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Turbo prop


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  • 2 weeks later...

I suspect you will have trouble finding any sort of turboprop or turboshaft engine with such low output power, even if de-rated. Even the APU engines made by Garrett and Allied Signal are likely to produce way too much power for conversion, bearing in mind that most of the useable power in a gas-turbine engine in in the last 20% of N1 speed. Operating turbojets at lower RPM than they are designed to work at just result in their thermodynamic efficiency taking a nosedive, which doesn't do much for their meeting TBO etc.


Also, the moment you put any sort of gas-turbine engine on an ultralight it ceases to be an ultralight and becomes Experimental.


If your question is purely hypothetical then perhaps the Model Gas Turbine Builders Association (in the UK) may be able to assist. If you are seriously thinking of powering an ultralight with a gas-turbine, I'd suggest thinking again. The amount of fuel you would need to carry for any practical flying would just about equal the zero-fuel weight of the aircraft.



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Solar T62 is the most popular APU conversion and there are a few microlight helicopters - the Helicycle - that use them in NZ.


I'm a bit disturbed about the assumption about ultralights not having them - ANO 95.55 on this site talks about must have a propellor and single engine - is that not OK in AUS?


Dieselten is right on about the efficiency and fuel requirements, most APUs draw over 1 lbs / hp /hr fuel which is 60 litres /hr for the Garrett JFS100A and that only drops to about 45 L/hr for cruise there is an article on the web about a Kr2 in aus. that had one (3 actually if you count the rebuilds)


If you just want to just feel the noise have a look at my testbed



Cheers all



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  • 4 weeks later...

Have you ever given Model aircraft engines a though? I know it sounds ridiculous but have a look at this page




And click the link at the bottom of the page to watch the video, You could make a nice multi engine experimental with these. I've seen stranger things done!!!!





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  • 2 weeks later...



I wouldn't hold my breath for a suitable turbo-prop for our use. They are interesting to follow, BUT...........


1 they use LOTS of fuel Especially in small sizes.


2. They tend to melt when you are starting them.


3.When they fail or flame out they create massive drag because of the large reduction gear ratio, back to the compressor & turbine, which are pumping air. (needs quick feather).


4.The fuel control unit has to be matched to the load. ie. pitch control, ground fine locks etc.or melt turbine.


5. They need relatively large starter motors.


6. Can have trouble accelerating unless 2-spool, or centrifugal compressor,or bleed air valves.


7. If they are well made they won't be cheap.


8. Operate more efficiently at altitude.


What a pity, otherwise they would be beaut! Nev....



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Instead of hunting around for derated industrial or aviation based turbines, try going the other way and have a look at what the model aircraft guys are up to in the turbine field, including turboprops.


Some of the turbine stuff they are developing is quite mind boggling.


They are also up sizing their turbines and are now starting to move into the bottom end, small sized military and civilian UAV market.


Just google 'model aircraft turboprops" or go to these links for starters;






The statistics for the SWB turboprop are 99.6 HP and if the 460 lbs [ 208 kgs ] thrust is static thrust, then it whops the backside off the 120hp Jab 3300 with around a 155kgs+ static thrust with the standard prop.


To make things even more interesting, apparently the SWB turbines are built using components from or very similar to the turbo chargers from the big truck diesels.


Have fun! Cheers!



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