Cyclone Power Technologies to Build Engine For Steam Car Land Speed Record Attempt
9 December 2009
|The Mark V engine. Click to enlarge.|
Cyclone Power Technologies Inc. has been selected by the US Land Steam Record Team to provide the high performance racing engine for its streamliner vehicle, which will attempt to break the world land speed record for steam vehicles in Bonneville, UT, as early as next August.
The US Land Steam Record (USLSR) vehicle will be designed, constructed and driven by steam car veteran and team leader Chuk Williams. Cyclone will provide a modified Mark V external combustion automotive engine (earlier post). At 180 hp (134 kW) with 860 lb-ft (1,166 N·m) of starting torque, the Cyclone engine will attempt to propel the 21', 1,600-lb (726-kg) USLSR vehicle at speeds of more than 200 mph (322 km/h) on the seven-mile track at the Bonneville salt flats.
This is a great test of the power and performance of our all-fuel capable, earth friendly Mark V automotive engine. Given our current calculations, we expect to beat the standing land speed record by a comfortable margin with an engine that can ultimately be placed into everyday passenger vehicles.
—Cyclone CEO and engine inventor, Harry Schoell
|Profile cross-section of the Mark V. Click to enlarge.|
The Cyclone modifies the traditional Rankin cycle steam engine to deliver the use of super-critical pressure (3,200 psi) and super-heated steam (1,200° F)—normally found in high-efficiency electrical power plants—in an efficient, compact package suitable for a vehicle. The 6-cylinder radial Mark V engine features a calculated efficiency of 31.57%. (Earlier post.)
The current land speed record for steam vehicles, which is still subject to official confirmation by the Federation Internationale d’Automobile, is held by Team Inspiration of Great Britain. The British vehicle recorded speeds more than 148 mph (238 km/h) in August 2009, which broke the previous unofficial record of 145 mph (233 km/h) set in 1985 by Bob Barber, and the official FIA record of 127 mph (204 km/h) set in 1906 by Fred Marriott, an American driving a Stanley Steamer at Daytona Beach.
The project is being endorsed by the Steam Automobile Club of America. Other individuals associated with the team include former engineers at NASA, Lockheed Martin and MIT. Potential corporate sponsors may include providers of US grown biofuels to power the USLSR vehicle—the Cyclone Engine is capable of running on a variety of fuels, and the team has yet to choose one for the record attempt.
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