January 2014

Experimenter is a magazine created by EAA for people who build airplanes. We will report on amateur-built aircraft as well as ultralights and other light aircraft.

Issue link: http://experimenter.epubxp.com/i/247918

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Page 33 of 38

UNDER THE COWL A 120-hp Turbo Kit for the Rotax 912 A European option BY MARINO BORIC IN THE PAST TWO YEARS, several manufacturers have shown up on the European engine market with new engines and Rotax 912 engine tuning kits. For most aircraft owners, new engines are interesting news, but experimental and experimental light-sport aircraft owners don't always need a new engine. An inexpensive tuning kit for the existing engine might provide an alternative. If there is an 80-hp Rotax 912 engine under the cowl, there are several tuning options. The solution offered by the Italian company Marc Ingegno seems to be an interesting one; it promises 40 additional horsepower for $4,800 U.S. (3,600 euros). The idea of squeezing additional power out of an existing four-stroke engine with the addition of a supercharger or turbocharger is nothing new. Almost all modern diesel-cycle automotive engines and an increasing number of new gasoline engines on the market are turbocharged nowadays. Modern gasoline engines are increasingly under "pressure," too, mostly because of the downsizing process. Manufacturers are downsizing existing, big displacement engines, lowering the engine displacement and number of cylinders with the result that the engines are sub- 34 Vol.3 No.1 / January 2014 jected to higher working pressure and develop more power with less cylinders, less weight, and smaller volumetric displacement. One way to achieve this is the reintroduction of turbocharging. In aviation, turbocharging or forced induction makes more sense simply because the power of our engines decreases dramatically with altitude since air density drops. Lower air density means less oxygen; so less fuel can be burned in the engine, and the engine develops less power. This power loss can be compensated by the addition of a turbocharger. While this may sound easy, in reality it is not, because of the legal problems (warranty loss, insurance) that make the installation of a self-developed turbocharger kit for a private person not feasible. In Europe, there are several companies that are selling turbo kits for the Rotax 912 engine; that is usually the only viable solution for higher-power engines in experimental aircraft or for experimentals based on LSA (E-LSA). The general problem is that most of those turbo kits are produced in very limited quantities and installed in even less aircraft. Most of those kits demand considerable work for proper installation, and the Photography courtesy of Marino Boric

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