OSHKOSH, Wisc. - Piper Aircraft and Hartzell Propeller have announced collaboration on the certification of a five-bladed composite propeller for the Piper Meridian and M500 through a Supplemental Type Certificate ("STC"). Achievement of the STC for both Piper products is anticipated by the end of fourth quarter this year. "The Hartzell Propeller five-bladed prop was designed with the intention of enhancing flight performance," said Drew McEwen, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Piper Aircraft. "This composite prop will help increase climb rate and decrease noise, with the secondary benefit of elevating ramp aesthetics. It is a win, win, win for our products." "We are thrilled to work with Piper Aircraft on this next generation of enriched performance composite five-blade propellers for Piper's top-of the line M-Class series," said Hartzell Propeller Executive Vice President JJ Frigge. "The durability of the new Hartzell prop integrates exceptionally well with the Piper Meridian and M500 for all around better performance." The five-blade Hartzell prop will initially be available at a list price of $52,000, which includes a trade-in allowance through Hartzell Propeller's Top Prop Program. However, Piper dealers and their authorized service centers will be offering special price consideration on the five-bladed prop for Meridian and M500 owners. Optimal in design, the Hartzell five-bladed composite propeller has been identified for use on current production M500 products and will be offered as a factory installed option once certified. Meridian aircraft already in the field can take advantage of this advancement through the STC. Piper Service Centers will be the first facilities to offer five-blade prop installation. Hartzell's five-bladed propeller, with a unique monocoque structure and advanced composite materials, was determined the ideal component for the PA-46-TP line for its low weight, low inertia, and low maintenance lifecycle costs. It will be issued with a five-year, 1,500-hour warranty, including associated parts. About Piper M500 The Piper M500 features the latest in Garmin G1000 avionics, enhanced safety features, and a number of other significant product improvements. The six-place M500 is powered by a Pratt & Whitney PT6A-42A 500shp engine and Hartzell prop, sports a 260 KTAS / 482 km/h max cruise speed and has a range of 1,000 nm / 1,852 km. Equipped with an improved Garmin G1000 avionics suite featuring the most advanced safety features available in any single engine turboprop aircraft, the 2015 M500 is listed at a competitive price of $2.26 million. About Hartzell Propeller, Inc. Hartzell Propeller is the global leader in advanced technology propeller design and manufacturing with over 3,800 propellers delivered annually to business, commercial and government customers. The company designs these next generation propellers with innovative "blended airfoil" technology and manufactures them with revolutionary machining centers and robotics. With ASC-II™ composite technology, Hartzell delivers optimal performance, strength, and durability with carbon fiber blades. Hartzell Propeller and its sister company, Hartzell Engine Technologies LLC, form the general aviation business unit of Tailwind Technologies Inc. The aerospace technology company also includes Mayday Manufacturing. For more info on Hartzell Propeller go to hartzellprop.com. About Piper Aircraft Piper Aircraft Inc., headquartered in Vero Beach, Fla., offers aviators throughout the world efficient and reliable single- and twin-engine aircraft. The single-engine M-Class series - the M600, Meridian M500, M350, and Matrix - offers businesses and individuals elegant performance and value. The Twin Class Seneca and Seminole balance proven performance, efficiency, and simplicity in twin-engine aircraft. The Trainer Class Archer TX, Archer DX, Arrow, Seminole, and Seneca aircraft form the most complete technically-advanced line of pilot training aircraft in the world. Unparalleled service and support is offered through a network of 38 dealers and nearly 100 service centers worldwide. All Piper airplanes feature advanced Garmin avionics in the cockpit. Piper is a member of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association.