Today, Modern diesel engine technology is developing at a pace like never before. This is a great time to be an automotive journalist because there are so many interesting and significant designs to showcase. No longer are we limited to describing the nuances of a slightly different model from last year. The large car companies are finally headed toward high-tech diesel and other efficiency innovations because of carbon emissions laws and research grants. At the same time, the automotive marketplace is expanding and resembles how it looked in the early 1900s, with dozens of car companies using many different technologies. These new nimble players come from the engineering and manufacturing fields, and in most cases are too small to launch major marketing campaigns. These potent (but often unrecognized companies) are taking what they're good at and applying it to building an automobile for the masses. The amazing cars they come up with are prototypes built only in small batches, but that could change with public demand.
The Niama-Reisser N-R 1 concept car holds four passengers, weighs about 1,200 pounds, and is reported to get 200 mpg at 70 mph. Its 5-gallon fuel tank only needs to be refilled every 1,000 miles. Its service intervals are scheduled to occur every 25,000 miles and include greasing the independent suspension and the engine's main bearing assembly. The car's Centrifugal Heinz Boxer (CHB) engine represents a clean break from traditional combustion engines, in which pistons move up and down in a reciprocating linear motion. Instead, the CHB engine uses a pair of opposing torus-shaped pistons (they look like a section of a doughnut) that oscillate in a rotary motion. Torque is applied to the crankshaft with a mechanism that can also vary the compression ratio (beyond 25:1). This engine operates on the Reisser-Cycle, which provides two power strokes for every rotation of the engine. This explains its good power-to-weight ratio-130 hp and 160 lb-ft of torque from 210 pounds. Fuel is reportedly converted into energy at 67 percent thermal efficiency (work out divided by fuel in). To see an animation showing how the engine works and video of it operating on a dyno, go to www.reissercyle.com.
Ceramic Engine Materials
The CHB is engineered from ceramic, which means it doesn't need oil lubrication or a liquid cooling system. If that doesn't impress you, then listen to this: The tolerances are so precise and material so stable, the pistons don't need compression rings. In fact, Niama-Reisser is developing ceramic pistons for today's diesel and gas engines-developments that have brought on the ceramic age, such as machining advancements and breakthroughs in alloy science. Remember, all this technology not only helps mileage, it also helps performance. Next on Niama-Reisser's plate is the furthering of the CHB-Evo made from carbon fiber and supported by an F-1 chassis. I'll make sure to keep you up to date on all that's happening in advanced diesel technology. If you know of any groundbreaking ideas or would like your technology showcased, send me an email at Jason.firstname.lastname@example.org.