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May 25, 2010
Centurion Comment on FAA Carbon Monoxide SAIB
FAA recommends muffler replacement – CENTURION Engines are not affected
Lichtenstein – On May 7, 2010 the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) published a Special Airworthiness Information Bulletin (SAIB) regarding engine exhaust systems. They conducted a research that focuses on carbon monoxide (CO) safety issues as they apply to general aviation products. They found that the muffler system was the top source of CO leakage causing accidents related to CO poisoning. According to this the FAA recommends replacing the mufflers on reciprocating engine-powered airplanes with mufflers having an operation time of more than 1,000 hours. This recommendation is not mandatory and only N-registered airplanes are affected. In this respect, Centurion clarifies that Centurion engines are not affected by this recommendation. Reciprocating engines with a diesel combustion process do produce hardly any Carbon Monoxide due to the fact that the combustion always runs leanly. The FAA has been informed about this fact accordingly by Centurion and will include a note within the next revision of the SAIB.
In 2007 the Swiss Federal Office of Civil Aviation (FOCA) initiated a research program with a focus on aircraft engine emissions and measured emissions on several reciprocating aircraft engine types, including Centurion aircraft engines (TC number TAE-125). They found out that e.g. a Lycoming O-360 is producing 6,743 g/kg of CO per hour in cruise power setting while the Centurion engine only produces 91 g/kg of CO per hour in cruise power setting. This is less than 1.5 percent. Furthermore the heating system of all Centurion installations does use a heat exchanger of the liquid cooling system to heat up fresh air. In Centurion installations exhaust gas is not used to heat up fresh air. Therefore the risk that the remaining CO enters into the cabin is very low. In accordance with our experience exhaust pipes and mufflers in Centurion installations do not show any severe corrosion after 1,000 hours. In fact, most parts are made from non-corrosive materials.