Propeller Provides Additional Three Knots Cruise Performance
PIQUA, Ohio – April 11, 2000 — Hartzell Propeller Inc., announced today that its Lightweight Turbine series four-bladed propeller system has been selected for installation on the Piper Malibu Meridian and has successfully completed flight testing required for its certification. The Hartzell propeller selected is 82.5-inches in diameter and features feathering and reversing capability. Flight testing of this propeller demonstrated an additional three knots in cruise performance over the previously selected three-bladed propeller.
During the Meridian development program Piper found that it could increase the power ratings of its Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-42A turbo-prop engine. Take-off power was increased from 400 shp to 500 shp and the continuous power rating jumped from 350 shp to 400 shp. These increases called for additional propeller blade area to efficiently convert the added power into thrust. Since the aircraft design limited the propeller diameter to 82.5 inches, adding a blade was the most effective solution. Not only did this new design enhance cruise speed, it also significantly improved low end thrust resulting in reduced take-off distance and an increased rate of climb. Interior noise and vibration levels will also benefit from the change to the four-bladed propeller.
The New Piper Aircraft made history in August 1998, with the flight of its new
single-engine turboprop Malibu Meridian, marking Piper’s return to the realm of turboprop-powered aircraft. The Meridian is expected to be certified by mid-2000.
Hartzell Lightweight Turbine series propellers are available for small to mid-range turboprops up to 1650 horsepower. They feature a split aluminum hub with an internal pitch change mechanism. Other design options include:
· Feathering or Feathering and Reversing
· Aluminum or Composite Blades
· Aerobatic capability