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Hovercraft FAQ

Question: What types of engines are used on a hovercraft?

Hovercrafts use many different types of engines depending on the application. Human powered craft obviously use a person as the engine. Small remote control model and toy hovercrat us small hobby motor.

Most hovercraft use two engines. One is used to lift the craft and the other engine is used for thrust. Some smaller craft use a single engine for both lift and thrust.

Large commercial craft may use as many as 6 or 8 engines for power
of the lift and thrust systems.
gas turbine.

Engine Types

A hovercraft can use almost any type of engine. Hovercraft engines are engines that have a lighter weight and they have a higher weight to power ratio.

One of the best engine types for most craft is the 2-stroke engine, such as those made by rotax. 2-stroke snowmobile engines are also used. Unfortunately these engines can be noisy and difficult to operate. They typically run at much higher RPM so a reduction system is employed to run the propellor of fan at a slower speed.

Most homebuilt craft use the heavier but simpler avier 4-
stroke engines. These engines have a lower power to weight ratio, but they are more readily available and they are easier to operate and maintian.They run at lower RPM so they don't need complicated belts or gear to connect to the propellor ro fan.

Larger homebuilt and some commercial hovercraft sometimes use small automobile engines. Some engines used are the Subaru E81 and the Honda.

Large military craft will sometimes use jet turbine engines or large diesel engines.

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