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A look behind the scenes of ULPower: testing the UL520i

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The last two years, our R&D staff did a huge job developing the new range of 6 cylinder engines. After designing the engines and shaping the first proof of concept back in 2011, they built the first prototype in Spring 2012.

The last couple of months we received a lot of questions from people who wondered about the progress of the new engine range. We challenged their patience telling we were spending a lot of time testing the UL520 engines extensively.

Now, the first batch of UL520i and UL520iS engines are nearly ready to be shipped to their new owners.

But what exactly should you imagine at all the tests we’ve done. Well, it’s not a secret, we are happy to share the procedure and the results with you.

The endurance tests followed the CS-E 440 norm. This is the report:

Endurance Test conform CS-E 440
Engine: UL520i (6 cylinder, 180 hp)
Propeller: Airmaster AP430CTF-SNR64ZN serial #612
Fuel: mogas 95 octane RON
Date: August 2012
1. Configuration 
Engine is fixed on the trailer and equipped with a constant speed prop Airmaster
(picture 1 in annex)
The prop is set to a fixed pitch : full throttle = 2810 Rpm.
2. Logged parameter
Following parameters are measured and continuously logged using program log works 3 (picture 2 in annex):
-         atmospheric pressure
-         voltage
-         air inlet temp
-         4x CHT (cyl 1; cyl 2; cyl 4; cyl 5)
-         4x EGT
-         fuel pressure
-         oil pressure
-         oil temperature
-         Rpm
-         Lambda
-         MAP
-         Throttle position
3. Unlogged parameters
The torque is measured with a load cell “Metil + micra M” ( picture 3  in annex). However this is not logged.
Experience showed that the read-out is not correct comparing tests on the dyno: because of vibrations and different explosions in the engine, the torque output is not constant. This creates a false read-out.
However, the purpose of this test is to find out if during the 150 hr test, the output power from the engine remains constant.
4. Test procedure
-         conform CS-E 440
-         during the test, several “engine stops” were generated to allow the “hot start” test
-         during the test, several times the engine run at idle (± 900 Rpm) for a moment to find out if the oil pressure stay above minimum
-         daily inspections:
  • oil level
  • wiring connections
  • propeller fixing bolts torque
  • safety facilities
-         daily report (loggings) and a written note
-         regular registration of the torque
5. Summary
-         during 18 days the UL520i ran for a total time of 145 Hr 30 min
-         total fuel consumption: 4.674,00 liter (mogas 95 octane RON)
-         number of cold starts: 36
-         number of hot starts: 38
-         total oil consumption: 0,3 liter
-         after the test (no adjustments between) all tappet clearance were within limits
-         except some “start up” problems with connections, sensors and a bad regulator, no repairs were necessary
-         engine torque (related to Rpm) stay ± constant during the whole test
6. Inspection
After the test we disassembled the engine completely:
-         crankshaft and bearings: no abnormal use
-         camshaft and bearings: no abnormal use
-         cam followers and push rods: no abnormal use
-         con rods and bearings: no abnormal use
-         pistons and piston rings: no abnormal use
-         cylinders: no abnormal use
-         cylinder heads, valves, rocker arms: no abnormal use
-         oil pump and filter: no abnormal use
7. Conclusion
-         The UL520i passed successful the endurance test conform CS-E 440.
-         As during this test, we passed all possible Rpm settings, we can conclude that even the detonation test conform CS-E 360 is supposed to be successful.

The results were logged on a daily basis.

Any further questions, remarks, suggestions,…? Just let us know!


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