A Wisconsin company said its new high-performance geared diesel aircraft engine reached a development milestone this week when it passed vibration tests done by propeller manufacturer Hartzell. Induced vibration through a gear reduction system eats props but Engineered Propulsion Systems (EPS) spokesman Steven Weinzierl said the integrated counter-vibration systems in the engine work and the engine runs more smoothly than many gasoline engines. “It’s a distinct departure from prior engine designs, and we believe what Hartzell has now confirmed: induced vibration is no longer an issue,” Weinzierl said. Hartzell said Engineered Propulsion Systems’ Vision 350 easily met is durability standards when tested with traditional aluminum props, a carbon fiber model and its new five-bladed graphite/composite propeller. “We were very encouraged to see that the stresses on the propellers were acceptable and lower than most engines we have surveyed,” said Hartzell spokesman Bruce Hanke. “We look forward to continuing to work with EPS on this innovative new product.” As we reported in 2010, EPS is developing the engine as a direct replacement for high-horsepower gas engines that need leaded fuel to achieve full performance.
The Vision 350 will put out 350 horsepower burning Jet A or kerosene and the fuel burn at 60 percent cruise is 12.3 gph. The engine is a “flat vee” configuration with 4.4 liter displacement and develops full power at 3,800 rpm, hence the need for a gearbox. It’s liquid cooled and its integrated preheating system burns fuel from the tanks to warm the coolant in the water jackets for cold starts. Weinzierl said the engine is designed specifically for aviation use and will find a market as a retrofit and new installation in high-performance piston aircraft. Cirrus has already expressed interest in the engine. The company is also targeting the military drone market. It’s now building pre-production test articles but has
Why The Vision 350? Many have asked why is the EPS Vision 350 engine so different than any diesel airplane engine in recent times? The answer is very simple. All of today’s “modern” aircraft engines are currently reproductions, modifications or replications of 1930’s aircraft or automotive engines. Many of these engines use leaded fuel that was banned in cars in the 1970’s. The Vision 350 brings clean and efficient, “green” power to the forefront of aviation engines. It’s use of Jet A, JP-8 or diesel fuel eliminates the need for the outdated, expensive and environmentally un-safe leaded airplane fuel currently in use. The EPS engine affords pilots the opportunity to shift to a more advanced technology engine with a patented purpose-built design tailored for the aircraft application. EPS offers aircraft OEM’s access to developing aviation markets in Asia, South America, Africa and other markets because of its fuel availability. With an emphasis on eliminating leaded airplane fuel the current fleet of more than 200,000 airplanes is at risk of having a forced retirement. The EPS Vision 350 is the answer to the future of where lightweight airplane engines should be. It is a twenty first century airplane engine.
The EPS Vision 350 advantage is as large as the present mature marketplace in North America and is sure to expand as the development and production of the engine moves forward.
The Following describe the key points that make Vision 350 unique and extremely marketable.
Vision 350 Engine Technical Description
- • Configuration: “Flat-Vee” 8-cyl. 4-stroke Diesel
- • Displacement: 4.42 liters
- • Max. Power: ≥ 350 bhp @ 3800 rpm
- • Fuel Cons: ≈ 12.3 gph @ 250 hp setting
- • Fuel: Jet A, Jp-8, or diesel
- • Cooling: Integrated liquid-cooling
- • Engine Control: Electronic engine management
- • Target Weight: ≤ 298 kg, (wet running weight)