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Opposed Piston Engine

1635yankee

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Fairbanks-Morse has been producing large opposed-piston engines since the 1930s and Duxford produced large, low-speed opposed-piston engines until its closure in the 1960s.
 

Trust12002

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To clarify:
horizontally opposed boxer type engine: crankshaft in the middle, 2 cylinders, 2 pistons pointing outward. Normal cylinders with a cylinder head at the top.
opposed-piston engine: 2 crankshafts on the ends, 2 pistons share ONE cylinder. No cylinder head, so has to use ports in tthe cylinder wall. Very different.
 

Trust12002

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Opposed piston engines do not all have two crankshafts per cylinder. Some have had one crankshaft below vertical cylinders with the top pistons driving the crank via long paired connecting rods (in tension for the power stroke). Doxford marine engines for example.

Opposed piston engines have two world firsts to their credit. In 1903 Louis Rigolly took a 13.5 litre Gobron Brillie on to the sands at Oostende and was timed at 103 mph making the GB the first car to exceed 100mph. Its engine was of the single crankshaft type described . In 1971 Mitsubishi built "Ocean Prospector" the world's first self-propelled semi-submersible drilling rig. It was powered by four ex-US submarine Fairbanks Morse engines, which had two crankshafts geared together. These engines supplied all the rig power. For rig moves propulsion came from two ex-US submarine electric motors driving propellers in steerable Kort nozzles. In calm water these engines could drive the 12,000 ton rig at 6 knots although in practice it was always towed as well. This rig has recently been brought out of layup and is being prepared to go to work again after 50 years. I think it unlikely to have the same engines though.

A final opposed piston configuration was employed by Rootes for a truck engine. This had three horizontal cylinders with a central crankshaft beneath them. Force from the pistons was transmitted through big rockers at each end. The core engine ignoring accessory drives thus had 3 cylinders, 6 pistons, 6 rockers, 12 connecting rods, 1 crankshaft and 34 bearings. It went into service and reputedly performed well. One peculiarity was that at high power e.g. when climbing hills in low gear it emitted a banshee wail. Its drivers called it "the Commer Screamer".
 

robunos

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That would be the Commer TS3 . . .



cheers,
Robin.
 

Basil

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Are there any news about the Cummins /Achates ACE (advanced combat engine)? It has been quiet about its development from the companies for two years now ...
 

Trust12002

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The Junkers Jumo two-stroke diesel aero-engines had two crankshafts geared together. The aircraft propeller was driven from the upper shaft and the engine accessories - the fuel pump, injectors and scavenging compressor - from the lower. About three quarters of the output power came from the top crankshaft. The Junkers engineers realised that scavenging could be improved by not having the pistons reach TDC together. The intake ports were under the lower piston and the exhaust ports under the upper. The engine was designed so that the lower crank lagged 11° behind the upper. The exhaust ports thus opened first, allowing much more efficient scavenging. The Jumos were the first and for a long time the only diesel aero-engines in service. They powered the Junkers 86; which visited British skies in 1941/42 in bomber and photo reconnaissance roles. The engine was not popular with aircrews because of slow throttle response and poor reliability. The aircraft performed much better with Swedish-built Bristol Pegasus engines.

Jumo.D.JPG

Cutaway Jumo in the Louman Museum in The Hague. I apologise for the picture quality but flash photography is not allowed and the lighting is less than optimum.
 

Moose

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Are there any news about the Cummins /Achates ACE (advanced combat engine)? It has been quiet about its development from the companies for two years now ...
There were a spate of articles about it around August.
The focus seems to be putting it into the next M88 refit at this time, though I bet it will be pitched to a number of programs.
 

1635yankee

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I was doing some checking on the enginehistory.org site. Junkers was the first company to build diesels for aircraft, with the MO-3 in 1913 (!) and the 500 hp FO-2 in 1916. I don't know if any of these flew, although the FO-2 was likely the grandparent of the 204.
 

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