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Difference between automotive and aircraft engines #4447053
07/01/17 10:18 PM
07/01/17 10:18 PM
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,673
Ottumwa, Iowa
jhellwig Offline OP
jhellwig  Offline OP
Joined: Jul 2013
Posts: 1,673
Ottumwa, Iowa
I got to woundering the other day when I was reading about aviation fuel why there is such a radical difference between aircraft engines and automobile engines.

I do understand that their are completely different demands on the engines in each applications and you need far more reliability for something carying people off the ground. Today's engines though seam to have a power to weight ratio and reliability that would make them viable aircraft engines. I can understand the need for more of a modular designe for ease of maintenance and preventative maintenance.

It seems like an alluminum block Ls engine could be a production aircraft engine. I wouldn't want one of these high strung 300hp 1L engines they use in small cars now though.


And now that I go looking I see that their are planes like this. Still and interesting topic of discussion though.

Last edited by jhellwig; 07/01/17 10:20 PM.

Sparks fly from my fingers.

1995 Chevy K2500 Suburban lt 5.7
2014 Toyota Sienna
1983 Chevy K5 350
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447081
07/01/17 11:10 PM
07/01/17 11:10 PM
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,161
USA
Reddy45 Offline
Reddy45  Offline
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,161
USA
I'm pretty sure I've heard of the GA types putting small block Chevy engines into their planes.

Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447088
07/01/17 11:26 PM
07/01/17 11:26 PM
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,161
USA
Reddy45 Offline
Reddy45  Offline
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 3,161
USA

Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447112
07/02/17 12:57 AM
07/02/17 12:57 AM
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 4,013
Central Wisconsin
dwendt44 Offline
dwendt44  Offline
Joined: May 2006
Posts: 4,013
Central Wisconsin
IIRC, Volkswagen modified a auto engine to work in a light aircraft.
Did very well, quieter, better fuel economy, etc....
This was same years ago.
Lycoming and Continental engines are basically old designs, with up-dates.


There's no such thing as:
Too big of a battery,
Too large of a gas tank,
or too loud of a horn,
or too bright headlights.
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447122
07/02/17 01:44 AM
07/02/17 01:44 AM
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 752
Specific Ocean
Kibitoshin Offline
Kibitoshin  Offline
Joined: Apr 2016
Posts: 752
Specific Ocean
Lexus 1UZ V8's were used as aviation engines. Probably due to it's inherent smoothness.


Shin Gekiretsu Shin'ou'hou
01 Toyota Tundra 2WD V8 4.7L - 170k mi
02 Chevy Silverado C1500 V8 5.3L 154k mi
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447134
07/02/17 03:06 AM
07/02/17 03:06 AM
Joined: Jun 2014
Posts: 1,749
Rijeka, EU
chrisri Offline
chrisri  Offline
Joined: Jun 2014
Posts: 1,749
Rijeka, EU
FIAT diesels are used in planes for their-wait now- reliability.
1.9,8v and 2.0,16v.


02 Nissan Terrano 2.7.TDi Motul 15w40
06 FIAT Stilo MW 1.9 Multijet SHU 5w40
07 Opel Vectra SW 1.9 CDTI 150 MST 5w40
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447142
07/02/17 03:57 AM
07/02/17 03:57 AM
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 7,485
S California
OneEyeJack Offline
OneEyeJack  Offline
Joined: Sep 2010
Posts: 7,485
S California
There are a lot of differences between airplane engines and automotive/light duty truck applications. Airplane engines experience a lot of run time at a constant speed like maybe a cross country diesel truck. Often the load varies but the engine still runs at the same RPM by using a constant speed prop. The old designs persist because of the cost of certifying a new one. People want reliability, fuel economy and reliability. Airplane engines have not only a different environment but they are attached to a delicate structure that does not suffer or dampen vibration very well. Overall the amount of care taken when rebuilding an airplane engine is fascinating to watch.

Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447153
07/02/17 04:44 AM
07/02/17 04:44 AM
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 93
wa
Exhaustgases Offline
Exhaustgases  Offline
Joined: Dec 2011
Posts: 93
wa
Average auto engine is running at maybe 20% of its rated power when traveling down the road. Aircraft engines are running maybe closer to 70% of rated power all through the flight. Kind of like marine engines. Lot more stress and thermal stress with the ac engines too. Most auto engines are very lacking in quality of construction as well, you may not think so until you are at 10,000 feet above a huge body of water with no land in sight when it stops.

Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: dwendt44] #4447182
07/02/17 06:56 AM
07/02/17 06:56 AM
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 16,012
OH
fdcg27 Offline
fdcg27  Offline
Joined: Sep 2009
Posts: 16,012
OH
Originally Posted By: dwendt44
IIRC, Volkswagen modified a auto engine to work in a light aircraft.
Did very well, quieter, better fuel economy, etc....
This was same years ago.
Lycoming and Continental engines are basically old designs, with up-dates.



Fornier powered gliders (a bit of an oxymoron, but this is a class of aircraft) used VW flat fours. Mira Slovak flew one of these across the Atlantic.
Porsche did build and certify a flat six. The only application I recall for this Porsche Flug Motor was the Mooney PFM. The engine has long been gone from the scene.
The thing about auto versus aircraft engines is that aircraft piston engines are typically direct drive. The prop is bolted directly to a flange on the crankshaft. Since the prop tips must not reach the speed of sound, which causes a huge loss in efficiency as well as a horrible increase in noise, aircraft engines make their rated power at around 2200 revs. They typically make around 30 bhp/liter and are a few times more costly than auto engines of similar output. Auto engines turn quite a bit faster, so some sort of reduction drive is required.
Also, aircraft engines have dual magneto ignition and can run on left, right or both with the engine's ignition being entirely independent of the aircraft electrical system. Fuel injection is common, but it's a simple and dead reliable mechanical system. Many aircraft still fly with carburetors. Turbocharging is also widely used, but not typically to boost output at sea level. There are some engines that always operate at greater then ambient pressure, but they are usually not long-lived in service. Forced induction is most commonly used to maintain output with altitude in aircraft applications.
All of the above applies to powerplants for type-certified aircraft. For a builder intending to license something in the experimental category, any engine can be used although most of the higher-end kit planes use real (and expensive) aircraft engines.


17 Forester 12K MSS 0W-20
12 Accord LX 92K PP 5W-20
09 Forester 95K M1HM 10W-30
01 Focus ZX3 118K PP 5W-20
96 Accord LX 104K T5 10W-30
95 318i
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447204
07/02/17 07:41 AM
07/02/17 07:41 AM
Joined: Jul 2015
Posts: 3,793
New England
madRiver Offline
madRiver  Offline
Joined: Jul 2015
Posts: 3,793
New England
Putting value on your life and others vs cheaping out.

Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447290
07/02/17 10:03 AM
07/02/17 10:03 AM
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,664
Charlotte, NC
Oldmoparguy1 Offline
Oldmoparguy1  Offline
Joined: Jan 2005
Posts: 5,664
Charlotte, NC
Check out This link for converting chevy corvair engines to aircraft use. Not much left of the original engine when your done.


A Randomly Selected Thought For The Day:
If Noah had used Zip, he could have used a smaller boat.
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447326
07/02/17 10:38 AM
07/02/17 10:38 AM
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 790
Romania
Andy636 Offline
Andy636  Offline
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 790
Romania
Actually what amazes me is how Rotax can make airplane engines but can't build a half **& decent motorcycle engine...

Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447375
07/02/17 11:48 AM
07/02/17 11:48 AM
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,528
Marshfield , MA
andyd Offline
andyd  Offline
Joined: Sep 2004
Posts: 7,528
Marshfield , MA
https://www.brooklandsmuseum.com/explore/our-collection/aircraft/vickers-vimy

Australia flight: 2 x 454 cubic inch (7.4litre) Chevrolet V8s in NSCAR racing trim
South Africa Flight: 2 x 5.4litre BMW M73 V12s producing 321bhp (240kw)
Atlantic flight: 2 x 495 cubic inch (8.1 litre) Orenda OE600 V8s producing 600bhp (450kW) maximum/500bhp (375kW) continuous


'16 Camry LE STP synth 0w20 and STP filter. the Fridge

1994 Ranger ,the Rat, 5w30 dino, STP filter

'16 Camry SE, Valvoline HM 0w20 and OEM filter
Thick oil is better grin2
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: OneEyeJack] #4447393
07/02/17 12:10 PM
07/02/17 12:10 PM
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 723
TX
maximus Offline
maximus  Offline
Joined: Jan 2008
Posts: 723
TX
Cessna just got their JT-A 172 approved by the FAA and the European equivalent. It's a 172 that uses 155 HP turbo diesel engine. It almost doubles the range of the 172 and this variant uses less expensive(than AVGAS) JET-A. Hopefully it will sell well and set a new precedent. I can see the big Embry-Riddle and UND types ordering these maybe. We're getting into the half million dollar range...for a 172.


2011 Sonata GLS.
Re: Difference between automotive and aircraft engines [Re: jhellwig] #4447401
07/02/17 12:21 PM
07/02/17 12:21 PM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 7,002
Michigan
A_Harman Offline
A_Harman  Offline
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 7,002
Michigan
Certification costs of new engines are what is killing innovation in aircraft engine design. I've run up against this a couple of times. I used to work at John Deere Rotary Engine Division, back in the late '80's. We were developing a 2-rotor, 3.4L engine for general aviation use. It was turbocharged, direct-injected, stratified-charge and the primary fuel was to be Jet A. Working in conjunction with Avco Lycoming, the engine was designed and prototypes were in progress when management pulled the plug on the project, citing the certification costs and product liability concerns. One engine was completed and run in my test cell for a couple of months, basically to prove it could make rated power.

Then again in the early 90's, I interviewed for a job at Teledyne Continental, where they were working on a 2-stroke diesel, basically using a 53-series Detroit Diesel cylinder design. The chief project engineer took me on a tour of the plant, where he told me that 50% of the volume going through the shop were remanufactured engines. This did not give me a lot of confidence in the future of the business. I stayed where I was at.


1985 Z51 Corvette track car
2002 Camaro Z28 LS1/6-speed
2001 Dodge Ram 2500 diesel
1972 GMC 1500 shortbed project truck
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