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Challenges of turboprop engine installation on small aircraft

Paweł Guła (Center of New Technologies, Łukasiewicz Research Network - Institute of Aviation, Warsaw, Poland)
Dawid Ulma (Center of New Technologies, Łukasiewicz Research Network - Institute of Aviation, Warsaw, Poland)
Krzysztof Żurek (Center of New Technologies, Łukasiewicz Research Network - Institute of Aviation, Warsaw, Poland)
Rafał Żurawski (Center of New Technologies, Łukasiewicz Research Network - Institute of Aviation, Warsaw, Poland)

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology

ISSN: 0002-2667

Article publication date: 5 June 2019

Issue publication date: 15 August 2019

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present the challenges of turbine engine installation on small aircraft. The work was a part of the European Union project Efficient Systems and Propulsion for Small Aircraft, FP7 EU – Activity, 7.1.4. improving cost efficiency.

Design/methodology/approach

Few of the most interesting issues associated with replacing a piston engine with a turboprop engine were chosen: changes in engine bay cooling, air inlet, exhaust system, nacellès weight and parts reduction, flight tests and performance. The publication presents an approach to: design, assemble and test the small aircraft with a turboprop engine.

Findings

Replacement of piston engine by turbine was carried out. The full program of ground and flight test small aircraft has been successfully completed. Pros and cons of the new design are described in the paper.

Practical implications

Currently, aviation gasoline (AVGAS ) is increasingly being replaced by JET-A1 (kerosene-type fuels) or diesel fuel. The change concerns engine replacement and all the necessary additional components on the aircraft. This is consistent with the new directions of development of aviation: clean, green and eco design. Replacing the piston engine with a turbine allows improvement to performance and reduces operation cost.

Originality/value

The achieved results allow for identifying and highlighting new directions of aviation technology development. A significant added value is to draw attention to the necessity of preparing for future requirements and amendments in regulations for the new class of aircraft: general aviation SET(L) – single engine turboprop.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

The works were carried out within the project “Efficient Systems and Propulsion for Small Aircraft” – ESPOSA, Work programme topic: AAT. 2011.4.4-4. An integrated approach to efficient propulsion and related aircraft systems for small aircraft Grant Agreement No: 284,859” co-financed by Ministry of Science and Higher Education.

Citation

Guła, P., Ulma, D., Żurek, K. and Żurawski, R. (2019), "Challenges of turboprop engine installation on small aircraft", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 91 No. 7, pp. 938-948. https://doi.org/10.1108/AEAT-09-2017-0198

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

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