REGI U.S., Inc. and Reg Technologies Inc. announced that the assembly on one side of the 375 hp (280 kW) RadMax axial vane rotary diesel engine (earlier post) has been completed and initial testing has begun. Initial dry friction tests indicate the engine should have friction loads equal to or better than a standard diesel engine, the company said.
|375 HP Diesel RadMax engine. Click to enlarge.|
The engine comprises a disc-shaped rotor and driveshaft which turn the housing, or stator, which remains stationary. Up to 12 vanes mounted parallel to the shaft slide up and down along the outside of the rotor as they follow a track along the inside of the stator housing. Combustion chambers form between the rotor, stator walls and vanes, and their volumes change as the vanes move during rotation.
The RadMax engine has only two unique moving parts, the vanes (up to 12) and the rotor; the design makes it possible to produce up to 24 continuous power impulses per one rotation that is vibration-free and extremely quiet.
The original plan for the tests was to complete the assembly on the right side first. Then, after friction and compression tests the entire engine will be assembled for additional testing with diesel and natural gas.—Paul Porter, Chief Engineer
Dry friction was measured with two actuators installed with vanes, but no seals. The vanes were placed in adjacent slots with the oil coolers minus the seals and the linear bearing installed. In testing, the following was observed:
Static friction was measured at 72 ft-lbs @ 1 rpm.
Alignment of the stator to cam was critical to the value of the friction measured. The vanes and actuators will bind and friction will rise when the alignment is out. Therefore the above numbers are preliminary because the alignment was done visually and it is expected the friction will drop additionally when full and proper alignment is achieved.
There was zero lubrication of the bearings, oil cooler and vanes.
Evidence of rubbing of the vane against the oil coolers was observed at disassembly.
The above friction numbers would indicate the engine should have friction loads as good as or better than a standard diesel engine.
Required changes will be made to the rotor, and during the week of 11 February, the engine will be assembled with seals in place. Friction numbers with the sels installed will then be measured.