Wankel Engine

Topics: Internal combustion engine, Wankel engine, Reciprocating engine Pages: 4 (1487 words) Published: October 14, 2012
The Wankel engine, invented by German engineer Felix Wankel, is a type of internal combustion engine which uses a rotary design to convert pressure into a rotating motion instead of using reciprocating pistons. Its four-stroke cycle takes place in a space between the inside of an oval-like epitrochoid-shaped housing and a rotor that is similar in shape to a Reuleaux triangle but with sides that are somewhat flatter. This design delivers smooth high-rpm power from a compact size. Since its introduction the engine has been commonly referred to as the rotary engine, though this name is also applied to several completely different designs. He began its development in the early 1950s at NSU Motorenwerke AG (NSU) before completing a working, running prototype in 1957. NSU then licensed the concept to companies around the world, which have continued to improve the design.

In the Wankel engine, the four strokes of a typical Otto cycle occur in the space between a three-sided symmetric rotor and the inside of a housing, although the Wankel cycle differs from Otto cycle in the duration of the expansion part of cycle, that is much longer (Columbia). In the basic single-rotor Wankel engine, the oval-like epitrochoid-shaped housing surrounds a rotor which is triangular with bow-shaped flanks (often confused with a Reuleaux triangle,[14] a three-pointed

curve of constant width, but with the bulge in the middle of each side a bit more flattened While a four-stroke piston engine makes one combustion stroke per cylinder for every two rotations of the crankshaft (that is, one-half power stroke per crankshaft rotation per cylinder), each combustion chamber in the Wankel generates one combustion stroke per each driveshaft rotation, i.e. one power stroke per rotor orbital revolution and three power strokes per rotor rotation. Thus, power output of a Wankel engine is generally higher than that of a four-stroke piston engine of similar engine displacement in a...
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