• Sep 4th 2007 at 6:02PM
  • 11
Adams Capital Management and Northwater Capital gave Nick Shkolnik $1.25 M and two years to try to revinvent the internal combustion engine. Shkolnik thinks his engine will be 2.5 times more fuel efficient than current ICEs. His company, LiquidPiston, is basing the engine on the High Efficiency Hybrid Cycle (HEHC) thermodynamic cycle, which is totally like the Otto, Diesel and Atkinson cycles.

Fuel is compressed like the Diesel cycle, combusted like the Otto cycle and allowed to expanded like the Atkinson cycle. If you understood any of that, Nick is looking for an engineer. If you do get a job with Nick, you can thank us by coming back over the next two years and give exclusive interviews to AutoblogGreen on how you help take over the $250 BILLION dollar internal combustion engine market :D

[Source: Courant]


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  • 11 Comments
      • 8 Years Ago
      Detroit9000, Adams Capital Management and Northwater Capital don't look like pump and dump companies to me... unless you think Dell sucks?

      http://www.acm.com/portfolio/past.html

      I am not saying their claims are correct but I don't see anything about them issuing stock or looking for money. If they went to the public market with these claims, I would need more. I thought it was interesting story.

      The guy's son is an MIT Phd. They convinced two VCs to give them over a million dollars. They are in contests. I don't think this is the last we hear from him.

      http://www.ge.com/economics/nikolay.html
      • 8 Years Ago
      Sorry, I mixed up the numbers for engine thermal efficiency and total drivetrain efficiency. Regardless, the claim of 250% improvement is even less feasible if you take 30% as your starting point.

      http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/atv.shtml
      • 8 Years Ago
      Technology should always lead over catalytic converters and this is a good example.

      Why has no one looked at 8 stroke engines with a heavy flywheel running at constant rpm through a cvt or fluid transmission?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Good morning.
      on The last issue of the "Engine Technnology" magazine,there is one page pub for Liquid Piston Engine saying that "L.P. engines are designed for an avverage fuel efficiency of 50%".
      Since we have entered the "Communication Age" one can think that , for "communication" people, 35%(taken as pesent average value) x 2.5 = 50% (efficiency) and not 87,5 % (which is a "stone age" approach).
      in the same magazine,in an article, page 14, it is said that Skolnik says that LP, by combining Diesel, Otto and atkinson cycles will improve efficiency up to 50 % at part load and up to 60 % at peak load.

      My view is that Improving the efficiency peak value (efficiency of engines at their best working conditions) up to 60 %through combination of cycles (and may be other combustion, heat recovery and other design items) does not
      look out of reach. But what will be the price of such engines ?
      Improving the efficiency at part load does not mean much. What will be the average efficiency on different standard circuits ? It will be improved , but of how much?
      It looks we should use an ICE of low power, working permanently at peak efficiency (or as per a program established for optimising the totality of the drive train efficiency), driving either:
      -an electrical generator linked to an energy storage système (battery, other?) which in turn supplies energy , upon demand, to electrical engines in the wheels; or
      -a fly wheel energy storage system delivering energy to the wheels through an electronically controlled torque and speed asjustable drive system.
      • 8 Years Ago
      I fail to see how combining 3 different engine cycles together will result in a 250% efficiency gain...
      • 8 Years Ago
      Any combustion cycle is limited by the Carnot efficiency, which depends on the hottest and coldest temperatures achieved during combustion. Carnot's equation reads efficiency = 1 - T_cold/T_hot. The temperatures are in Kelvin.

      Therefore, assuming a T_cold of about 300K (80F) and a T_hot of 1100K (1520F), the maximum efficiency possible is about 70%. Given that the current state of the art is in the low 20% range, the claims he is making are theoretically feasible.

      However, given the fact that the internal combustion engine has been under development for over 100 years, it is highly doubtful that a little tweaking of known cycles will improve its efficiency by 2.5 times. At this point we need a completely new concept.

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carnot_cycle
      • 8 Years Ago
      "Some people think diesel engines can be boosted up to about 60% efficient. Marine diesel already >50%, VW road going diesels 43%."

      "My point was that 50% thermal efficiency isn't all that earth shattering (ie bringing some comparison to the "other engines are only 30% efficient" bit). But I agree it's good that it's small and lightweight."

      More quotes from a linked article.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Well, then it looks like you don't get the job.
      • 8 Years Ago
      @Peter, sorry but your state-of-the-art figure of 20% thermal efficiency might have been appropriate in the 1920s.

      Passenger car Diesels are close to 45%, which gasoline DI engines can reach the mid-to-upper-30% range. Larger engines are doing even better, with marine applications over 50% thermal efficiency and research engines looking to reach 60% with exhaust heat recovery. All numbers stated above are peak values.

      The problem is that engine that operate on any thermodynamic cycle, no matter what kind they are, do not deliver their peak efficiency where they are called to most frequently operate, that is, at part load.

      Good luck finding a qualified engineer who would grab the line to apply for a job...
      • 8 Years Ago
      "have developed an engine architecture they claim will achieve 50% fuel efficiency (compared to the ~30% of existing engines)"

      From a link in the article.
      • 8 Years Ago
      Pump-and-dump technology has been improving the bottom line for wall street shysters for years. About every 7 years something like this comes around.

      Need I remind the readers that an F-150 that gets 2.5 times the mileage of the competition would be an incredibly hot product? That Ford has about 500 engineers who just sit around and monkey with stuff like this?

      ABG's useful:moronic ratio peaking into the 5s or 6s. We're in popular mechanics territory. When with the internet gods reintroduce "the editor"?
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