Located in New Richmond, Wisconsin, Engineered Propulsion Systems, Inc. (EPS) is designing a new diesel engine that the company’s owners hope will change the course of general aviation by offering significantly better fuel efficiency than today’s gasoline-powered engines. Founded in 2006, the company today employs 17 full-time highly specialized staff members earning an average salary greater than $77,000. The company also employs two part-time workers, and five consultants.
Since its inception, EPS has been working on documenting and building a proof-of-concept engine, which has recently entered its flight testing phase. Early results are encouraging. “At a high power cruise of 263 horsepower, we’re burning 35 percent less fuel than the engines on the market today,” states EPS President and CEO Michael Fuchs. Aviation legend Dick Rutan commented after the company’s first flight that EPS has realized “a new paradigm in aviation!”
EPS was first certified as a qualified new business venture in 2010. Its certification has been renewed every year since then, and the company attracted over $3 million of qualified investments in 2013.
“QNBV certification has been a definite driver for our Wisconsin-based angel investors,” says Fuchs. “Living in Western Wisconsin, we are easily forgotten, but QNBV certification has allowed us to tell a compelling story for those that contemplate an investment in a startup company like ours.”
Fuchs sees the international attention EPS is getting as a testament to the potential growth for this grassroots Wisconsin company. “We are pleased to be part of a strategy that will allow our U.S.-based airplane company access to non-traditional customers in new markets. Our vision is to grow a high-technology manufacturing unit that develops our brand to signify a product of the highest quality and value.”
When Fuch’s vision is fully realized, he predicts EPS will “provide over 120 families in our local area a secure workplace for decades to come.”