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A rotating piston engine for generator in serial hybrid system for use in light aircraft

The development of aviation structures indicate, especially with regard to light aircraft, the use of electric propulsion more and more often. This solution has negative consequences: the low density of energy accumulated in the batteries limits the range and duration of the flight, which in turn limits the operational parameters of the aircraft. The improvement of said parameters can be done by increasing the weight of the batteries, which at the expense of reducing the payload of the aircraft, which also limits its operational value. Another way to improve the operational parameters of the aircraft is the use of mixed drives in the serial hybrid system: an internal combustion engine driving the generator of electric energy stored in the battery supplying the electric propulsion of the aircraft. With reference to these trends, the article presents research related to the selection of an internal combustion engine for cooperation with an electric generator. Due to its compact dimensions and high power-to-weight ratio, a rotating piston engine was chosen. The electric motor was selected and the scope of cooperation of said system components was presented. The cooperation of both components was analyzed. The article ends with a summary of the research and presentation of conclusions.
Topic: Hybrid and electric powertrains
Author: Maciej Kalwara
Co-authors: Michał Kuźniar