The general aviation market is expected to soon have a high-powered diesel engine option for high performance airplanes as EPS is closing in on FAA certification for its Graflight V-8 engine. The company expects to have both a type certificate and a production certificate in hand by the end of the year.
As first deliveries approach, EPS is expanding its facilities at the New Richmond Regional Airport (KRNH) in New Richmond, Wisconsin. A 15,000 square-foot, two-story hangar is being built that will be used for testing and for STC work for a variety of airplanes. EPS is also preparing to build a manufacturing facility, the construction of which is planned to begin at the end of the year.
EPS has been flying its engine on a Cirrus SR22 test bed. Rated in the range of 320 hp to 420 hp, the Graflight V-8 is expected to be suitable for a variety of helicopters and single- and twin-engine airplanes, including the Robinson R44, Beechcraft Bonanza and Baron, Cessna TTx and 206, GippsAero GA8 AirVan and more.
The engine will initially be offered as an STC’d replacement for existing aircraft engines. With a lower fuel burn as compared with comparatively rated avgas-powered engines and the lower cost for diesel fuel, EPS claims the Graflight V-8 will offer more than 40 percent cost savings for an average mission and an approximate 56 percent increase in range. The engine is expected to have a 3,000-hour TBO, further increasing the cost savings for operators.
The development of the Graflight V-8 includes several innovations, including a patented glow plug, a new firing order, a carbon/steel crankcase and monitoring software unique to the engine.
If you are planning on attending the EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin this month, you can learn more about the engine at EPS’s exhibit in space 16 and 17, west of Hangar C.