DeltaHawk Engine Certification Looming (Again)

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DeltaHawk has had a moving target for certification of its diesel aviation engine since at least 2006 but says its new target of 2011 is backed by millions in investor capital and two leases covering 70,000 square feet of space. The company says major investors began stepping up in March of last year and brought millions of dollars to the table. The newly announced leases are for facilities at John H Batten Field, Wis., where the company will house its production plant and headquarters. That arrangement may hinge on incentive deals with the city of Racine and might be approved as early as Thursday evening (a mayoral press conference has already scheduled for 5 p.m.). If approved, DeltaHawk says it would get started with engine production even before certification. The company says it is targeting general aviation, military drone markets and the generator industry, and aims to sell more than 900 engines by its third year in production.

A certified engine and large-scale success in the market would complete a long journey for the company. It was ten years ago that DeltaHawk first thought it would soon bring its engines to market, but years of challenges brought years of setbacks to the project. DeltaHawk has only recently grown from seven employees (last year) to its current group of 23. Among those hires, the company has created a management team and says it plans to soon add up to 20 additional workers to help fill standing paid orders for about 50 engines. And for the other 850, time will tell.

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