We would like to inform you about the current status and progress of developments regarding the retrofitting of gliders with jet engines.
The LS4 Jet has been able to position itself on the market, is well received and we are getting extremely positive feedback:
In order to evaluate further conversion possibilities for gliders with our jet engine, we have carried out a market analysis, resulting in following conclusion: Currently, the ASW 27 & ASG 29 from Alexander Schleicher, as well as the Rolladen-Schneider LS6 & LS8 are particularly suitable. Both types (groups) offer special potential to significantly increase the usability with an engine. In addition, a weight increase of approx. 30kg (fully fueled!) is justifiable for both aircraft, so that especially the weak-weather performance is maintained.
In the medium term, the aim is to offer an STC-approved propulsion system for all three types as a retrofit solution for existing gliders.
However, both gliders have their own challenges in detail, which make retrofitting difficult. With LS6 & LS8 an increase in the mass of the non-lifting parts is unavoidable. We are currently working on this, not only for these two types, but also on a general solution for other gliders. This is a basic prerequisite for the implementation of the project and will probably also lead to the cockpit load being raised back to the delivery condition.
Even though the LS6/8 fuselages are quite different, the jet system of the LS4 fits without major changes.
The ASW 27 ASG 29 offers less difficulties in terms of weight, but the fuselage is very narrow. What is good for the flight performance brings great challenges for the installation of an engine, its kinematic mechanism, and tank. Here too, we are working on solutions and, as you can see, the work is not hopeless:
A completely new lifting mechanism and tank system is being developed for the ASW 27 & ASG 29.
Timing is always difficult and we overran it several times during the certification of the LS4 propulsion system. However, we have learned from this to be realistic about this type of project. In the coming months we will work on solutions for the basic problems mentioned and come up with a concrete schedule in summer 2023.