April 8, 2009 – The latest addition to Hartzell Propeller’s Top Prop™ line up is their second generation, advanced composite propeller now STC’d and available for Piper PA46 Matrix and Mirage piston-engine aircraft.
The latest addition to Hartzell Propeller’s Top Prop™ line up is their second generation, advanced composite propeller now STC’d and available for Piper PA46 Matrix and Mirage piston-engine aircraft. The three-blade propellers offer significant weight savings, through a combination of carbon fiber and Kevlar® blades and its new lightweight aluminum hub. This combination saves nearly 11 pounds on the nose versus Hartzell’s first generation advanced composite propeller that is currently standard on these aircraft. A significant price reduction over the original composite propellers for the Piper Mirage is also a key driver of the offering.
Additionally, this is Hartzell’s first certification for the ASC-II approved for flight into known ice (FIKI) with its electrothermal de-ice system installed. Hartzell’s ASC-II advanced composite blades comprise a proprietary layup of carbon fiber and Kevlar with an integral stainless steel shank and co-molded electroformed nickel leading edges.
Given the location of the propeller, the weight reduction allows a seven-gallon increase in fuel capacity in the extreme-forward CG case, which adds up to 30 minutes of flight time at the economy cruise power setting, or approximately 90 miles further range at 18,000 ft.
Cruise performance was measured on-average nearly two knots faster than published POH speeds.
Flight testing also showed the use of the propeller reduced cylinder head temperatures (CHT) and oil temps in a Vy best-climb speed by approximately 6°F and high-altitude cruise oil temperature by approximately 15°F.
Beyond the performance and weight benefits, a key driver for the development of the ASC-II technology is to reduce cost, making advanced composite technology more affordable for general aviation aircraft. The list price for the new Top Prop is $24,000 for a 3-blade ASC-II propeller with de-ice and polished spinner, a $4500 price reduction – 16 per cent – from the first generation Piper Mirage composite propeller offered through the company’s Top Prop program.
Mike Trudeau, Hartzell Top Prop program manager, believes the new advanced structure composite propeller will prove particularly attractive to Mirage owners with 2-bladed aluminum Hartzell propellers. “The reduced price combined with benefits in performance, weight savings and lower noise are matching our predicted targets for our ASC-II product line.
“Top Props, whether composite or aluminum, are leading the constant speed propeller market by a wide and ever-increasing margin, thanks to customer feedback and intensive investments in R&D.”
Hartzell Propeller is widely recognized as the leader in advanced propeller design and manufacturing technology. The company has developed the next generation of propellers based upon innovative "blended airfoil" technology and is manufacturing these blades on revolutionary machining centers, or with its new ASC-II™ composite technology, to provide mission-optimized performance for its customers. Hartzell traces its beginnings in 1917 to a relationship with Orville Wright and was founded on the principle of "Built on Honor" – a tradition that continues today.