1.0 TurbX Introduction
Because of the market disruptive competitive advantages of 25% to a factor of two fuel efficiency, a factor of three smaller size, a factor of two lower weight, lower emissions, lower initial cost, lower operating cost, and longer life, reasonable TurbX market objectives are to take essentially all of the turbine market ($350 billion in annual sales) and at least one third of the piston engine market ($150 billion annually). The approach to this $500 billion market is to seek research funding to complete product development, and to form alliances where possible, and form companies as required to fit different market segments. The project technical objective is pilot production and market entry in the fifth year after funding becomes available.
After a strongly positive review of engine theory and concept by NASA in 1996, TurbX Engines was incorporated to provide a vehicle to raise $250,000 through family and friends to support proof of concept prototyping and international patents US 6,105,359 etc. Using these funds, the proof of concept prototype was designed and fabricated. During this period DOE Oak Ridge National Laboratory (DOE ORNL) in ORNL/TM-2000/116 reviewed all available engine cycles for the USMC and recommended to the USMC that the TurbX engine concept was the most viable for future development. Testing of the prototype by DOE ORNL and the University of Tennessee was published in 2003 ASME TURBO EXPO with the recommendation of further development. Performance projections are based on the work done by NASA and these papers. Development of a 100hp engineering prototype is currently underway.
|Figure 1: TurbX Turboshaft Engine shown on right introduces the major components of the TurbX engine – Top Stator, Bottom Stator, Retaining Ring (which holds the stators together), the (yellow) Rotor (pierced by two rows of rotor blades), Drive Shaft, Cooling Fan, and the Gap Control Drive.
Heavy Fuel / Multifuel Engine
Environmentally Friendly, Long Lived
Extremely Simple Engine, Low Cost
Engine Sizes 1 hp to 100,000 hp
Expected Practical Efficiency at
10:1 Volumetric Compression Ratio
0.22 to 0.28 lb-fuel/hp-hr
2hp/lb to 10hp/lb
2.0. TurbX Performance Compared to a Turbine Engine
The key invention of the TurbX engine is the achievement of the high efficiency of a constant volume combustion (the piston engine efficiency advantage) coupled with expansion to ambient ( the efficiency advantage of a turbine engine). Figure 1 introduces the six principal elements of the 100hp TurbX engine under development. Figure 2 compares the estimated performance of the TurbX engine with a state of the art turbine in a ship propulsion application.
|Output (Shp):||50,000 Shp||40,500 Shp|
|Specific Fuel Consumption (lb/Shp-hr)||0.22 to 0.28||0.354|
|(Per NASA and DOE-ORNL Publications)|
|Thermal Efficiency:||62% to 49%||39%|
|Weight (lb):||5000 lb||11,545 lb|
|Horsepower per Pound:||10 hp/lb||3.5 hp/lb|
|Length (m):||6.7 ft (2 m)||22 ft (6.7 m)|
|Height (m):||6.7 ft ( 2 m)||6.7 ft ( 2 m)|
|Output (Shp):||100 Shp||108 Shp|
|Specific Fuel Consumption (lb/Shp-hr)*||0.22 to 0.28||.34|
|Thermal Efficiency:||62% to 49%||41%|
|Weight (lb):||50 lb (23kg)||495 lb 179kg|
|Horsepower per Pound||2 hp/lb||0.2 hp/lb|
|Length (m):||1 ft sq (30 cm)||2.5 ft (0.768 m)|
|Height (m):||6 in ( 15 cm)||2x2 ft ( 0.6 m)|
|Volume||0.5 cu-ft||10 cu-ft|
|Horsepower per Cubic Foot||200 hp/cu-ft||10hp/cu-ft|
The TurbX engine is efficient because it operates on a new and better engine cycle and has substantially less than half the losses of a comparable turbine engine. The reduced losses compared to a turbine engine make small heavy fuel engines possible. It has lower emissions because it burns substantially less fuel. It is low cost and low maintenance because of extreme simplicity. It has materials advantages and longer life because the rotor operates 850oC cooler than the rotor in a comparable turbine engine.
3.0. Significance: Events of comparable scientific significance in engine history are:
|1. Carnot 1824||Theoretical Thermodynamics|
|2. Otto 1876||Initial Efficiency ~15%|
|3. Diesel 1897||Initial Efficiency ~5%|
|4. Brayton 1930’s||Initial Efficiency -25%|
After 70 years of research the best practical efficiencies are near 40%.
The fifth major event in engine history is the TurbX engine invented in 1995 and having expected practical efficiency of 50% based on the theoretical projections by NASA, DOE Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and the University of Tennessee shown in Figure 3 below.
Two patents and a master’s thesis document the TurbX engine cycle, the conceptual design, aerodynamics, thermodynamics, and the testing of the half engine (no compressor) prototype.
Below is a synopsis of publications in the open technical literature by outside scientists concerning TurbX engine.
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