A greener de-icer soon to debut

NBAA Convention News » 2009
October 14, 2009, 5:48 AM

One of the founders and innovators of the TKS anti-icing system plans to launch the world’s first environmentally friendly anti-icing fluid called TKS Sustain, based on propane diol rather than the more traditional ethylene glycol. Kilfrost, exhibiting here at Booth No. 5513, has submitted the product for certification and expects to gain approval to market it this coming winter.

Kilfrost–the “K” in “TKS”–developed the original in-flight ice protection system alongside Tecalemit and Sheepridge Stokes at the instigation of the UK government in 1942. “It was originally designed to meet the operational needs of allied aircraft flying during winter conditions,” explained Patrick Strasburger, Kilfrost’s senior vice president for the Americas. “The system was subsequently updated many times for use in the general aviation and business jet communities, from the original HS125 to the Hawker 850XP.” Many other aircraft continue to use the TKS “weeping wing” anti-icing system. It was recently certified for the Cirrus SR-22 piston single and Cessna’s Caravan turboprop single, the OEM having switched to TKS from the de-icer boot system that was installed on the original Caravan.

TKS Sustain is not only more environmentally friendly, according to the company, but also offers better performance than the existing fluids, with a lower freezing point depression, lower foaming action, no flammability, low toxicity and no smell. TKS is working with the FAA to certify Sustain, which is a unique move because previous fluids had been automatically certified as part of entire TKS systems approved on aircraft.

TKS says it remains at the forefront of the fluid technology, working closely with the FAA to ensure its products meet or exceed regulatory requirements, including the military specification 406B. Kilfrost offers a full range of TKS fluids, including R328 and TKS80. 

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