Date of Graduation
Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Numerous applications require the generation of electric power without connection to the utility power system. Many industrial, commercial, and personal applications require uninterrupted electrical power in the event of a utility failure. Additionally, the nature of military field operations necessitates the ability to generate electricity in areas where connection to the utility is impractical or impossible. Generation units selected for these applications must be reliable, efficient, compact, and lightweight.;Presently, rotary internal combustion engines coupled with rotary alternators are the primary generation unit used in these applications. This research contends that a tubular brushless permanent magnet linear alternator with a linear internal combustion engine offers advantages over the traditionally used rotary system. The linear system directly utilizes the combustion force and eliminates the need for a crankshaft, which reduces the volume. Additionally, since the linear system consists of only one moving pan, the reliability is increased, and the functional losses are reduced.;Previous research at West Virginia University has demonstrated the stable operation of a linear alternator and linear internal combustion engine system. However, the design of this prototype alternator and engine was not coupled, and the interactions of the engine and the alternator were not considered.;This research will provide a design approach for the alternator which accounts for the characteristics of the engine used as the prime mover and the interactions between the engine and the alternator. First, models of the engine and the alternator will be developed. These models will then be integrated to represent the overall system. Next, the models will be simulated, and the results compared to experimental data taken from the prototype system. The validated models will be used in an optimization routine to maximize the efficiency mid minimize the volume of the alternator. The results of the optimization will provide the design parameters for the alternator which best satisfies the objective of maximum efficiency and minimum volume. Finally, these optimization results will be discussed and explanations will be given.
Cawthorne, William Robert, "Optimization of a brushless permanent magnet linear alternator for use with a linear internal combustion engine" (1999). Graduate Theses, Dissertations, and Problem Reports. 3160.