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John Burns
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If Liquid Piston crack this engine in reliability, emissions and efficiency, these will be used on range-extenders. Then bye, bye, for ever appalling piston/crank engines.
The only real use for an ICE is as a range-extender using the new developments in rotary engines: SPARCS and HCCI ignition.
We hear of these contract to develop engines and nothing ever is heard of them. Does anyone know of any progress on this one?
The article was vague. This is a battery? yes? So it needs charging? yes? How long does it take to charge? At each charge the tanks needs the salt water replacing? yes? If so then I have to plug in two pipes to fill and empty the tanks and an electrical lead to charge the battery after?
This free piston generator looks to be cheaper to run than using grid power electricity to charge batteries and run an EV car. If so, which looks the case, then the onboard battery set will be just a buffer. This may increase emissions in cities, which is not desirable. Incorporate supercapacitors along with batteries for kinetic energy brake reclaim and acceleration, emissions will be very low indeed. It may get to the point it may be worth running your can in the driveway and plugging it into your house to heat a thermal store cylinder of water to use to heat the house and use for hot water.
Clarian labs developed the rotary generator calling it a hybrid battery. They have a very small Wankel engine generator in a "self contained" pack the size of a normal car battery, but maybe lighter than lead-acid batteries and some other types. Fuel is slotted in, in a fuel cartridge. They call it a battery as it is a store of energy. They state that the energy storage density is 20 times greater than current electrical batteries, so ideal as a battery range extender for EVs. They can be mixed with Lith batteries in car. Charge up from the grid and use the hybrid battery for longer ranges. They can all be standard size and added to, only connecting up to an exhaust manifold. A simple 15 minutes dealer job - or even DIY. Detractors say it is just a Wankel genny in a sealed box giving out electricity needing energy inserted. Clarian argue we also do with a normal chemical battery - we have to insert electrical energy into it. These hybrid batteries can be in a convenient place in a car to just pull out and slot in a fuel cartridge. The electrical coils are in the Wankel's rotor and in the centre of the engine, eliminating the shaft making is simpler, smaller and lighter again. It is exceptionally small indeed. Clarian say their hybrid battery can be slotted into a hybrid battery bay with a convenient exhaust manifold connection - screw off a cap and screw on the hybrid battery. You can just add them like you can do with normal electrical batteries. The more you have the greater the range. But most would only need one. Only Wankel engines can do this. We have progress here.
Clarian labs developed the rotary generator calling it a hybrid battery. They have a very small Wankel engine generator in a "self contained" pack the size of a normal car battery, but maybe lighter than lead-acid batteries and some other types. Fuel is slotted in, in a fuel cartridge. They call it a battery as it is a store of energy. They state that the energy storage density is 20 times greater than current electrical batteries, so ideal as a battery range extender for EVs. They can be mixed with Lith batteries in car. Charge up from the grid and use the hybrid battery for longer ranges. They can all be standard size and added to, only connecting up to an exhaust manifold. A simple 15 minutes dealer job - or even DIY. Detractors say it is just a Wankel genny in a sealed box giving out electricity needing energy inserted. Clarian argue we also do with a normal chemical battery - we have to insert electrical energy into it. These hybrid batteries can be in a convenient place in a car to just pull out and slot in a fuel cartridge. The electrical coils are in the Wankel's rotor and in the centre of the engine, eliminating the shaft making is simpler, smaller and lighter again. It is exceptionally small indeed. Clarian say their hybrid battery can be slotted into a hybrid battery bay with a convenient exhaust manifold connection - screw off a cap and screw on the hybrid battery. You can just add them like you can do with normal electrical batteries. The more you have the greater the range. But most would only need one. Only Wankel engines can do this. We have progress here.
Eight year later and nothing. Andrey's post was good. Electric motor traction is infinitely superior to direct internal combustion engine traction. It has max torque at zero revs. No power sapping, space consuming, heavy, complex transmission is needed. Decoupling the power source, the IC generator, and the electric traction motors, gives great benefits. Having a constant speed running Wankel engine generator provides electricity for the electric motors, up until now it was not feasible as piston engines were so inefficient. Matters are now better with more efficient electric motors, generators and now, and only "just" some IC engines. The Chevy Volt's piston engine cannot provide efficient power via the generator having to drive the car directly at some speeds. The problem is the engine. But things are improving to the point a full electric transmission is possible. Using supercapacitors 90% plus of kinetic braking energy can be reclaimed and then given back to accelerate improving efficiency. The generator Wankel engine can be run at a maximum, efficient, constant speed & load at its most efficient "sweet spot". The Wankel engine generators can be much smaller than a direct drive engine using a transmission. The Wrightbus for London has a 7 litre diesel engine but a 2.5 litre engine when the same bus is used as a hybrid - a third of the size. And this 2.4 engine will be running at maximum efficiency for most of the time, while the 7 litre engine will not. http://www.busandcoach.com/featurepage.aspx?id=1725&categoryid=0 A hybrid runs on the concept of an energy buffer, the battery and supercapacitors. Batteries consume about 33% of the kinetic braking energy while supercapacitors can reclaim 90% plus. Eliminating the mechanical transmission and having an electric transmission with the engine/generator providing electricity direct for the electric traction motors, without a battery (energy) buffer, is now feasible because of more efficient electric motors, generators and Wankel engines running at constant efficient speeds. The small, light, quiet and smooth Wankel engine now comes into it own in this application. So, making very light and small Wankel engines more efficient, running at an efficient constant speed is the answer. A piston engine and transmission plus the weight of a full tank of fuel (total car weight) is getting close to the weight of an EV and Lithium batteries and its total car weight for the same energy storage. Recall that 80% of the energy in a tank of fuel is wasted, so the energy density then is not great at all in that tank of fuel. A set of batteries will give off 90% plus of the stored energy. So, total EV vehicle weight with batteries and a normal vehicle with a full tank of fuel, can be about the same, but the EV will store more "useful" energy. And low slung batteries in car give a lower centre of gravity improving road holding. Using a Wankel generator engine running at a constant speed and load the efficiency rises dramatically offsetting any state change losses. Only 66% of the energy in the tank is wasted while 80% is lost with current direct drive setups. Plus there are all the other gains. Laser ignition, still under R&D but working, and direct injection should solve many of the Wankel's problems. A lean burn can be achieved with laser ignition. Running a Wankel at a constant speed will improve efficiency for sure and give the engine its niche at last as a range extender. The BMW i3 is showing the way with direct drive electric traction motors, but the inefficient two cylinder motorcycle engine used as a range extender needs replacing ASAP with a small, light Wankel engine. The motorcycle engine was not designed for generator use, as is the case with the Chevy Volt's engine.
This opposed piston/free piston engine is not proven. IT look quite big. The Wankel is proven and small. Look at the free piston Stirling engines. Stirlings tend to be big but the cool air at altitude in a plane operation make them a contender.
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Aug 17, 2013