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Thermawing

Thermawing got good reviews from AviationConsumer. Why did Cessna not certify Cessna TTX not with Thermawing and went instead with nasty and expensive TKS fluid?

Last Edited by Lucius at 20 Jan 05:46

Post moved to existing thread of identical name.

I knew a TTX dealer in the early days and his comment was that it was a “homebuilt” system, with local hot spots burning out. It was fixed later but by then Cessna dropped it.

TKS is very effective but obviously has other issues like endurance. It is also really messy.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Does Thermawing still exist?
I could not find a product page on manufacturer’s website.

EGTR

What planes was it available on? TTX was one.

Administrator
Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Kelly owns the STC, but IIRC, recently they may have sold it to another company.

http://www.kellyaerospace.com/about_KATS.html

FAA A&P/IA
LFPN

What are the issues with Thermawing?

I don’t know much about specific problems but first thing that comes to my mind is faulty alternator (or losing the engine). If it’s SEP you lose deicing instantly because no battery can be backup fot such high consumption. Unlike that TKS has backup battery for the pumps even in MEP aircrafts.

LDZA LDVA, Croatia

How often does an alternator fail. Given that it has been reported that Thermawing works well, improving the alternator reliability should be a small problem to solve. There must be more to it. @Alexis: My question is related to used planes that are equipped with it. Thank you.

From what I can recollect when the Columbias were first to be equipped with Thermawing, and then later went to TKS:

  • when the aircraft was sold, the Thermawing wasn’t ready / available, so Columbia agreed to fit it later (it was included in the price of that aircraft)
  • later, a Thermawing equipped Columbia caught fire. While this was ultimately traced back to a botched installation (the lighting protection mesh wasn’t cut back sufficiently, leading to a short circuit), this incident damaged the reputation and held things back further while this was being investigated
  • Columbia Aircraft then offered TKS as an alternative, at the same price, and many owners went for that
  • when Cessna took them over, they dropped Thermawing, but honoured the Columbia TKS installation

So between a reputational problem with its launch aircraft, conservative pilots and Cessna, it didn’t make it,

Last Edited by Cobalt at 27 Jan 20:57
Biggin Hill

Emir wrote:

Unlike that TKS has backup battery for the pumps even in MEP aircrafts.

Where did you get that ? I have NEVER seen a dedicated back-up battery for the TKS system.

FAA A&P/IA
LFPN
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