France’s SMA light aircraft engine company is part of the giant Safran Group but its potential customers in the USA see it as the maker of the SR305-230 aviation diesel engine.
This innovative new engine is designed to run on Jet A and Jet A1 kerosene, giving it ultimate fuel flexibility around the world.
Yesterday Brent Maule told of his flight to Oshkosh piloting his family company’s prototype Maule M9 utility aircraft, which uses the French engine and is targeted for full FAA certification by the end of this year.
“I enjoy flying this new aircraft in our range more than any other,” he says. “On the trip, I couldn’t believe how quiet it was nor how smooth the engine felt, especially as we were flying for a little over six hours with a couple of weather-induced stops en-route.”
Brent says the economy is “unbelievable”. “We used 33% less fuel than the 260hp Avgas engine would have done on the same flight. And, even though the engine is around 10% more expensive than the equivalent gasoline unit, I believe that it will be far more economical both to own and run.”
The turbo-charged SMA SR305 engine produces 230hp for five minutes, then maintains 200hp continuous, up through 10,000ft.
As the SR305-230 turns at a low 2,200rpm there’s no need for reduction gear. This means fewer parts (585 in total) and reduced weight and maintenance costs.
With a recommended TBO of 2,000hrs (targeted to be increased to 3,000hrs) the five-litre (305 cubic inches) engine also has synchronized engine control unit redundancy (SECUR) that eliminates any risk of pilot mismanagement.
Source: Flight International