XTI Aircraft Company has selected GE’s CatalystTM engine as the core of its TriFan 600 hybrid-electric propulsion system. The two companies will work together to define a series hybrid architecture that will meet the TriFan performance requirements.
GE’s Catalyst is the first clean-sheet turboprop engine to hit the general aviation market in more than 30 years, enabling better performance through proven GE commercial technology. Operating as a series hybrid generator, GE’s Catalyst is designed to answer the propulsion and system needs of aircraft in the emerging megawatt hybrid propulsion market.
It currently has 98 patented technologies and is the first engine in its class to introduce two stages of variable stator vanes, cooled high-pressure turbine blades and more 3-D printed parts than any other commercial engine in history. It performs at an industry-best 16:1 overall pressure ratio. These key technologies enable GE’s Catalyst to extract more power at altitude, as well as excess thermodynamic power for growth in aircraft capability over the lifetime of a system.
Catalyst is designed to incorporate a Full Authority Digital Engine Control (FADEC) to allow simpler integration with the aircraft’s autopilot, flight control systems, and avionics, enabling seamless control for the pilot while protecting all engine limits in all phases of flight.
The TriFan 600 will have the speed, range and comfort of a business jet and the ability to take off and land vertically, like a helicopter. Using three ducted fans, the TriFan 600 lifts off vertically. Its two wing fans then rotate forward for a seamless transition to cruise speed and its initial climb. It will reach 30,000 feet and cruise to the destination as a highly efficient business aircraft. The TriFan 600 will incorporate advanced safety features, including autopilot and computerized controls for takeoff and landing.