Hybrid Car – More Fun with Less Gas

Anybody know where to get a small steam turbine? - Page 13

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Posted by vaughn on March 26, 2009, 12:40 am

That is why I said automotive "block", not "automotive engine".  It would
not be a simple project, and you would probably be better served to just
start fresh.  For starters, you would probably need to scrap the entire head
and start over.  As Daestrom pointed out, the ICE intake valves are totally
wrong for the job.


I don't even know where you would start.

That is the easiest part, we will just use a starter!

Agree.  It was not a serious suggestion, just a brain exercise.


Posted by Tim Jackson on March 26, 2009, 8:05 am
vaughn wrote:

Heating the oil above 100C might be a start.

Tim Jackson

Posted by Ulysses on March 26, 2009, 4:56 pm

Hmmm.... and perhaps that steam could be fed back into the system plus it
might have some lubricating qualities.

Posted by daestrom on March 26, 2009, 10:15 pm

Well, piston steam engines *do* use the water/steam in the cylinder to
lubricate the cylinder wall.  But the main bearings and rod bearings are
another matter.

Traditional piston steam engines use a crosshead riding on a slide to take
the lateral forces from the crank pin tending to move the rod from side to
side.  Modern ICE's do it with a taller piston and piston skirt riding along
the cylinder wall.  With a single-acting piston, I'm not sure there would be
enough steam leaking by the piston seals to lubricate the piston skirt
(ICE's splash/spray oil up the cylinder wall for this).

But there's not really enough room in a modern ICE block to put anything
like a crosshead arrangement.


Posted by Curbie on March 26, 2009, 12:30 am
 On Wed, 25 Mar 2009 00:04:28 GMT, "vaughn"

I know we already went around on this one, and not trying to start (or
continue) a spitting match (you're welcome to your opinion), but in my
opinion "for what that's worth" they don't have the same problem and
there is a big difference between piston and turbines of the small,
single stage types.

For those following this post the difference to my understanding is
due to the confined compression space and valve timing of the piston
engine. On a piston engine you can adjust valve timing to cut-off
intake pressure before the power stoke completes to maximize steam
expansion before exhaust, small turbines just exhaust too much
un-expanded steam and on small scale (to me) that's a killer.

On a small scale I'm not a big fan of steam engines (piston or
turbine) for generating electricity and I've never made a milliwatt
from steam, I can't make the numbers work. Just hypothetically if
someone was going to chase this on a small scale I wouldn't ignore the
piston engine just because it seems low-tech or not as sexy as a

Results is all that matters.


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