PERFORMANCE BEYOND LIMITS
PERFORMANCE BEYOND LIMITS
30+ years of expirience in designing multi fuel engines
The management of 3W International GmbH looks back contentedly at this year`s participation at the Xponential 2016 in New Orleans. Aside from standard engines, the German engine manufacturer presented its complete drive concept to the North American specialist audience. In discussions with interested customers, one topic stood out: Time between overhauling (TBO).
"Our complete drive concept was well received by the visitors", Karsten Schudt, Managing Director of 3W International GmbH, confirmed. Aside from the small 1-cylinder engine 3W-28i HFE FI, the same engine was presented as complete drive system inclusive of all auxiliary systems. "This comparison illustrates what our development team, which boasts more than 30 years`experience, can produce for our customers", Schudt added. 3W International offers this concept for all Heavy Fuel (HF) and petrol engines.
In view of these development options, very concrete project discussions were conducted at the exhibition stand of 3W International. "We were able to show our interlocutors what our engineering and development capacities are. It was therefore only logical that customers discussed real project implementations with us," as Schudt reviewed. Time and again, the discussions returned to the topic TBO.
3W International specifies TBOs of up to 600 - 1000 hours maximum, depending on the conditions of use and the maintenance of the engine. In this context, the number of hours will depend on the areas of use and the RPM range. "If these engines are driven at moderate speeds and are serviced at regular intervals, these maximum performances are possible. Naturally, the time will be reduced if the engine is used in dusty desert climates or at permanent RPM range," as Schudt confirms.
However, the great demand for the TBOs to be reached also shows that the topic of efficiency is increasingly moving into the focus of UAV manufacturers and their customers. If TBOs are low, engine replacements and overhauls become necessary at short intervals. This comes with a significant disadvantage for both military and civil uses: costs increase. "Engines that lie idly at the workshop waiting to be overhauled fail to earn money, cannot be used in sensitive security missions and are also not available as replacement engines. Thus, they are completely unusable for the user at that moment," as Schudt emphasizes.
For more than 30 years, the family business has designed and manufactured internal combustion engines in the range between 2 and 62 PS. The company had its origins in model aircraft for which 3W developed the first internal engines. As model aircraft flying is a cost-intensive hobby, customers were interested in engine units offering a long service life early on. By now, this interest has also become a main concern for many civil, commercial and military users.
Ultimately, the TBO performance of the engines is an economic factor as high stocks of replacement engines and short overhaul intervals tie up invested capital. One can therefore expect that the TBO will play an increasingly important role for UAV manufacturers and their end customers in future as well. "I believe that we demonstrate with our engine quality what is technologically possible. Our customers benefit in that they obtain top-notch engines that secure their missions and make them successful", as Schudt concludes.
3W 28 Xi
3W International will attend ILA Berlin Air Show from June 1 to 2, 2016.
For individual meetings, please contact the German headquarter.
German engine manufacturer 3W International is introducing its design for complete propulsion systems for the first time at the leading trade show in New Orleans. Moreover options will be introduced concerning special mounting plates for mounting different engines on the same engine chassis or the identical firewall.
"The market is demanding complete engine systems and individual solutions that nonetheless permit a high degree of flexibility", summarizes Karsten Schudt, managing director of 3W International, when asked about the results of the latest customer meetings. "That means customers are increasingly looking for engines with all of the auxiliary systems such as generators, starters, air-duct systems, engine suspensions, and silencer systems", continues Schudt. 3W International will consequently exhibit a complete propulsion system for illustrative purposes at the exhibit stand.
"We can deliver our engines to our customers ready for use. That means the engines are completely equipped and delivered with ECU, silencer, starter, generator, engine mount, and air-duct systems. We can also deliver the propeller if the customer so desires. The propulsion systems leave our factory in Hesse tested and are therefore "ready to use". The customer himself basically has to complete only three tasks: unpack, install, and take wing", says Schudt descriptively of 3W International`s complete-propulsion concept. Here every propulsion system is tailored to the customeras desires and needs.
"So we`ve got to work very closely together with our customers. This means that we must be involved in UAV development early in the project phase" Schudt clarifies. Because even if the customer decides in favour of a standard flight body, the application`s take-off weight and the flight performance depend upon the UAV`s application and performance targets. Engines featuring various performance capabilities, which are installed differently due to their weight and side, are therefore in part necessary with the same flight body. "So we`ve got to be involved early on in the project, because the entire propulsion system is tailored to the flight body and the customer`s wishes", explains Schudt.
This concept has been introduced to date only to customers in Europe and Asia. The response was quite positive, and the first orders were placed. It`s because the benefits are clear to see: In such a co-operation the propulsion system is optimally aligned with the aircraft but also with the intended use, and the customer can draw upon 3W International`s expertise and years of experience. "In this case the 30-plus years of experience of our developers from model building are paying off, because we know from that how we put engines, auxiliary systems, and the aircraft together into a unit that perfectly satisfies the customer`s needs", Schudt makes clear.
An additional possibility of the use of different engine types is specially developed engine support systems, which enable different engines to be mounted on one and the same engine chassis or on a firewall. "Some of our customers use one and the same UAV type for different application purposes. In that connection it happens that engines with different performance parameters also have to be used", explains Schudt. Different engines can in part be fastened thanks to the special mounting systems. Different engine types can thereby be used in the same flight body without big development projects.
"We repeatedly encounter great interest with these simple solutions in customer meetings. That shows us that the market is also increasingly moving in a field where increased efficiency, cost savings, and short development cycles are coming to the fore with the development of UAVs. Financial indicators and core data are becoming increasingly important when it comes to the development, construction, and use of UAVs. Our flexible modular-design system allows these individual customer needs to be optimally met. So 3W International will also continue to work on the concepts that accompany and support these developments on the customer side", says Schudt in summary.
3W International is located in hall 1, booth 567 at AUVSI.