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Thread: gunpowder-powered engine

  1. #1 gunpowder-powered engine 
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    hello, would it be possible to run an engine on gunpowder?
    directly feeding the powder into the chambers, and heating it?


    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
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  3. #2  
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    sounds a bit like coal injection in a blast furnace

    if you knew the problems you can have with blockages, you'll see why in many cases feeding solid fines into an engine may not be such a clever idea


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  4. #3  
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    You probably mean cordite, blackpowder is pretty well obsolete.

    Anyway, solid combustibles don't burn cleanly and the residue build up would surely mean a service to the cylinders every few hundred miles, wouldn't you say?
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  5. #4  
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    There are a number of inventors who have designed gunpowder engines and even left us blueprints.

    The Mythbusters team tried building engines from these plans. Every attempt failed. Conclusion: No one has ever built a successful gunpowder engine.

    Check this link: http://kwc.org/mythbusters/2007/04/e...er_rocket.html
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  6. #5  
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    no? how about this gunpowder engine:



    combine this with a G11's caseless ammunition, and what you basically have,
    is a gunpowder engine.
    instead of car cylinders, you have rifle-barrels, with an automatic feeding
    mechanism, and a crankshaft attached to the feeding mechanism.
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
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  7. #6  
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    What about the most common gunpowder engine. A gas powered automatic or semi-automatic rifle. All many of them do is use the expanding gas from the round to drive a return rod that re-cocks and reloads the chamber by moving the breach block. If you decrease the stiffness of the return spring and use some of that energy to drive mechanical system then you have an easy to build gunpowdered engine.

    Posted by: Mark Plows | May 24, 2007 5:15 AM
    ...... I like this. What he doesnt take into account is that breach return utilizes less than 1 % of the total energy. So you are wasting 99%+ of your fuel. Plus you have to shoot off 2,000,000 rounds of ammunition to get to asda.
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    Oi mate! I just got these bichin new wheels.

    I do 0 to 60 in half an hour and 1 mile to the ton!
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  9. #8  
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    well, at least its a concept that could work :P
    not particularly fuel efficient or anything like that though.
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
    A.C Doyle
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  10. #9  
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    Methink you forgot that gunpowder engines already exist and are used quite often. We call them "solid propellant rockets". :wink:


    Anyway if you're thinking of a reciprocating engine, your best choice would be having a combustion chamber that fed gas at a constant pressure and temperature to the cylinders... like, say, a combustion chamber that heated air in a pressure chamber which in turn would be fed to the engine, then returned to the chamber for heating again. That would be a "gunpowder-heated hot air engine".

    Anyway all this would be less proficent than any other reciprocating engine where combustion hapened inside the cylinder.

    As for continuous engines, it would be easy to build a turbine engine that used thinly powdered fuel instead of liquid fuel. The problme would be feeding the fuel to it. But theoretically, using the right particle size and pure carbon, you could achieve a really proficent combustion, but then turbine engines aren't very proficent at low speeds like the ones needed for moving a car. You'll gonna lose lots of energy gearing down from 20,000 rpm...
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  11. #10  
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    the M1A1 abrams tank uses a 1500hp gas turbine engine. as does the russian T-80U.
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
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    Quote Originally Posted by dejawolf
    the M1A1 abrams tank uses a 1500hp gas turbine engine. as does the russian T-80U.
    The M1A1 abrams is a gas muzzler which has been bought only by countries who don't mind of fuel comsumption -USA and Saudi Arabia. An Abrams comsumes about twice as much fuel as an equivalent diesel MBT like a Leopard 2 or a Challenger. :wink:

    Turbines are not very fuel-proficent when they're geared to low rpm or downsized to small outputs.
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  13. #12 Re: gunpowder-powered engine 
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    Quote Originally Posted by dejawolf
    hello, would it be possible to run an engine on gunpowder?
    directly feeding the powder into the chambers, and heating it?

    Mmmmmm.

    You've never been in the military and held a multi-round device?

    I know, "thought of before".

    ........get to your point.
    Does a theory of everything therefore need to be purely theoretical and only account for the known laws and forces in handling the improbability of fortune telling?

    the www feature below can explain it better.
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  14. #13  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lucifer
    Quote Originally Posted by dejawolf
    the M1A1 abrams tank uses a 1500hp gas turbine engine. as does the russian T-80U.
    The M1A1 abrams is a gas muzzler which has been bought only by countries who don't mind of fuel comsumption -USA and Saudi Arabia. An Abrams comsumes about twice as much fuel as an equivalent diesel MBT like a Leopard 2 or a Challenger. :wink:

    Turbines are not very fuel-proficent when they're geared to low rpm or downsized to small outputs.
    well, the M1A1 was sold to egypt, and recently- australia in favor of the leopard 2(although the leo2 is by far the most popular tank in europe)
    and australia is known for having pretty stringent military budgets
    (they've been happily trundling about in their leopard AS1s or almost 30 years now)

    it is a gas-guzzler when idling, compared to a diesel, but with both engines running at full speed, the fuel usage is actually comparable.
    which is why they're used in airplanes and helicopters.
    at full RPM they give the ultimate power/weight ratio.

    well, i'm not trying to sell turbines as the be-all, end-all system.
    but in favor of a good discussion...who can resist? :-D
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
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  15. #14  
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    This is what Sweddish Army found out when they tested the Abrams, the Leopard 2 and a early Leclerc prototype:

    Distance made:

    Abrams: 3,820 km
    Leopard 2: 3,730 km
    Leclerc: 3,000 km

    Fuel comsumed:

    Abrams: 56,488 liters
    Leopard 2: 26,874 liters
    Leclerc: 41,400 liters

    Liters per kilometer consumed:

    Abrams: 14.8 liters/km
    Leopard 2: 7.2 liters/km
    Leclerc: 13.8 liters/km

    We can discount the Leclerc as it was an early protoype and suffered many problems during the tests. But still, the Abrams comsumed twice the fuel per kilometer of the Leopard 2 doing the same operational tests on the same terrain and under the same conditions. :wink:
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  16. #15  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lucifer
    This is what Sweddish Army found out when they tested the Abrams, the Leopard 2 and a early Leclerc prototype:

    Distance made:

    Abrams: 3,820 km
    Leopard 2: 3,730 km
    Leclerc: 3,000 km

    Fuel comsumed:

    Abrams: 56,488 liters
    Leopard 2: 26,874 liters
    Leclerc: 41,400 liters

    Liters per kilometer consumed:

    Abrams: 14.8 liters/km
    Leopard 2: 7.2 liters/km
    Leclerc: 13.8 liters/km

    We can discount the Leclerc as it was an early protoype and suffered many problems during the tests. But still, the Abrams comsumed twice the fuel per kilometer of the Leopard 2 doing the same operational tests on the same terrain and under the same conditions. :wink:
    yes, you would only see the leopard 2 using the same amount of fuel as an M1, when driving top-speed on a straight road.
    the leclerc uses a small turbine engine to turbocharge its engine,
    and when the main engine is turned off, the turbine provides power for the turret systems.
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
    A.C Doyle
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  17. #16  
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    Quote Originally Posted by dejawolf
    Quote Originally Posted by Lucifer
    This is what Sweddish Army found out when they tested the Abrams, the Leopard 2 and a early Leclerc prototype:

    Distance made:

    Abrams: 3,820 km
    Leopard 2: 3,730 km
    Leclerc: 3,000 km

    Fuel comsumed:

    Abrams: 56,488 liters
    Leopard 2: 26,874 liters
    Leclerc: 41,400 liters

    Liters per kilometer consumed:

    Abrams: 14.8 liters/km
    Leopard 2: 7.2 liters/km
    Leclerc: 13.8 liters/km

    We can discount the Leclerc as it was an early protoype and suffered many problems during the tests. But still, the Abrams comsumed twice the fuel per kilometer of the Leopard 2 doing the same operational tests on the same terrain and under the same conditions. :wink:
    yes, you would only see the leopard 2 using the same amount of fuel as an M1, when driving top-speed on a straight road.(...).
    And that's what MBT do all day round, maybe? :P

    Those where operational tests. Abrams had 110% more comsumption under combat conditions, which means more logistic burden. Point is, turbine engines consume much more fuel than diesel engines. :wink:
    “If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature, but by our institutions, great is our sin.” -Charles Darwin
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  18. #17  
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    but then you have this: the LV100 gas turbine.
    chec the specs:



    The LV100 engine is the biggest contributor to the M1 Abrams' operation and support (O&S) costs. The AGT1500 engines currently in the Abrams, with their late 1960s technology, have experienced declining reliability and inconsistent maintainability. In addition to increased readiness, the LV100 will reduce Abrams O&S costs by more than two-thirds through:

    * Improved component reliability and durability
    * Accessible components for ease of maintenance
    * Low parts count - a 43% reduction from the AGT1500
    * 33% reduction in fuel consumption
    * On-board electronic diagnostics and health monitoring
    * On-board electronic log book, or data memory module

    The LV100 is also selected to power the Army's redesigned Crusader artillery system. The engine is lighter and smaller than the current Crusader engine and will provide the vehicle improved mobility and increased performance. The LV100 is a "one can" solution for both the Abrams and Crusader - establishing a commonality of tools, training, maintenance and support.

    well, 33% less fuel.. that should mean about 9.768l/km.
    which is only 3l more than the leopard. imagine what the next iteration of development may bring...
    when you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth
    A.C Doyle
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  19. #18 What if Gun powder was Fuel 
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    Its because of the solid powder which may result in blockades in the engines combustion, but if gun powder was converted in fuel, can we succeed ?
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  20. #19  
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    M1 tank is designed to burn diesel...though it will burn other stuff...like gas or Jack Daniels if necessary.

    --

    The 50 cal machine was hilariousness...but yes it could be considered a type of engine. (and that one doesn't have the safety mod...lol). What a great show if Myth Busters had started with an MG--I bet they could have done something with that...if only it was the bald dude firing off the back and using recoil to propel a dune buggy or something. (an old quad 50 would be even better
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  21. #20  
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    The attempted solid fueled engins which were trying to produce usable rotational motion failed primarily in the fuel-into-combustion chamber phase. The "fuel injection" failed.
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  22. #21  
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    Didn't Rudolf Diesel initially try to build his engines to run on powdered coal? I don't know if it ever actually worked with that as a fuel but coal dust and air can and does explode - cheaper than making special propellants. In the past blank rounds were used as starters for internal combustion engines - the powder wasn't fed into the combustion chamber directly, just the propellant gases. It certainly managed to make the engines turn. I also recall a Jerry Pournelle story "King David's Spaceship" that used artillery for propulsion - and that it was an 'ancient' idea that hadn't taken off so to speak, probably true. So, yes, it's possible, but why?
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