The Advanced Rankine Cycle Engine and the Application Potential for Using the Cyclone Engine in the Automobile -- James  D. Crank      Draft-10 JDC  9-8-09

Should the reader begin with preconceived ideas based on past observations and existing steam cars and does not possess the ability to put those ideas aside and review the engineering with an unbiased view, then he should not proceed any further. There have been sufficient advances in the art in the past ten years that have drastically changed the entire engineering aspect and benefits potential of this power source for automotive use. It cannot be dismissed from consideration based on prior work and preconceived ideas based on outdated examples.

This paper is written to explore and discuss the possibilities of specifically applying the Cyclone Rankine cycle engine to the automobile. The Cyclone engine specifically, because it alone of all the steam systems proposed, is the most advanced, has a most competitive net efficiency and could be the closest one to full scale production if sufficient funding were provided.

The worldwide intent to reduce climate change and the proposed recent US government fuel mileage mandates has had a major impact on the American automobile industry. Couple this with the ongoing financial problems the industry is undergoing right now and a rational vehicle power source is a subject that must be reviewed with concern.

Under their present financial stress, the Detroit auto industry is reaching for solutions they can implement right now and satisfy the Government’s politically driven objectives. Solutions like hybrids of all types and much smaller engines are designs that can be brought to market with modest investment in a short time. Should the present Administration succeed in having Congress pass their concept of drastic improvement in mileage standards without modification, they have little choice but their present course of compliance.

The entire world automotive community must realize that the standards and mandates proposed by Congress, the E.P.A. and the Calif. Air Resources Board are politically driven and often simply not realistic. The basic chemistry of fuels, their sources and the resulting harmful exhaust emissions when burned in the automobile, are often beyond their understanding, and that of their staff. There is much more to mandating some fuel than just saying that it now must meet some mileage standard. These bureaucratic laden organizations are aiming for political gain and not funding, promoting and seeing that some rational fuel gets the support and distribution it must have.

One acknowledges the economy for the motorist in driving a Diesel powered vehicle. An engine notorious for long life with minimal service demands and high torque output and better fuel mileage than any spark ignited IC engine. This engine has a serious NOx problem; but recent developments by Daimler-Benz, BMW, VW and others in Europe and Japan have at least put this gas under some control; but at a furious cost for the exhaust system. Future work will provide a more cost effective solution.

These shortsighted mandates promote alcohol as the most promising fuel for the automobile, when it is not and has numerous problems. The wider use of the Diesel engine and the ready availability of pure bio fuel oils from plants and algae should be the focus right now. Such a combination will satisfy the environmental concerns, give high mileage to home produced fuels and supply the average motorist with a most satisfactory engine. An engine that is already seeing high production volume in Europe. Not the promotion of various concocted hybrids, like the Chevy Volt and other science fiction solutions.