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Mon, Aug 01, 2011

New 4 Stroke Axial Engine Introduction

Small, Lightweight Mills For Ultralight, Experimental, And UAV Applications

New Zealand-based Duke Engines LTD has introduced the world's only commercial 4-stroke axial piston spark ignited engine, and was showing it last week at Oshkosh.The engine is lightweight, small, valveless, vibration-free, has very high power density, and runs on most fuels, including kerosene/jet fuel. The Duke engine is a great fit for aerospace applications, including ultralight, experimental and UAV platforms. They have 2 prototype models operational; a 103hp model and a 180hp model The former engine weighs 101 lbs with no gearbox required. The latter engine weighs 101 lbs and requires a gearbox.

These Duke engines have negligible 1st order and 2nd order vibrations. They deliver high thermodynamic efficiency and offer complete fuel flexibility. The engines are far less complex than traditional engines because they have only 3 sets of spark plugs, injectors and ports for 5 cylinders with no valve train. The current Duke engines are the 5th generation prototypes.

The aerodynamically friendly cylindrical shape, with output shaft on center line, and low weight, makes it easy to install in small cowlings. The direct drive option produces 0.7 hp/lb., and the geared option produces over 1.0 hp/lb.

The Duke engines will again be tested in the U.S., and the company says it is actively seeking development partners for their marketing efforts in the U.S.



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