields in the US served by FBO's do not .
28 Dougloid : On the contrary...Junkers diesel aircraft engines were used by Lufthansa in passenger service. The safety record was very good, particularly when the
29 Pilotpip : I don't know where you live, but in the midwest if the airport has a runway that is longer than 4000 feet, it will have Jet-A in 90% of the cases. If
30 TripleDelta : I thought, and I believe read somewhere though I can place the source, that the Junkers diesels were a bit temperamental and required careful handlin
31 Post contains links Dougloid : True...and for the same reasons the Packard radial diesel was a notorious flop. Apparently the opposed piston idea was one that a number of folks wer
32 APFPilot1985 : I have been flying the DA-42 a lot recently and it is an amazing aircraft. All of the benefits that we get from the motors are great, it is quieter, i
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