Most people probably don't know that aircraft driven by Team RV, which performed aerobatics at this weekend's Lycoming County Rotary Clubs Festival, were powered by engines manufactured by a local company.
Lycoming Engines, Williamsport, has been producing the 12 RV-series of engines since 1967.
The design of the engines are what make it possible for the aircraft to perform some of their stunts, according to Steve Palmatier, director of product support and customer service, Lycoming Engines.
Team RV leader Mike Stewart stands next to an engine from Lycoming Engines.
"It has an inverted oil system that allows the engine to maintain oil pressure," he said.
In other words, the engine won't fail when the plane flies upside down or performs other air stunts.
"They are pushed absolutely to their limits," said Kristen Sampson, director of marketing. "It speaks to their reliability."
Lycoming Engines is the only manufacturer of the RV-series which includes the IO-360, IO-390, IO-320, and IO-540 models.
Lycoming Engines has sold more than 1,200 aerobatic engines in the last 10 years.
Mike Stewart, Team RV leader, noted that the planes need a reliable engine, especially given the nature of their flights.
"We can't settle for anything less," he said. "We have to have the best there is."
Team RV flies 15 air shows a year, compiling more than 100,000 miles in shows and practices.
The RV-series aircraft are described as nimble, low-wing monoplanes that reach speeds of more than 200 mph.
Many of the planes are built by team members.
But it's the engines, built right in a Williamsport plant, that makes them fly at their best.
"Team RV is fast becoming well known as one of the best air show acts in the world," Stewart said, "and we rely on Lycoming engines to get us there."