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Engine INSTallation And INtegration

Project description

Innovative piston engine for affordable fuel solutions

Traditional general aviation aircraft heavily rely on avgas fuel, resulting in high costs due to limited production and compatibility constraints with Continental or Lycoming engines. The EU-funded EINSTAIN project will offer a game-changing solution by introducing an innovative compression ignition piston engine. This ground-breaking technology allows for a remarkable 50 % reduction in fuel consumption, leading to significant cost savings. By adapting the engine to use kerosene or jet fuels, the project aims to further reduce prices, making aviation more accessible and cost-effective. With plans to demonstrate its efficiency, EINSTAIN is set to transform the future of general aviation.


"Nowadays, almost all General Aviation piston-powered aircrafts are powered by Avgas fuel. For decades, piston engines like Lycoming and Continental were allowed to burn only this type of fuel, which is characterized by high-octane values, very low vapor pressure indexes and high costs because of its poor production quantity, tracked and certified production and high performances.

The “compression ignition” engine can provide a fuel consumption reduction from 30% to 50% compared to Avgas engine. An additional benefit of the replacement of Avgas piston engine with a diesel engine is obtained due to the reduced fuel price.

This “compression ignition” piston engines are able and certified to operate with kerosene and/or Jet fuels, so their use is justified in areas, such as Europe, Africa, Russia, China and many others, where aviation gasoline (Avgas, also known as 100LL) cost is significantly higher than jet fuels.

Therefore the objective of this project is to demonstrate the feasibility of an efficient “diesel” engine installation on a FAR/EASA Part23, 9 to 11 seats twin engine aircraft configuration and reduce as much as possible the related increase in drag, respect to a conventional engine, by using Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) in the design phase.

In order to achieve this goal the SR460, a six-cylinders, air/oil-cooled turbo-diesel engine produced by SMA, will be used as reference and installed on the TECNAM P2012 TRAVELLER aircraft. The main advantages are reported as following:

• The average fuel consumption will be of around 45kg/hr/engine against an average of 130kg/hr of a turboprop engine;
• P2012 will be the first twin engine aircraft available in both ""Avgas"" and ""kerosene"" capable variants;

• P2012 with SR460 will have a very competitive acquisition cost, comparable to the same-passengers’ capability of the single engine turboprop.



Net EU contribution
€ 939 400,00

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The organization defined itself as SME (small and medium-sized enterprise) at the time the Grant Agreement was signed.

Sud Campania Napoli
Activity type
Private for-profit entities (excluding Higher or Secondary Education Establishments)
Total cost
€ 1 342 000,00

Participants (1)