rotary engine animation

animated engines - wankel

The rotary motion is transferred to the drive shaft by an eccentric wheel (illustrated in blue) that rides in a matching bearing in the rotor. The drive shaft rotates once during every power stroke instead of twice as in the Otto cycle.

The Wankel promised higher power output with fewer moving parts than the Otto cycle engine; however, technical difficulties interfered with widespread adoption. In spite of valiant efforts by Mazda, the four stroke engine remains much more popular.

animated engines - gnome rotary

The Gnome was one of several rotary engines popular on fighter planes during World War I. In this type of engine, the crankshaft is mounted on the airplane, while the crankcase and cylinders rotate with the propeller.

The Gnome was unique in that the intake valves were located within the pistons. Otherwise, this engine used the familiar Otto four stroke cycle. At any given point, each of the cylinders is in a different phase of the cycle. In the following discussion, follow the master cylinder with the green connecting rod.

Note that the crankcase and cylinders revolve in one circle, while the pistons revolve in another, offset circle. Relative to the engine mounting point, there are no reciprocating parts. This means theres no need for a heavy counterbalance.

Keeping an engine cool was an ongoing challenge for early engine designers. Many resorted to heavy water cooling systems. Air cooling is quite adequate on rotary engines, since the cylinders are always in motion.

Centrifugal force throws lubricating oil out after its first trip through the engine. It was usually castor oil that could be readily combined with the fuel. The aircrafts range was thus limited by the amount of oil it could carry as well as fuel. Most conventional engines continuously re-circulate a relatively small supply of oil.

astron aerospace revolutionary engine | power with a purpose

This new engine, Astrons Omega 1, has unmatched efficiency, extremely low emissions, and unrivaled power to weight ratio. The Omega 1s purpose is to change the world we live in for the better.

This new engine is anticipated to generate over 800 HP at 30000 rpm with an expected weight of 150 lbs. This will result in a power to weight ratio of 5.3 hp./lb. and will be several times more powerful than typical turbine engines such as two popular turbine powered aircraft engines in use today in the chart below. These two turbine engines generate 2.57 and 2.3 hp./lb. respectively. Also, one of the lightest yet powerful auto engines, the 1,300cc Wankel engine in the Mazda RX-8, only has a .92 hp./lb. power to weight ratio. The Omega 1 engine Improves on the Wankel engine with over 5 times better power to weight ratio.

In addition, the Omega 1 is completely scalable so, in applications where less power is required or a smaller or lighter form factor is necessary, a smaller Omega 1 engine is exactly what is needed. It could be scaled up as well by adding more rotor-blade pairs or more engines on the power shaft. The power to weight ratio will enable applications that havent been possible with any of the more traditional, heavy engines of the past. Examples of applications are a personal aircraft or a package delivery drone where an extremely light, small and powerful Omega 1 engine can make these designs not only possible but very feasible. The Omega 1 can potentially power anything driven by a shaft. New and emerging applications will be permanently changed with this new technology.

The Omega 1 is not only much more powerful than existing technology, it is also much more efficient. The Omega 1s rotary mechanism is very efficient because it has very little friction and fluid pumping losses. In addition, and perhaps more importantly, the Omega 1 has the ability to use only the amount of fuel necessary for the power required at any instant (called skip fire Technology). This means that it will use much less fuel than other technologies and have far fewer emissions. Dramatically less fuel and emissions will make a green difference in every application and help to make the world a better place. An efficient Omega 1 engine in an electric power plant using natural gas as a fuel or an ultra-efficient Omega 1 engine in an intercontinental aircraft, the fuel efficiency and low emissions will conserve fuel and help the planet breathe easier.

The Omega 1 is not only much more powerful than existing technology, it is also much more efficient. The Omega 1s rotary mechanism is very efficient because it has very little friction and fluid pumping losses. In addition, and perhaps more importantly, the Omega 1 has the ability to use only the amount of fuel necessary for the power required at any instant (called skip fire Technology). This means that it will use much less fuel than other technologies and have far fewer emissions. Dramatically less fuel and emissions will make a green difference in every application and help to make the world a better place. An efficient Omega 1 engine in an electric power plant using natural gas as a fuel or an ultra-efficient Omega 1 engine in an intercontinental aircraft, the fuel efficiency and low emissions will conserve fuel and help the planet breathe easier.

The Omega 1 engine is pictured in the animation to the right. It shows the engine driving a ducted fan in an aerospace application and is in the simplest, one rotor blade form of the engine. The engine could have multiple rotors, multiple combustion chambers, and multiple engines in serial configurations, but the simplest form is shown here. Cooling air enters and exits the engine through the center shafts, but combustion air enters through the small bump cowls on the periphery of the fan shroud. This offers built-in protection from any foreign-object damage to the engine core, unlike the air flow in a turbine engine which makes the turbine engine susceptible to bird strikes.

The air enters the engine via the side duct with a filtered direct flow down the intake air duct until it reaches the engine core where 2 rotor-pairs operate in the intake/compression (1st rotor pair) regime, and the power/exhaust (2nd rotor pair) regime. These rotor pairs are located back-to-back. Both rotor pairs consist of a smooth rotor with only one relatively wide gear tooth/blade. The intake/compression rotor pair is on the front side and has a volume approximately 1.3X larger (for supercharging) than the power/exhaust rotor pair which is on the backside. The rotor pairs are enclosed by side-plates and machined to tight tolerances all around. It is important to note that the tight tolerances provide an air seal at around 2500 RPM and above. No moving components are in contact with the housing, i.e. block, except for the bearings supporting the main power shaft.

Air is drawn into the intake, compressed to approximately 300 PSI, then pushed into an interior storage tank. Air is forced into the combustion chamber of the combustion/exhaust rotor pair. Once the inlet valve is closed, and the rotors have sealed off all exit points for air, fuel is electronically injected via direct stratified-charge injection (low RPM), or HCCI at higher RPMs. This causes the rotor blade to rotate around its axis, extracting 270 degrees of useful power out of one revolution, as compared to ~65 degrees per revolution of a standard 4 stroke pushrod engine. The exhaust can then be ducted as necessary through a catalyst and then exhausted or used for additional energy extraction, i.e. by using a turbo-charger.

What makes the Omega 1 so much more powerful, light, and efficient than a piston engine? First: There is a tremendous amount of friction, heat, parasitic, and pumping losses in a piston engine. Each time a piston moves up and down, the rings scrape against the piston walls and that causes friction. Nearly every moving part has contact with other moving parts and that causes more friction. The parasitic losses are not small, as they add up in the form of valve train losses, airflow restrictions, converting linear piston energy to rotational crankshaft energy, and inertial losses due to spring function. There are also significant pumping losses due to the requirement to liquid cool the engine via moving lubricants throughout the engine. All of these losses reduce the power of an engine, and dealing with these losses increases the complexity and weight. Second: The Omega 1 engine has very few of these losses. It has dramatically reduced friction, almost no parasitic losses, and no moving parts besides the rotational elements. There are very few pumping losses because the engine is air cooled via airflow around and through the engine, and only the synchronization gears and bearings require lubrication. This gives an added benefit of no cross-contamination of oil into the combustion chamber, which equates to lowering emissions. A large improvement in combustion and overall efficiency comes from the forced air supercharged intake at between 200 and 300 psi. Normal superchargers boost the combustion pressure by only 6 to 35 psi. The Omega 1 supercharger is far superior and is an integral part of the combustion process. Third: The overall efficiency also improves because of our skip fire capability of the engine. For example, the engine can fire every rotation while a vehicle is accelerating, but once at cruising speed in an aircraft, on a highway etc., the engine will only fire when there is a need, (every 5,10,50 rotations or whatever is required), and can idle at a high speed with very little fuel consumption. Then when conditions change and power is required, the computer will increase firing rate for nearly instant power with very low amounts of throttle lag. This can be tuned for maximum efficiency, maximum power, or a combination depending on desired application. Fourth: The Omega 1 engine is the first engine with an active linear power transfer. As the Omega 1 engine rotates, all the power is transferred through the single rotating power shaft. There are no offset crankshafts, no reciprocating pistons, and no eccentric shaft (as in a Wankel rotary engine). The engine weighs much less than a comparable piston engine because of the simplicity of the design, and because it has so few moving parts. The Omega 1 is More Powerful, Lighter, Efficient, and Simpler than a Turbine Engine The Omega 1 engine provides the ability to power a ducted fan much more efficiently, and without the major disadvantages of requiring conventional Brayton cycle propulsion technology employed by modern turbine engines. These include noise, high fuel consumption, throttle response lag, high rotational inertia, susceptibility to foreign object damage, and high manufacturing costs. This is due to complex machining and assembly processes of a relatively high number of parts pushing engine costs into the millions of dollars per unit. This is in addition to a costly and complex rebuild process required with operational hours. The incredibly simple design of the Omega I engine will enable the engine to operate with approximately the same number of internal parts as a typical single-cylinder reciprocating engine found in lawn-care and other outdoor power equipment. Anticipated wear characteristics of the engine will potentially push operational time between overhauls into the 6-figure range (expected 100,000 hours plus) with only very simple, low-cost, and inexpensive maintenance required in between overhaul cycles. Throttle response will be almost instantaneous, foreign-object damage will be eliminated by design and the acquisition cost will be a small fraction of current turbine-engine technology due to design simplicity. Exciting New Technology Protected by Patents and Know-How Matthew Riley, the Omega 1 inventor, is no stranger to patent protection. Matthew has many patents to his credit, and this is no different. His latest creation, the Omega 1 engine, is covered by multiple patent disclosures, provisional applications, and pending patent grants. Astron has filed nearly all of the patents both domestically and internationally. This includes China, Korea, India, and other areas where cars and aircraft are made. This technology is too good not to protect, so Astron has it covered! Summary The Omega 1 engine will change the world for the better by providing a new, smaller, more powerful engine while using much less fuel. This will produce significantly less green-house gasses, while improving torque and power in this incredibly small package. It will enable new and exciting applications as well as improve all existing transportation and power generating uses.

First: There is a tremendous amount of friction, heat, parasitic, and pumping losses in a piston engine. Each time a piston moves up and down, the rings scrape against the piston walls and that causes friction. Nearly every moving part has contact with other moving parts and that causes more friction. The parasitic losses are not small, as they add up in the form of valve train losses, airflow restrictions, converting linear piston energy to rotational crankshaft energy, and inertial losses due to spring function. There are also significant pumping losses due to the requirement to liquid cool the engine via moving lubricants throughout the engine. All of these losses reduce the power of an engine, and dealing with these losses increases the complexity and weight.

Second: The Omega 1 engine has very few of these losses. It has dramatically reduced friction, almost no parasitic losses, and no moving parts besides the rotational elements. There are very few pumping losses because the engine is air cooled via airflow around and through the engine, and only the synchronization gears and bearings require lubrication. This gives an added benefit of no cross-contamination of oil into the combustion chamber, which equates to lowering emissions.

A large improvement in combustion and overall efficiency comes from the forced air supercharged intake at between 200 and 300 psi. Normal superchargers boost the combustion pressure by only 6 to 35 psi. The Omega 1 supercharger is far superior and is an integral part of the combustion process.

Third: The overall efficiency also improves because of our skip fire capability of the engine. For example, the engine can fire every rotation while a vehicle is accelerating, but once at cruising speed in an aircraft, on a highway etc., the engine will only fire when there is a need, (every 5,10,50 rotations or whatever is required), and can idle at a high speed with very little fuel consumption. Then when conditions change and power is required, the computer will increase firing rate for nearly instant power with very low amounts of throttle lag. This can be tuned for maximum efficiency, maximum power, or a combination depending on desired application.

Fourth: The Omega 1 engine is the first engine with an active linear power transfer. As the Omega 1 engine rotates, all the power is transferred through the single rotating power shaft. There are no offset crankshafts, no reciprocating pistons, and no eccentric shaft (as in a Wankel rotary engine).

The Omega 1 engine provides the ability to power a ducted fan much more efficiently, and without the major disadvantages of requiring conventional Brayton cycle propulsion technology employed by modern turbine engines. These include noise, high fuel consumption, throttle response lag, high rotational inertia, susceptibility to foreign object damage, and high manufacturing costs. This is due to complex machining and assembly processes of a relatively high number of parts pushing engine costs into the millions of dollars per unit. This is in addition to a costly and complex rebuild process required with operational hours.

The incredibly simple design of the Omega I engine will enable the engine to operate with approximately the same number of internal parts as a typical single-cylinder reciprocating engine found in lawn-care and other outdoor power equipment. Anticipated wear characteristics of the engine will potentially push operational time between overhauls into the 6-figure range (expected 100,000 hours plus) with only very simple, low-cost, and inexpensive maintenance required in between overhaul cycles. Throttle response will be almost instantaneous, foreign-object damage will be eliminated by design and the acquisition cost will be a small fraction of current turbine-engine technology due to design simplicity.

Matthew Riley, the Omega 1 inventor, is no stranger to patent protection. Matthew has many patents to his credit, and this is no different. His latest creation, the Omega 1 engine, is covered by multiple patent disclosures, provisional applications, and pending patent grants. Astron has filed nearly all of the patents both domestically and internationally. This includes China, Korea, India, and other areas where cars and aircraft are made. This technology is too good not to protect, so Astron has it covered!

The Omega 1 engine will change the world for the better by providing a new, smaller, more powerful engine while using much less fuel. This will produce significantly less green-house gasses, while improving torque and power in this incredibly small package. It will enable new and exciting applications as well as improve all existing transportation and power generating uses.

Matthew Riley is the Founder and CEO of Astron as well as the Chairman of the Board. Matthew's latest invention, Astron's Omega 1 engine is revolutionary and will be disruptive to every engine market. Matthew is a creative genius in mechanical propulsion systems. In 2011 at the SAE conference Riley was recognized with one of the greatest achievements as an inventor when he was awarded the Best of the Best award for a two-stroke engine design that he invented. Matthew has many patents to his credit and has many new patents, both filed and pending for Astron's revolutionary new technology.

Lee Rowe has run several companies and worked in diverse industries from aerospace manufacturing to integrated solid waste recycling and disposal. He has over 30 years of management consulting, operational and executive leadership experience and has worked with portfolio companies in private equity for 16 years. He has held several CEO positions and has been responsible for returning companies to profitability and recovering them from default situations. He has served as CEO of Performance Wellhead and Frac, Rapid Rod Service, Elite Production Service and RWI, LLC. Most recently he has served as President and advisor to the CEO at Unique Elevator Interiors where he helped the team return the company to profitability. He has served as Chairman of the board for three companies and as a board member of several other companies. Before entering the private equity arena, he was General Manager of Valtek Control Valves, a division of Flowserve, overseeing operations in North and South America, Europe and India. He has served as General Manager at J.C. Carter, Inc., overseeing the LNG pump division. Also at J.C. Carter he oversaw all aerospace manufacturing operations. Earlier in his career, he worked in management consulting for 10 years as a Senior Manager at Ernst & Young and a Principal at A.T. Kearney specializing in aerospace, engineering and manufacturing. While working in the consulting industry he earned his Certified Production and Inventory Manager (CPIM) certification from the American Inventory and Production Control Society. He has expertise in continuous improvement, lean manufacturing and systems implementation. He also achieved the designation of provisional ISO-9000 Quality Systems Assessor. Mr. Rowe began his professional career working for Lockheed Missiles and Space Company as a rocket and jet propulsion systems engineer designing and testing missile, launch vehicle, upper stage and satellite propulsion systems. Mr. Rowe holds a BS in Mechanical Engineering and an MBA, graduating with High Honors, from Brigham Young University. He is conversational in the Korean language.

Mr. Whittle has over 40 years of experience in various roles in the high technology arena with nearly 30 years of experience as a senior level executive in both large companies and startups. He has served in a leadership position in innovation for 15 years with several startups and has been responsible for multiple new successful products. He has successfully managed two different billion-dollar product lines with responsibility for profit and loss, new features and functions, strategic partnerships, business development, program management, and engineering schedules. He has served as Vice President of Licensing and Business Development with General Electric and has been successful in other positions such as Intellectual Property Principal at Motorola and Sr. Director of Licensing and Business Development at Honeywell. He was one of three founders of BarPoint.com where he was instrumental in raising $40M. He created partnerships with the seven largest wireless carriers in the United States which was the fundamental reason for the company attaining a billion-dollar market cap. Mr. Whittle was the Deputy Division Leader of the Feynman Center for Innovation at LANL where he was responsible for managing over 40 people in the commercialization, technology transfer and intellectual property functions. He has distinguished himself in developing and coordinating strategies and creating successful partnerships with a primary focus on bringing new technologies to market. He is a strategic thinker and an expert at working with third-party vendors and partners; strategic partnerships are his specialty. He excelled in the Harvard Program on Negotiation and has negotiated many multi-million dollar contracts.

David Cool has over forty years of experience in the aerospace industry. He began his aerospace career at the Cessna Aircraft Company as a trainee machinist. His career continued into the early eighties where he worked for several small shops with CNC milling and turning and in 1984, he went to work for LTV (Vought) in Dallas, TX where he worked on large gantries building parts for the Space Shuttle and the B-1B Bomber. In 1987 he went to work for the Boeing Company where he continued working on gantry mills becoming a shop lead and tooling manager. In 1993 he graduated from Wichita State University with a BBA in management and economics and in 1994 he went to work for Brittain Machine, one of the largest machine shops in Kansas at the time. At Brittain he managed quoting, estimating and sales along with manufacturing engineering, IT and eventually becoming the Contracts Administration manager. In 2000 he went to work for Stellex Precision Machining as the Director of Sales and Marketing where he managed all domestic and international marketing along with contracts administration. In 2002 he became the Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Harlow Aerostructures in Wichita where he helped double the size of the company in four years. In 2006 he and his wife purchased Clearwater Engineering and as the President/GM they built a company that only had one customer at the time into a successful aerospace company that became a supplier to multiple aerospace OEMs including Lockheed Martin, Gulfstream Aerospace, Honda Aircraft, General Dynamics, IAI and Cessna/Textron Aviation to name a few.

Mr. Johnson is Astrons CFO. He has been employed as a tax accountant for over 20 years. He currently is majority owner in a small CPA firm in Derby, Kansas that employs 10 people. They provide tax, consulting and accounting services to a wide range of individuals and businesses. He received his Bachelors of Accounting degree from Wichita State University in 1998. In 2000 he received his Masters of Professional Accountancy degree from Wichita State University. He then sat for the CPA exam and passed it in 2002 receiving his certificate to practice. He is currently a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Kansas Society of Certified Public Accountants.

Mike Mockry has been in the aerospace industry for over 30 years and is the owner of Mockry & Sons Machine. His career in aerospace began in 1988 as a shipping & receiving clerk at McGinty Machine where he advanced to becoming an accomplished machinist and manager. With this experience, he moved into other managerial roles including becoming the Shop Supervisor and later the Quality Control Manager and eventually a General Manager. In 1994 along with his father he started Mockry & Sons Machine Company where he has spent the last 26 years managing this successful aerospace manufacturing company. During this time, he also gained experience in the automotive industry helping a local business develop and reengineer their fluid exchange machines including transmission, coolant, brake, and fuel systems. He continued to grow his business in the aerospace industry implementing the business systems and certifications necessary that helped his company to become a first-tier supplier to multiple aerospace manufacturers such as Spirit AeroSystems and Textron Aviation to name a few.

Cody Liby has been in the automotive and aerospace industries for over 24 years. He began working in the automotive industry in 1994 at R&L Automotive where he built engines and performed other automotive repairs for all makes and models. In 1997 he began working for a small aerospace machine shop, Mockry and Sons Machine and in 2000 he became the Shop Manager. During this time, he also accomplished several R&D projects including the start-up and design of BG Products transmission fitting kits and brake machines flow transfer block. In late 2005 he took a position as Operations Manager with Wichita Aerospace Spares (W.A.S.I.), overseeing all manufacturing departments including Milling, Lathe, Assembly, Forming, Welding, and Shop Scheduling. In 2008 he went to work for Buffco Engineering to establish a new Multi-axis Mill/Turn Lathe Division managing machine acquisitions, shop layouts, quoting, machine set-up, programming, and training. With these responsibilities, he was also able to work with Super Jet Drilling Systems designing adapter kits for all the different drilling systems producing many custom engine parts and modifications for race cars and off-road motorsports. In 2011 he accepted a role as Senior Estimator for the KMI (formerly Wolfe Machine), where he was responsible for all cost estimating and product valuations. Then In 2016, he accepted the position of General Manager at Mockry and Sons, where he began his aerospace career, taking over all aspects of shop management and operations until he joined Astron Aerospace in 2019.

Mark Kendrick has been a business owner and a manager of operations for the past 30 years. He was the sole proprietor of Kendrick Farms where he managed all facets of farming operations including production control and equipment maintenance while overseeing all sales and financial aspects of the business. From 2009-2015 he was a member of the Wellington COOP Board of Directors overseeing the administration of product needs for the local farming community and from 1998-2006 he was a member of the Chikaskia TWP (township) board of directors where he helped oversee the maintenance and infrastructure needs of the township. He moved on in 2017 to work for Clearwater Engineering who is a supplier to the aerospace industry. This move provided him experience in high-speed precision milling machining and the operations of a modern machine shop. He quickly moved into shop management and eventually into the expanded role of Operations Manager. With this change, he managed all complex high speed and hard metals milling as well as assembly, maintenance, and facilities. His hands-on experience in machining and shop floor management, as well as other managerial positions, has also led to leading roles in lean manufacturing, production management, and efficiency initiatives including high levels of work in business systems and operations management.

Dr. Barnhart is the Associate Dean of Research and Engagement as well as Executive Director- Kansas State University Polytechnic Campus, Salina, KS. He is serving as the executive director of the Applied Aviation Research Center which established and now oversees the Unmanned Aerial Systems program office. He is also responsible for the creation and administration of two research centers, the Applied Aviation Research Center, and the Bulk Solids Innovation Center. There, he is tasked with pivoting a campus with a primary teaching mission to one which incorporates leading research. He is responsible for developing business strategy, maintaining legislative relationships, and working with state leadership as current chair of the Kansas Governors Aviation Advisory Board. In this role his current project is development of a strategic plan to leverage Kansas' deep history in aviation manufacturing to global competitiveness in advanced aerospace research operations. Dr. Barnhart is also responsible for managing campus research activities including research seed funding program oversight and undergraduate research showcase development. Dr. Barnharts Research agenda has been focused on the integration of Unmanned. Aircraft Systems into the National Airspace System. His industry experience includes work as an R&D inspector with Rolls Royce Engine Company where he worked on the RQ-4 Unmanned Reconnaissance Aircraft development program, Research & Developmental Test Inspector, Allison Engine Co. (Now Rolls Royce), in Indianapolis, IN. where he monitored the build & tear-down of prototype jet aircraft engines. Engines included: 250 (all series), T-56, T-406, T-800, AE 3007 & 2100. Projects included the Citation X, V-22 Osprey, and Saab 2000. Dr. Barnhart is an invaluable asset to Astron in the development and production of this revolutionary new engine.

Ed has been an automotive engineering consultant for over ten years with a focus on embedded control systems. He has experience with design, simulation, testing, and data evaluation. He has over thirty years of experience at General Motors: 10 years in Powertrain and 20 years in Chassis (Vehicle Dynamics). Highlights include System Technical Director for the development and production introduction for Cadillac StabiliTrak (Electronic Stability Controls), Engineering Group Manager for ABS6 and TCS6 development, and ECM Release Engineer for the 2.3L Quad4 engine. Voluntarily retired from General Motors as a Technical Fellow in 2006. Specialties: Embedded electronic control systems, active powertrain & vehicle dynamics systems, and tutorials on applied electronic controls.

Bryan is a registered patent attorney, mechanical engineer, and former patent examiner for the United States Patent & Trademark Office (USPTO). His practice focuses on all aspects of intellectual property law, with an emphasis on patent prosecution, patent infringement/non-infringement opinions, negotiating and documenting technology-related transactions, strategic protection of intellectual property assets and intellectual property litigation. Bryan regularly handles the procurement of intellectual property in the U.S. and abroad, including in Europe, Asia, South America, Australia, and numerous other jurisdictions worldwide. He has counseled clients on the analysis of patent validity and infringement, represented clients in patent infringement litigation, and prosecuted numerous patent applications.

Wheels Bauder has been a pilot at American Airlines for 28 years. He was a graduate of the U.S. Navy Post Graduate School in Monterey, CA where he was trained as an Aviation Safety Officer, so safety stands as his first priority. Wheels brings thousands of flying hours and decades of flying experience as a pilot and as a test pilot so aviation is in his blood. Wheels will work with the aviation sector to ensure Astron engines are the best in every way that matters. Aircraft powered by Astron Aerospace engines will be the safest, most efficient, most powerful and cleanest aircraft in the skies. Wheels will help to make that happen.

Jillian Free has over ten years of Aerospace industry experience working as a Mechanical Engineer in Systems Design and Testing. Experience includes component, system, and aircraft-level testing and trouble-shooting for highly integrated electromechanical systems such as Fly-By-Wire Flight Controls, Command-By-Wire Flight Controls, as well as Avionics Autopilot/Autothrottle. This also includes test data analysis and integrity in support of flight test operations. She earned graduate degrees from Virginia Tech where her research interests included combustion analysis, thermo-structural response of materials, pyrolysis reaction kinetics, hydrodynamics of particles in entrained flows, and energy extraction from fluidized bubbling bed gasifiers. In addition, computational efforts included treatment of nonlinearities in heat transfer, large scale dynamical systems, and reduced order modeling techniques.

Monte Clark is a public speaker, author, and founder of relevant, a social marketing and sales company. Monte is widely considered one of the foremost thinkers and strategists of marketing on Linkedin. He has owned four other companies including a marketing, real estate, and ecommerce company. He was Vice President of Marketing for Quality Group of Companies in Kansas City before starting relevant. Monte is a fractional CMO for three companies including his role with Astron Aerospace. Monte coaches business owners and executives across the globe how to unify their marketing and sales teams through brand message and personal brand development. Monte is the host of multiple business podcasts and was a founding board member of the Christian Community Foundation of Kansas City.

top 10 wankel engined bikes | visordown

Sign up for our daily newsletter! By signing up to the newsletter you agree to receive emails from crash.net that may occasionally include promotional contentAPART from providing endless schoolboy sniggers the Wankel rotary engine is one of the greatest near-misses of 20th century engineering. It promised to revolutionise the bikes we rode and cars we drove, but despite decades of work never quite overcame the problems that prevented it from becoming a mainstream hit. We wont go into detail about how Wankels work, since its a slightly mind-bending concept based on a mind-bending movement that seems to virtually defy logic (see a great animation here). But the basic idea of getting rid of all the reciprocating bits of a normal engine the pistons, con-rods, valves and replacing them with a design that does the same suck-squeeze-bang-blog sequence using purely rotating parts is, frankly, genius. Sadly its genius thats hamstrung by a couple of flaws -most notably difficulties in sealing the rotor tips -whichhave effectively ended its challenge to conventional piston engines.We all know about Nortons and Suzuki RE5s, but there has been a host of other Wankel-engined bikes over the years,from prototypesto full production models. Heres our top 10 pick.10: Hercules/DKW W-2000First on our list comes the earliest production Wankel motorcycle. The Hercules, which was marketed as a DKW in the UK, was sold for most of the 1970s and as such was one of the most successful rotaries in terms of numbers built. Sadly, despite the bikes muscular name it was a little limp at around 30bhp from 294cc (although capacities of Wankel enginesdon't necessarily bare direct comparisonto those ofpiston engines), and despite being German its build quality was patchy at best.Related Articles

APART from providing endless schoolboy sniggers the Wankel rotary engine is one of the greatest near-misses of 20th century engineering. It promised to revolutionise the bikes we rode and cars we drove, but despite decades of work never quite overcame the problems that prevented it from becoming a mainstream hit.

We wont go into detail about how Wankels work, since its a slightly mind-bending concept based on a mind-bending movement that seems to virtually defy logic (see a great animation here). But the basic idea of getting rid of all the reciprocating bits of a normal engine the pistons, con-rods, valves and replacing them with a design that does the same suck-squeeze-bang-blog sequence using purely rotating parts is, frankly, genius. Sadly its genius thats hamstrung by a couple of flaws -most notably difficulties in sealing the rotor tips -whichhave effectively ended its challenge to conventional piston engines.

First on our list comes the earliest production Wankel motorcycle. The Hercules, which was marketed as a DKW in the UK, was sold for most of the 1970s and as such was one of the most successful rotaries in terms of numbers built. Sadly, despite the bikes muscular name it was a little limp at around 30bhp from 294cc (although capacities of Wankel enginesdon't necessarily bare direct comparisonto those ofpiston engines), and despite being German its build quality was patchy at best.

No, you didnt miss something. Yamaha hasnt ever made a production Wankel bike. But it nearly did, and this was it. Revealed at the 1972 Tokyo Motor Show, the RZ201 had a 660cc Wankel and made 66bhp. Although pretty tidy-looking, only a couple of prototypes are believed to have been made. If you like the look, though, you can always try to find a conventionally-powered Yamaha TX750 it used the same frame and suspension and looks virtually identical to the prototype RZ201.

Norton spent most of the 1970s fiddling with prototype rotary-powered bikes, but it took until 1984 before finally creating its first production Wankel, the Interpol II. But you still couldnt actually buy one. Not unless you were a police force or breakdown service, that is. Of course, they turn up occasionally in private hands these days, but these were really somewhere between prototype and production machines. If that fairing looks familiar its because it was borrowed from the BMW R100RT that was the favoured cop bike of the day.

Back to prototype waters again here, but Kawasakis twin-rotor X99 was clearly carefully considered for production, since the firm went to the effort and expense of buying a licence to build the Wankel motors. Shown in 1972, it was purported to be a 900cc machine making 85hp, but it disappeared without trace.

After endless development the Norton Classic was the first proper production rotary from the British firm. Using the same air-cooled, twin rotor 588cc motor from the Interpol II and made as a limited edition of just 100 bikes, it was seen as a first step towards the comeback of both the rotary and Norton as a real motorcycling power when it reached production in 1987 a full 11 years after the last serious Wankel production bike, the Suzuki RE5, had been dropped.

One of the few motorcycle firms to emerge from Holland, Van Veens attempt to make a Wankel bike was ambitious. The twin-rotor, 996cc engine (actually developed by NSU and Citroen and originally intended for a car) made a claimed 107bhp and was said to give the bike a 135mph top speed not too shabby in 1978 when production finally started, several years after the first prototypes had been made. Looked pretty good, too, although the rotary motor isnt as aesthetically pleasing as a piston engine. Buyers werent convinced, and only 38 were made before the project folded in 1981. A 2011 attempt to revive the bike with a ridiculous 85,000 price tag is supposed to have added another 10 machines to that total.

The P53 Commander of 1989 was another proper production bike, this time with Nortons new water-cooled twin-rotor engine. And it wasnt too bad by all accounts, even if you neededto be slightly obsessed with either the Norton name or the unusual engineering to choose oneover, say, a BMW or Honda.The firms success in racing at the time, using a derivative of the Commanders engine, helped give it a boost.

Realistically, if you want to experience a rotary-engined bike, youre almost certainly going to end up with an RE5. While the other contenders on this list were made in tiny numbers, the Suzuki remains arguably the only bike to have been truly mass-produced. Go onto eBay right now and there will probably be one or two available. The engine is only a single-rotor design (which means theres a bit less to go wrong) and with 62bhp it wasnt madly powerful even in 1974. But its smooth and intriguingly-styled, particularly in its initial form, with barrel-shaped instruments and tail light, whichwere replaced by conventional units in 1976.

Given the fact that Norton was enjoying racing victories again with its rotaries in the late '80s, it seemed odd that the first production bike it built around the engine was the Commander tourer. That was remedied in 1990 with the launch of the F1, which was nearly a proper sports bike. Its styling was pretty decent, albeit reminiscent of the first-gen CBR600, CBR1000 and Ducati Paso. Itsall-enclosed fairing alsomeant it lacked the hard, race-rep look that would have really played on the firms on-track success. Shame, because the bits underneath were serious and included a beautiful aluminium Spondon frame and high-end WP suspension. Around 130 were made and prices today are steep.

But not as steep as pricesof the even rarer 1991 F1 Sport, which finally gained proper race-rep styling like that on the firms BSB and TT bikes. Unfortunately, the firm only got it right by something of an accident, as by 1991 Norton was in its death throes.The F1 Sport was more an effort to use up the remaining parts at the factory than a serious attempt to woo buyers in big numbers. Technically, its much the same as the F1, but with the race bikes seat unit and new side panels that allow that Spondon frame to finally be seen. Unfortunately, the even better looking F2, shown as a prototype in 1992 and intended to be a cheaper follow-up to the F1, never reached production.

how rotary engines work | howstuffworks

In a piston engine, the same volume of space (the cylinder) alternately does four different jobs -- intake, compression, combustion and exhaust. A rotary engine does these same four jobs, but each one happens in its own part of the housing. It's kind of like having a dedicated cylinder for each of the four jobs, with the piston moving continually from one to the next.

Like a piston engine, the rotary engine uses the pressure created when a combination of air and fuel is burned. In a piston engine, that pressure is contained in the cylinders and forces pistons to move back and forth. The connecting rods and crankshaft convert the reciprocating motion of the pistons into rotational motion that can be used to power a car.

In a rotary engine, the pressure of combustion is contained in a chamber formed by part of the housing and sealed in by one face of the triangular rotor, which is what the engine uses instead of pistons.

The rotor follows a path that looks like something you'd create with a Spirograph. This path keeps each of the three peaks of the rotor in contact with the housing, creating three separate volumes of gas. As the rotor moves around the chamber, each of the three volumes of gas alternately expands and contracts. It is this expansion and contraction that draws air and fuel into the engine, compresses it and makes useful power as the gases expand, and then expels the exhaust.

Mazda has been a pioneer in developing production cars that use rotary engines. The RX-7, which went on sale in 1978, was probably the most successful rotary-engine-powered car. But it was preceded by a series of rotary-engine cars, trucks and even buses, starting with the 1967 Cosmo Sport. The last year the RX-7 was sold in the United States was 1995, but the rotary engine is set to make a comeback in the near future.

The Mazda RX-8 , a new car from Mazda, has a new, award winning rotary engine called the RENESIS. Named International Engine of the Year 2003, this naturally aspirated two-rotor engine will produce about 250 horsepower. For more information, visit Mazda's RX-8 Web site.

A rotary engine has an ignition system and a fuel-delivery system that are similar to the ones on piston engines. If you've never seen the inside of a rotary engine, be prepared for a surprise, because you won't recognize much.

At the apex of each face is a metal blade that forms a seal to the outside of the combustion chamber. There are also metal rings on each side of the rotor that seal to the sides of the combustion chamber.

The rotor has a set of internal gear teeth cut into the center of one side. These teeth mate with a gear that is fixed to the housing. This gear mating determines the path and direction the rotor takes through the housing.

The housing is roughly oval in shape (it's actually an epitrochoid -- check out this Java demonstration of how the shape is derived). The shape of the combustion chamber is designed so that the three tips of the rotor will always stay in contact with the wall of the chamber, forming three sealed volumes of gas.

The output shaft has round lobes mounted eccentrically, meaning that they are offset from the centerline of the shaft. Each rotor fits over one of these lobes. The lobe acts sort of like the crankshaft in a piston engine. As the rotor follows its path around the housing, it pushes on the lobes. Since the lobes are mounted eccentric to the output shaft, the force that the rotor applies to the lobes creates torque in the shaft, causing it to spin.

A rotary engine is assembled in layers. The two-rotor engine we took apart has five main layers that are held together by a ring of long bolts. Coolant flows through passageways surrounding all of the pieces.

The two end layers contain the seals and bearings for the output shaft. They also seal in the two sections of housing that contain the rotors. The inside surfaces of these pieces are very smooth, which helps the seals on the rotor do their job. An intake port is located on each of these end pieces.

In the center of each rotor is a large internal gear that rides around a smaller gear that is fixed to the housing of the engine. This is what determines the orbit of the rotor. The rotor also rides on the large circular lobe on the output shaft.

The heart of a rotary engine is the rotor. This is roughly the equivalent of the pistons in a piston engine. The rotor is mounted on a large circular lobe on the output shaft. This lobe is offset from the centerline of the shaft and acts like the crank handle on a winch, giving the rotor the leverage it needs to turn the output shaft. As the rotor orbits inside the housing, it pushes the lobe around in tight circles, turning three times for every one revolution of the rotor.

As the rotor moves through the housing, the three chambers created by the rotor change size. This size change produces a pumping action. Let's go through each of the four strokes of the engine looking at one face of the rotor.

The intake phase of the cycle starts when the tip of the rotor passes the intake port. At the moment when the intake port is exposed to the chamber, the volume of that chamber is close to its minimum. As the rotor moves past the intake port, the volume of the chamber expands, drawing air/fuel mixture into the chamber.

As the rotor continues its motion around the housing, the volume of the chamber gets smaller and the air/fuel mixture gets compressed. By the time the face of the rotor has made it around to the spark plugs, the volume of the chamber is again close to its minimum. This is when combustion starts.

Most rotary engines have two spark plugs. The combustion chamber is long, so the flame would spread too slowly if there were only one plug. When the spark plugs ignite the air/fuel mixture, pressure quickly builds, forcing the rotor to move.

The pressure of combustion forces the rotor to move in the direction that makes the chamber grow in volume. The combustion gases continue to expand, moving the rotor and creating power, until the peak of the rotor passes the exhaust port.

Once the peak of the rotor passes the exhaust port, the high-pressure combustion gases are free to flow out the exhaust. As the rotor continues to move, the chamber starts to contract, forcing the remaining exhaust out of the port. By the time the volume of the chamber is nearing its minimum, the peak of the rotor passes the intake port and the whole cycle starts again.

The neat thing about the rotary engine is that each of the three faces of the rotor is always working on one part of the cycle -- in one complete revolution of the rotor, there will be three combustion strokes. But remember, the output shaft spins three times for every complete revolution of the rotor, which means that there is one combustion stroke for each revolution of the output shaft.

The rotary engine has far fewer moving parts than a comparable four-stroke piston engine. A two-rotor rotary engine has three main moving parts: the two rotors and the output shaft. Even the simplest four-cylinder piston engine has at least 40 moving parts, including pistons, connecting rods, camshaft, valves, valve springs, rockers, timing belt, timing gears and crankshaft.

This minimization of moving parts can translate into better reliability from a rotary engine. This is why some aircraft manufacturers (including the maker of Skycar) prefer rotary engines to piston engines.

All the parts in a rotary engine spin continuously in one direction, rather than violently changing directions like the pistons in a conventional engine do. Rotary engines are internally balanced with spinning counterweights that are phased to cancel out any vibrations.

The power delivery in a rotary engine is also smoother. Because each combustion event lasts through 90 degrees of the rotor's rotation, and the output shaft spins three revolutions for each revolution of the rotor, each combustion event lasts through 270 degrees of the output shaft's rotation. This means that a single-rotor engine delivers power for three-quarters of each revolution of the output shaft. Compare this to a single-cylinder piston engine, in which combustion occurs during 180 degrees out of every two revolutions, or only a quarter of each revolution of the crankshaft (the output shaft of a piston engine).