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Craig Catto Named Recipient of Raspet Award
July 26, 2017 - Craig Catto, EAA 224433, is the recipient of the 2017 Raspet Award. The annual award recognizes individuals who have made outstanding contributions to the advancement of light aircraft design. Craig’s work on propellers spans decades and includes some groundbreaking designs.
“It’s a real honor to be recognized for the work that I have done,” Craig said. “It’s awesome, the people and projects I’ve been able to work with. Thinking outside the box with my work is definitely what keeps me going.”
Since he began making props professionally, Craig has supplied some of the best in the business. In 2013, his tireless efforts to improve his propellers led him to develop a new method for recording dynamic air flow, allowing his props to slice through air even more efficiently — something that probably seemed inconceivable to his clients, many of whom have set speed records thanks to Catto props.
“We’ve done some pretty neat stuff to try and figure out what’s going on in a propeller, and recently we got a lot of exposure from putting a GoPro on a propeller and flying, to visually see what’s going on,” Craig said.
Paulo Iscold, an aeronautics professor who won the 2016 Raspet Award in part due to the multiple world records he broke using Catto propellers, gushed over the props in the August 2014 issue of Kitplanes.
“The first prop that he sent for our 308 was almost perfect, and the second prop was better than perfect,” Paulo said. “I’m not afraid to say that Catto’s props are the best aerodynamic setup in the world today. He has been trying many different ideas through the years, and his propellers incorporate many features that are not listed in the usual literature.”
Craig and Paulo work together, and last year Craig actually accepted Paulo’s Raspet Award because Paulo couldn’t make it to Oshkosh. That means, technically, Craig will receive the award twice.
Although Catto Propellers continues to produce props for GA aircraft, Craig’s work has also led to some exciting new opportunities, such as collaborating with Google on drone propellers. His hunger for advancing prop technology makes Craig a perfect fit for the Raspet Award.
Craig will accept the award at the annual Homebuilders Dinner at 6 p.m. Thursday. Tickets are available at Homebuilders Headquarters.
By Ti Windisch