Catalyst ™ Turboprop Makes First Flight – India Education | Latest Education News | Global educational news
BERLIN –The Catalyst ™ engine, the first new clean-sheet turboprop engine to enter the business and general aviation market in over 50 years, designed and manufactured entirely in Europe, made its first flight Thursday, September 30 on a Beechcraft King Air Flying test bench.
The successful hour and 40 minute flight took off and landed at Berlin Airport. The Catalyst ™ engine program was officially launched in 2015. The first test drive of the Catalyst ™ engine on the flywheel test bench began in December 2020. In parallel, GE Aviation Turboprop also delivered its first engine in flight condition. its launch customer, Textron Aviation, for the Beechcraft Denali single-engine turboprop. To date, 16 test engines have logged more than 2,600 operating hours in ground tests and completed four certification tests.
“We are very pleased with this successful first flight and proud of our team of outstanding professionals and specialists from across Europe,” said Riccardo Procacci, CEO and Managing Director of Avio Aero and GE Aviation Turboprop Engines. “Catalyst’s first flight opens up a world of opportunities in the business and general aviation market with our launch customer at Textron Aviation, but also in the defense space for applications such as drones and aircraft. coaches. It can be, in addition, a super efficient nucleus which can pave the way for hybridization of flight.
“This is a great time for the Catalyst engine,” said Paul Corkery, Managing Director of GE Aviation Turboprops. “This is the result of tremendous efforts by our brilliant team to get this engine out of the test cell and onto the King Air flying test bench. We are very encouraged by the preliminary data from the first flight, and look forward to continuing flight tests on this revolutionary turboprop, alongside our launch customer, Textron, who is following the same path with its Beechcraft Denali prototype.
“As the first turboprop engine entirely designed, developed and built in Europe in the past half century, the Catalyst engine is an ITAR-free product also available for military applications,” said Pierfederico Scarpa, vice president of marketing and sales at ‘Avio Aero. “In this context, Catalyst has not only technological maturity, but also exceptional performance confirmed by an ongoing validation and certification process. “
The Catalyst ™ engine has undergone the most extensive certification testing ever for a turboprop in the business and general aviation segment. The engine is GE’s first modern Full Authority Digitally Controlled (FADEC) turboprop engine, intended to service the 850-1600 SHP range. The FADEC is capable of providing jet-like single-lever power and propeller control and reduces pilot workload while providing a greater level of control and responsiveness.
“The first flight was very successful. I must say that everything went perfectly ”, declared Sigismond Monnet, chief test pilot. “We actually flew longer than expected and the engine ran as expected. I look forward to continuing the flight test campaign and expanding the Catalyst’s flight envelope.
The Catalyst ™ engine is an original turboprop design to deliver a radical change in performance and is the first turboprop in aviation history manufactured with 3D printed components. The engine features an industry-best 16: 1 overall pressure ratio, allowing the engine to achieve up to 20% less fuel consumption and 10% more cruising power than competitors in the same size category.
The Catalyst ™ engine supply chain and assembly will continue to be based in the European industrial ecosystem. The GE sites involved are: GE Aviation Czech, Avio Aero from Italy and Poland, GE Aviation Advanced Technology from Munich (Germany), GE Engineering Design Center from Warsaw (Poland).
In addition, Catalyst technologies feature prominently in Clean Sky2, the largest European public-private R&D partnership between the European Commission and the European aviation industry, to develop disruptive technologies dedicated to decarbonization.