Among the smaller companies at AirVenture was Hutterer Engineering, which is promoting a new unique hybrid aircraft.

Designed by company founder Joe Hutterer, the concept utilises a jet engine to provide thrust augmentation to a turboprop powerplant during the take-off and climb phases of flight.

Hutterer claims the "hybrid" configuration could result in a 40% reduction in fuel consumption and exhaust emissions. Additionally, since both engines are mounted near the centerline of the aircraft, there are reduced dangers from asymmetric thrust in case of an engine failure.

Hutterer has patented his design, which he says can be scaled up to work on a six-passenger aircraft to a system for a 50-passenger regional airliner.

The only limitation, he says, is the size and power of the turboprop engines currently available.

Hutterer says he has partnered with Air Plains Services to install his hybrid concept on a Cessna 421. He hopes to fly the modified aircraft for 200h to gather technical data.

But while he has the Cessna 421 and a fuselage assembly jig, Hutterer does not yet have the financing to begin the 18-month-long modifications, which would re-use about three quarters of the aircraft.

Source: Flight International