The Cyclone Steam Engine is not new news, but it is consistent news. Cyclone Power Technologies, Inc. is a company based in Florida that builds steam engines being used in the Abrams M1 Main Battle Tank. This move is part of the initiative of the U.S. Department of Defense to develop independence from fossil fuels.
The Cyclone engine is not intended to power the entire tank. The tank still runs on the gas turbine engine that made it famous, fueled by JP8 jet fuel. This fast, highly maneuverable tank is unequalled in its power. That will not change. What will change with the use of the Cyclone Steam Engine is the fuel demand and pollution. The Cyclone, intended to run auxiliary systems on the tank, is not powerful enough to run the tank itself. However, by powering auxiliary systems as the tank sits idle, it saves massive amounts of fuel. The engines produce 10kw of power, and can save the DOD plenty of money in wear and tear on their turbine engines.
As earth-shaking as the internal combustion engine may have proven, there are still those who strive to produce a profitable external combustion engine. This is because an external combustion engine can run on just about any kind of fuel, while the internal combustion model must have fuel that burns. With external combustion, and with a closed heating and cooling system, a steam engine can be developed. The drawback up until now has been that the engines may not be as powerful as the internal combustion model.
The variety of fuel sources are almost endless. A retired engineer from Lockheed, now a member of the Cyclone board of advisors, James Crank explained to Clean Technica the fuel considerations for the Cyclone:
“The…steam engine offers massive starting torque, eliminating the need for a transmission in most cases. The combustion system already eliminates carbon particle emissions and virtually all NOx, as well as the other usual pollutants seen with any fuel burning IC engine. The engine can provide true carbon neutral exhause when burning pure bio algae and plant fuel oils, which it can do without any modifications to the combustion system or the other components. In past tests, the Schoell cycle has burned over a dozen different fuels without any engine modifications, sometimes using a mixture of different fuels…”
RANKINE AND SCHOELL CYCLE
Apparently, the Rankine and Schoell Cycles are pretty much the same thing. In the first step of the Rankine cycle, the fuel is atomized and injected into the combustion chamber. There it is mixed with air and ignited. This creates heat, which is controlled at a constant temperature by thermocouples. The heat swirls around coils full of water, producing steam that reaches up to 1200 degrees F. At this point, it’s piped into the cylinders through a valve. The valves are adjustable, and have timers which control how much steam forces the cylinders into action. This, in turn, controls acceleration and torque.
A 38 inch Cyclone engine can produce more than 850 lb-ft of torque, doing away with the need for a transmission.
Since the Cyclone engine uses a closed system, the steam is cycled through condensers, where it is cooled and reused. This keeps the system running, with no need to replace the water, as it never escapes the system.
There are many advantages to a Cyclone engine. Besides the fact that they can burn virtually any fuel and produce lower carbon emissions, the engine uses no oil. The water is the lubricant, and you don’t have to change the oil or dispose of used oil. In addition, the units are almost silent.
The Cyclone also doesn’t need a muffler, since it is almost silent running, and it doesn’t need a catalytic converter, since it produces no pollution. It needs fewer moving parts, since it is doesn’t need a transmission.
The application here with LENR power is obvious. Once Andrea Rossi makes his hot cat units available to the public, a Cyclone engine plus a LENR unit could power most of the vehicles on the road – especially the larger ones capable of carrying heavier loads. While Rossi says vehicle adaptation is 20 years in the future, it appears that the future is now.