Digital Twin Feature to Offer Lucrative Opportunities to Aircraft Turboprop Propeller System Manufacturers

Aircraft Turboprop Propeller System Market

Cost-effective maintenance is one of the main factor driving the global market for aircraft turboprop propeller system. This product is preferred over turbojet engines due to advantages that it holds such as use of minimal moving parts and simple design. At present, manufacturers are working on improving the blade designs, which would help them in achieving better fuel efficiency.

Companies namely GE Aviation, AVIA PROPELLER, Hartzell Propeller, Safran Group, MT-Propeller Entwicklung GmbH, Dowty Propellers and Aerosila amongst others will witness a significant growth globally. Leading companies are focusing on marketing plans such as product developments and expanding their product portfolio. 

GE Aviation Names Its ATP Engine

GE Aviation has declared official name for their ATP (Advanced Turboprop) engine. The engine is now named as GE Catalyst™. This engine helps in delivering better performance via advanced technology, eases flying experience thereby lessening pilot workload and creates high standard services. Mainly, GE Catalyst™ is beneficial for airframers, pilots and operators in B&GA (Business and General Aviation).

GE Catalyst™ engine is regarded as a new clean-sheet engine. It uses latest technologies from the larger engines of GE Aviation with billions of service hours. This is the first engine that has two stages of flexible stator vanes along with air-conditioned intensely-pressure turbine blades. Mainly, it performs at industry-best 16:1 total pressure ratio, which helps the engine to attain nearly 20% lower fuel burn as well as 10% higher cruise power, in comparison to other company offerings. In a time span of 4,000hrs, GE Catalyst™ engine delivers 33% more time between the services, compared to its leading competitors. 

New Manufacturing Techniques by GE Aviation

GE Aviation has integrated new manufacturing methods such as 3D printing, for better and advanced component designs and to reduce part counts. According to current scenario, nearly 855 traditionally made parts have been decreased to 12 additive parts. However, this reduction in complexity helps in accelerating production. Also, it helps in reducing weight and fuel burn as well as increases durability, thereby leaving few tighter tolerances and seams. Additive components help in reducing the weight of GE Catalyst™ by nearly 5% by providing 1% improvement in SFC (specific fuel consumption).

GE Catalyst™ is developed as an alternative to conventional multi-lever control systems and turboprop hydro-mechanical. GE Aviation has leveraged its proficiency in controls and integration on the engine, for developing a single-lever controller, which would deliver jet-like experience. This ultimately reduces workload of the pilot, thereby maximizing the performance without outdoing limitations of the engine. Therefore, the pilot looks forward in up taking higher-level tasks, as this system enables the pilot in easy fly rather than deliberately adjusting and monitoring the engine every time.

The engine holds additional sensors, which helps in capturing part-level performance features for OEM requirements. The digital control system in GE Catalyst™ helps the consumer in acquiring knowledge regarding the overall performance of the aircraft, even during the fly. There is cloud-based data that is collected and transmitted to develop a virtual simulation or digital twin. No civilian turboprop uses digital twin and is only incorporated in GE Catalyst™. This digital twin mainly helps in reducing the ownership costs.

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By Nikhil Kaitwade

With over 8 years of experience in market research and consulting industry, Nikhil has worked on more than 250 research assignments pertaining to chemicals, materials and energy sector. He has worked directly with about 35 reputed companies as lead consultant for plant expansion, product positioning, capacity factor analysis, new market/segment exploration, export market opportunity evaluation and sourcing strategies.

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