Textron Aviation this week announced it had conducted an engine run in the Beechcraft Denali prototype for the first time, paving the way for the type's first flight later this year.
The engine, a 1300-shp GE Catalyst turbo-prop, was put through 2450 hours of testing before being installed in the Denali.
"These successful engine runs are a significant step toward the upcoming inaugural flight for the Beechcraft Denali, and they are a testament to the determination and collaboration from both the Textron Aviation and GE Aviation teams,” said Chris Hearne, Textron senior vice president, Engineering.
“The Denali features a technologically advanced engine that burns less fuel. It has an intuitive avionics suite that eases pilot workload and boasts the most spacious cabin in its segment. We are excited to get this aircraft into the hands of our eager customers.”
One example of GE Aviation’s FADEC Catalyst engine is currently being prepared for a first flight on a King Air test bed. The Catalyst engine can burn sustainable aviation fuel, which results in lower emissions, and GE says the fuel consumption is lower than existing comparable powerplants.
The Denali will be fitted with a McCauley 2.667-metre diameter composite, five-blade, constant speed propeller, which is full feathering with reversible pitch and ice protection. This is a new unit that is still in the testing phase.
Two other Denali test airframes are in development and Textron says it is on target for certification in 2023.