Currawong Engineering and VP Racing Fuels Inc. have combined their expertise in combustion engine production and Fuel Technology® to provide a cutting-edge product specially developed for the UAV industry. Together with the Cortex Hybrid engine solution, Currawong and VP Racing were able to develop UMAN-VP4F heavy fuel which is based on Isopar but treated, tested and controlled to the same level as high-performance racing fuels.

“I have been very impressed with how cleanly and smoothly our engines run with UMAN. It is fantastic to have this safe fuel available designed specifically to work with small spark ignited engines without all the compromises of JP5 and JP8. Our high-pressure fuel system is a perfect match.” Gavin Brett, CEO of Currawong Engineering.

The UMAN fuel was developed to provide engine longevity combined with consistent predictable performance in the field.” James Harlow, Director at VP Racing Fuels Inc.

Spark ignited heavy fuel engines for UAVs commonly operate on fuels such as JP-5 and JP-8. These kerosene-based fuels are excellent for gas-turbine engines which have no octane requirement but are not as ideal in piston engines where octane becomes important. Currawong has shown that UMAN-VP4F works well as a spark-ignited fuel in the Corvid-50 engine and burns with very clean combustion. Power output of the engine is comparable to that of petrol.

James Harlow, Director at VP Racing Inc., explains the challenges that VP Racing Inc. faced during development; “In developing the UMAN-VP4F we had several challenges. The first challenge was keeping the flash above 60C while maximizing the octane needed for the engines. Another challenge was finding a consistent feedstock that would maintain repeatable performance in the field. The final challenge was making sure the oil chosen lubricated the engine properly while not adding deposits in the combustion chambers or exhaust ports. We are very happy with the final product and look forward to continued efforts to improve the fuel with more updates from field operations.”

“As a low volatility fuel, UMAN-VP4F provides increased safety to users, it also created difficulty with combustion. Currawong overcame this through the use of our high-pressure Triplex pump and specially designed injection system.”  – Lead Engineer on Cortex Hybrid Engine Product Development.

Currawong and VP Racing Inc. look forward to seeing further field tests of the innovative new fuel through the use of the Cortex Hybrid Engine in UAV applications. Currawong seeks to see the fuel utilised in Naval applications, its low volatility making it a suitable heavy fuel to be stored on Naval ships.

About Currawong

Currawong Engineering is well known for its class leading range of Velocity ESC motor controllers and Corvid engines. Currawong is dedicated to repeatable, expert manufacture of all products providing customers with the utmost confidence in their performance and durability. The products can be found locally and internationally, with a number of Defence Primes utilising them in current programs.

About VP Racing Fuels

VP Racing Fuels is best known as the World Leader in Fuel Technology®, fuelling champions in virtually every form of motorsport on land, sea, and air since 1975. The company operates internationally, supplying race fuels, lubricants, consumer small engine fuels, automotive additives, and licensed retail fuel stations. VP is the Official Racing Fuel of more than 60 sponsored series and sanctioning bodies.


 Contact VP Racing Fuels