Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Stirling-Powered Planes

Planes Powered By Stirling engines
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(+1, -2)
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One could power a commercial aircraft with a Stirling engine (see link). Stirling engines do take a lot of time to start, but airports generally schedule all of their flights, allowing the pilots to start their engines in advance. The efficiency of Stirling engines could save the airport a lot of money on feul.
apocalyps956, Jun 26 2006

stirlingengine.com FAQ http://www.stirling...ope=public&faq_id=1
info on stirling engines [apocalyps956, Jun 26 2006]

Stirling aircraft http://commons.wiki...ng_bomber_N6101.jpg
..full of 'feul' no doubt... [ConsulFlaminicus, Jun 26 2006]

"Why Aviation Needs the Stirling Engine" http://www.qrmc.com/fourpartstirling.html
Article from 1993 - 1994. This is an old idea, sorry. [spidermother, Jun 26 2006]


       Are you forgetting about thrust, or are these prop driven planes?
ldischler, Jun 26 2006

       <Inspector Clouseau voice>   

       'Good afternoon Madam, I am here to inspect your feul...
ConsulFlaminicus, Jun 26 2006

       another stirling idea...
anaeleus, Jun 26 2006

       I hate it how people say "one could", because usually more than just one could.
BJS, Jun 26 2006

       Phillips' essay is kind of funny, esp. the way it assumes the Stirling becomes more powerful with increasing altitude. Sure the air is colder, which is good for a Stirling cycle, but there's less of it, so the heat transference remains about the same. I haven't run numbers on this, but it'd be interesting to actually do a little crunching and see whether ol' Darryl is actually on the ball.   

       I also like how he assumes the prop is unaffected by altitude. If air drag decreases due to there being LESS AIR, so must lift, which limits the plane's maximum altitude for a given load, and its airspeed at that altitude: the prop is a wing whirling in a circle, after all. You can't do more with less in this case.   

       All of that said, the Stirling is under constant development, including in the aviation field. I like how its negative torque pulses are very mild compared to the ICE. That makes for happier drivelines.
elhigh, Jul 03 2006


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