Stirling Engine Powered Generator

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Jim Browning


The basis of the Stirling Engine Powered Generator is to educate the public about the process of energy transformation by means of an interactive display showcased at The Discovery Center of Idaho. This display will demonstrate the conversion of energy from one form to another and allow for observer interactions that provide a direct correlation between input and output. The process will begin with a user input that fuels a chemical reaction of propane and oxygen through combustion from a Bunsen burner. The thermal energy released from the chemical reaction will be captured by a Stirling Engine and transformed into mechanical energy by a process which can be associated to Boyles’s Law and thermodynamics. The Stirling Engine will transmit the obtained mechanical energy to a flywheel which is essentially a coupled permanent magnet rotor of a three phase generator. The generator will transform the mechanical input to an electrical output by means of electromagnetics. For the purposes of the output display, the electrical output will be rectified to produce a steady DC output. Additional display information will include details associating efficiencies and energy losses and will provide insight to the complexity of energy transformation.

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