Stirling Engines - the power of the future?

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Stirling engines are having a bit of a revival. What are they, and how do they work? Could they generate our electricity in the future?
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I like machines that show their workings. You can see all the parts of a stirling engine doing their jobs. Stirling engines are simple, but use a principle that may be unfamiliar to many viewers. One thing that you have to remember from your science classes is that gases expand and contract very rapidly indeed, making this sort of engine practical.
Stirling engines are not very powerful nor do they have great power to weight ratios. I know of one annual boat race that takes place in England on a river using stirling engines, and it is somewhat sedate.
Lindybeige: a channel of archaeology, ancient and medieval warfare, rants, swing dance, travelogues, evolution, and whatever else occurs to me to make.
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28 ноя 2016

stirlingengineenginespowerelectrictygenerationgeneratorgeneratinghow it worksmechanicshot airenergyecologicalenvironmentally friendlycheapemissionsexhauststation




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Комментарии 4 675
Thethomafisk 17 часов назад
These would (theoretically) be great in a hot climate, leave the top plate exposed to the sun and have the bottom plate buried far enough under ground to have a wide gap in the temperature range.
Ilaria Alexyos
Ilaria Alexyos 2 дня назад
Un motore stirling sul fondo dell'oceano, che sfrutta una sorgente idrotermale come punto caldo e l'acqua a zero gradi circostante come punto freddo!
John Amy
John Amy 2 дня назад
Better explanations available on you tube.
ŠP 3 дня назад
Aaaahhh .... Stirlingpunk you say?!
Scorch mark
Scorch mark 5 дней назад
They are using sterling engines in nuclear powered spacecraft now, well, designing and testing probes that use them. It’s so compact and brilliant and efficient on the exact scale needed for these things.
Chris Davies
Chris Davies 6 дней назад
NASA is even thinking about using Stirling engines on a massive Radioisotope Thermal Generator for a Martian outpost, instead of Peltier devices. I have no idea how much plutonium you'd need for that, but it seems to me like a small nuclear reactor is safer and more useful.
Ian Rivlin
Ian Rivlin 6 дней назад
Quick couple of questions:- Don't the displacer's top and bottom surfaces finally reach equilibrium and end up at the same temperature? - ie reducing its insulating function? Shouldn't this setup include a fan to blow air across the cool surface (assuming it's the bottom that's heated). That would increase the cooling of the top area, thereby increasing the temperature differential and improving efficiency?
Paul Brown
Paul Brown 7 дней назад
There is a product currently being marketed on Amazon using this concept. It is a fan designed to use on top of a wood burning stove to help circulate the air heated by the stove without using electricity.
Howard King
Howard King 7 дней назад
This guy is fun to watch. He's zany as well as intelligent and also instructive (as long as he leaves out his politics). I love his weapon videos.
Howard King
Howard King 7 дней назад
Is it possible to make a multi-cylinder Sterling? What would be the advantages, if any, and the disadvantages? At higher speeds, it might run smoother. Of course, the power would still be a function of the heat differential.
Howard King
Howard King 7 дней назад
The submarine application is Interesting. In a science fiction scenario, you could run a Sterling on the heat differential between the sun's heat and the super-cold environment of space, couldn't you? It would cost a fortune to get it up there; but it would not need fuel, and it could put out an enormous amount of power.
Nahuel Dominguez
Nahuel Dominguez 8 дней назад
best intro in the entire chanel
Gary Geiser
Gary Geiser 8 дней назад
OK, now I know a little more about a Sterling engine. I expected it to be made of 92.5% silver. But, alas - nothing nearly that interesting. You are humorous but what a boring topic!
Sleepy Dog
Sleepy Dog 8 дней назад
haha.... sterling sterling stirling stirling engine....
HalfPrimeGaming 9 дней назад
Your videos are brilliantly entertaining! 😁
Edward Blair
Edward Blair 10 дней назад
And if it was used to evenly distribute the milk in your cup of tea, it would be "a sterling sterling Sterling sterling stirring engine".
mike newell
mike newell 10 дней назад
great but what the fook would it be used to power ??
Etheoma 10 дней назад
Sorry haven't finshed the video but yeah I understood the second you said there was ice in it that it means that there is a temperature gradient between the outside and the inside so work can be done, it doesn't partiulcarly matter in which direction the tempeture gradient is whether it be below ambient or above apart from the fact that temperatures on earth range from approximately 223K to 323K so there is more room upward than there is downward which the higher the temperature gradient the more energy you can get out. So that is why using cold to generate power would be kind of dumb and that it's easier to heat things up than it is to cool them down.
Alex Tourigny
Alex Tourigny 10 дней назад
Sterling Engines were useless for their lack of thrust. That's why they were never used very much during the industrial revolution. They may be pollution efficient, but not good for much else than looking at in the real world. Peace !
Mr. Octopus
Mr. Octopus 11 дней назад
Great invention. You would have best results with silver plates I guess.
Mike Christopherson
Mike Christopherson 13 дней назад
I'm curious about why the spokes are curved on the flywheel. Is there a practical reason or just aesthetics?
Art 13 дней назад
Liam Sweeney
Liam Sweeney 13 дней назад
And it's another Englishman failing to mention the fact that a scotsman invented something and lumping him in as a Brit knowing full well that Scottish people feel more Scottish than they do British. This is one of the main reasons Scots hate the English. It's a symptom of the complete disregard for Scottish culture and history. You may think I'm being over the top but it annoys Scots because the English prove this to be true at every opportunity. (84% of Scottish people feel 'very strongly Scottish' whilst only 26% feel 'very strongly British' in a 2015 YouGov poll.)
mikeos1 3 дня назад
When Andy Murray loses a match he is a Scottish player, but whe he wins he becomes "British Tennis Champion, Andy Murray" Sorry that's just how it is!
guacamole 14 дней назад
ARE YOU KIDDING ME? these exist and humans burn coal and gasoline. That makes me beyond angry. Holly hell I dont think I've ever been so mad I'm my life.
guacamole 14 дней назад
I just figure out how to make free energy put these in boats and put black paint on the top to absorb the suns heat and the bottom would be cooled by the water. Or to power citys bury the bottom so its cooler and let the sun heat up the top. Am I right on double right? We could make free energy for the entire world and it would take littlerlly no fuel other then the and 0 emissions
guacamole 14 дней назад
Like for real why would humans ever make nuclear power plants when these exist
K L 15 дней назад
I like the Playschool approach.
Cr Hu
Cr Hu 15 дней назад
Marine & space use of these is inevitable ...if you could make these on Mars a few thermal solar reflectors could run all pumps & fans, and the heat differential your living habitat necessarily must have, would generate a bit of mechanical power as long as any human was alive inside. A complete machine ecosystem could arrive first to make Stirlings out of local materials then build up compressed CO2 for more bursty power needs including machine assembly. Supply ships just send parts the robots can't make locally, like any colony it grows with support from its home base. A sealed compressed air cavern from which oxygen is separated out from C02 would be ideal living habitat for early colonists. So a series of these used first for power storage but carved nicely by robots inside the airlocks for eventual human needs could have a town like Petra ready for the day the humans arrived, complete with skylights & well tested airlocks the robots had to use for years in the high C02 atmosphere. Nicely over-engineered with even tiny leaks found & sealed & ready for the far lower pressure Earth like mix atmosphere.
Granville Bennet
Granville Bennet 16 дней назад
alan connelly
alan connelly 16 дней назад
No very inefficient old tech well I astits usabity time.
Richard Harris
Richard Harris 17 дней назад
I find your lack of a kettle disturbing, Englishman! Otherwise, excellent video.
Drunk Cat Phil
Drunk Cat Phil 17 дней назад
Sooo build a big one in Iceland and use geothermal for heat and the natural shit fucking coldness (technical term) of the Icelandic winter and bingo! We can have a really big spinny thingy... sort of
Ob Fuscated
Ob Fuscated 17 дней назад
They are ancient tech and certainly useful in niche applications. If you study where they are NOT used you'll understand why they aren't more popular! It's not as if the engineering world is unaware of them. They are not in any way obscure. If you are interested in building one they are popular hobby machinist projects. Google "Stirling engine kit" if you want to buy one to play with. Some kits are very inexpensive.
Michael Sanches
Michael Sanches 17 дней назад
A couple of ideas: Today (Antarctica and other permafrost areas) - Even without volcanic heat, one could have a mirror array all pointed to the hot plate. This is how the first solar electricity generation power plant worked (Dagget, California). They had hundreds of mirrors all pointed toward a steam boiler. It was solar powered to run a giant steam turbine. Future - One problem that people are worried about is getting rid of heat in space colonies. This excess heat could be used to run Stirling engines.
W3X0R 17 дней назад
Why did he not use a kettlle ?
Peter Krawczyk
Peter Krawczyk 17 дней назад
fuel burn in cobustion engine, it does not explode
Chimp Chowder
Chimp Chowder 17 дней назад
These were abandond for a long long time. And this external combustion engine is very weak. While the internal combustion engine can generate huge amounts of energy with a very small amount of contraption. So now we are so dumbed down and environmentaly fearful that people are willing to run backwards...... To a STERLING MOTOR? THEY WERE ABANDOND IN THE 1800'S THAT SHOULD TELL YOU SOMETHING. Yes they could be used for some lame ass Brittish lame dick project. But not for anything worth much. In other words ITS LITTLE MORE THAN A TOY!
Hames Stell
Hames Stell 18 дней назад
"Heat gradient," I think you mean temperature voltage.
Typhoon Ninja
Typhoon Ninja 19 дней назад
Would this engine work with liquid hydrogen or dry ice? Since the change in temprature is so far apart wouldnt it make this engine spin really fast? Or am i wrong about this? Let me know lol maybe someone should try it?
IPman77 19 дней назад
Thanks, great video and great potential!
Ps4 all the way
Ps4 all the way 20 дней назад
? Sterling engine in space
Barnie Smarny
Barnie Smarny 20 дней назад
if their is diminished traditional energy like coal or gas. i like wave energy as a new form. basically its a see (sea) saw powered by force of waves to work a piston or mechanisms to turn a turbine.
Matthew Molloy
Matthew Molloy 20 дней назад
Oh the joy of an old lindybeige video. The artistey of the transitions, the eternal love song to the color beige, and the curiously fascinating information.
anton haeffler
anton haeffler 20 дней назад
I'm currently writing a paper on a Swedish energy company which uses stirling engines to take advantage of excess gasses from heavy mining operations. Normally these gases are too "rough" to be used so they are just burned straight into the air. Since the stirling engine only needs a temperature difference, it can operate using the heat created from the burning of these excess gasses. Therefor, a lot of energy that was previously wasted can now be turned into electricity. It's really interesting how something so simple can work. I think this technology has huge potential for the future.
Tyson Breznicki
Tyson Breznicki 20 дней назад
Wouldn't putting one of these on your house defeated the purpose of well... It? I would heat when hot and cool when cold. You would have to consume energy at a higher rate to offset the temperature difference more than what is being produced. I mean maybe that one day when it changes temperature over night and you decide it's nicer outside, but would it even be worth it at that point. They would have to be built in to the central air just to have a net gain once in a blue moon wouldn't they?
Tyson Breznicki
Tyson Breznicki 14 дней назад
+Chris Stratford I know, I have both but thanks.i was thinking for the natural gas flame that is left on. I'd think these would be more effective on the back of a fridge where the heat is unwanted.
Chris Stratford
Chris Stratford 15 дней назад
+Tyson Breznicki a flame licker (or flame eater anyway) is an atmospheric engine that cooles the hot flame in the cylinder and uses the reduced pressure to move the cylinder. they are generally low pressure and low power density.. Everyone saying this engine is impractical: this engine is to a working stirling as a pinwheel is to a jet engine.
Tyson Breznicki
Tyson Breznicki 16 дней назад
+Chris Stratford that is logical. Like a flame licker?
Chris Stratford
Chris Stratford 16 дней назад
most houses use hot water in summer or winter. A Stirling engine use the heat at 1000F from burning natural gas to heat water to 130F. The heat flowing through the engine over that temperature difference can produce electric power, which is fed back into the grid or used on site. A stirling cycle machine is also basically a heat pump, and could be used as one although there aren't many examples of. Ther eis also a villumier (sp?) cycle machine that is an engine and a heat pump arranged back to back, so you can have a fuel powered refrigerator.
mrbasilman 21 день назад
Excellent video
movax20h 21 день назад
Well, they do have emissions you need heat from somewhere, usually burning something. They are used in some submarines, and in some solar powered generators. Also in reverse it can be used to generate low temperatures and liquify gases
mrjaz666 21 день назад
You might be interested to know that NASAs planned nuclear reactor for space probes will use 6 Sterling engines to turn the reactor heat into electrical energy.
Henry Statitovski
Henry Statitovski 22 дня назад
So British. When he coughs, he takes the time to write 'Excuse me' on the screen. Awesome.
guinness77100 24 дня назад
Sure it turns. But how much load can it handle before stalling? Very cool video.
Don Neale
Don Neale 24 дня назад
so after looking up more information on these things....it sounds nice but is not practical at all and the whole point of having this kind of engine is 300% invalidated by the exponetial negitives in building it.....not to mention just how big the thing has to be in order to be useful
John Salmons
John Salmons 24 дня назад
What a dude, don't get any more inspirational for me, his face when the engine suddenly went quiet and then noisy, fascination at it's cusp, awesome! Lloyd is it? Keep 'em coming Sunshine!
rich t mason
rich t mason 25 дней назад
Yellowstone or the Geothermal in Iceland?
Norman Wang
Norman Wang 25 дней назад
Do "Good". My high school physics teacher would have smacked me on the head if I had wrote "good" instead of "work" on my exam.
Mathew Orman
Mathew Orman 25 дней назад
The future is Orman Force Drive: Electromagnetic mobility for all... No noise, no pollution and green energy security for ever... No need for roads, shoes, tires everything levitates using just small amount of electric energy to compensate ohmic loses... Works everywhere including vacuum of space and only needs electric energy converting it to kinetic trough use of Orman Force... Amazing fact is that this invention was possible in Tesla times... @
Griffin Giles
Griffin Giles 25 дней назад
A great idea overall, and just goes to show you that older ideas can still hold weight. However, I think it wouldn't be much use in space due to the lack of air for there to be a temperature differential. The design could be possibly adapted for use in space. Maybe using solar wind in a manner similar to how solar sails can capture solar wind for propulsion. Plus, adding solar panels on it could further enhance power generation. It may be possible to apply the Stirling engine mechanism to tap into the fluctuations of virtual subatomic particles via the Casimir effect, but I think this would be very unlikely given the difficulties of extracting useful work from this form of energy. I'd imagine that such a design trying to use vacuum energy would impractically large and may not even break even.
Jonnie Luscombe
Jonnie Luscombe 25 дней назад
''another first for Britain'' ?? you mean the Stirling engine and the lightbulb and the telephone were not invented by a drug dealer's single mum on some project in South Compton LA who swears that the cracker is a POS and must totally die die die?
BlubberyOyster 4
BlubberyOyster 4 26 дней назад
I was eating ice cream during this...
Chris Stratford
Chris Stratford 26 дней назад
ruvid.net/video/видео-2mlqL4066v0.html Shows it being run, and being run in reverse. It can make liquid air, or it can make the engine head glow read hot.
jakobole 26 дней назад
How about Google in Finland not only use Stirlings, but Stirlings in SERIES to extract as musch heat as possible, each chamber designed for a specific temperature-range, thus maximizing efficiency even more....
K Deronimo
K Deronimo 27 дней назад
There are sterling engines submarines
hanbaal 28 дней назад
Curse you beige man, now i need one of these...
Mortimer Snurd
Mortimer Snurd 28 дней назад
He reminds me of a mad scientist
Boxcarz 29 дней назад
15:54 And people are worried about climate change from our oil and coal and such...
DEAN WATERS Месяц назад
Fine to have a small model as an executive desk toy, but in the old days even the huge versions didnt have much power Hayward Tyler Robinson, Phllips etc. The basic intention is that the engines are almost silent as the combustion takes place on the outside of the cylinder.
Bread Месяц назад
Do you know how to fix a squeak coming from Stirling Engine?
Jan Negrey
Jan Negrey Месяц назад
It's a done deal!
Brent Hill
Brent Hill Месяц назад
I first learned about the Stirling engine during the energy concerns of the 1970's and I have always believed it to be capable of making a contribution to our horsepower requirements. After all it can run on old newspapers, waste, sunlight and pretty much anything else that burns or produces heat. With appropriate soot scrubbers of course.
Steven Месяц назад
a silent drone bomb could be in its future.
David Voinier
David Voinier Месяц назад
Isn't the RN experimenting with a sterling engine to power a submarine?
Davidm. Byrd
Davidm. Byrd Месяц назад
Thank you for making this video.
Matt Sullivan
Matt Sullivan Месяц назад
Derpton 101
Derpton 101 Месяц назад
if we use volcanic activity and stuff wouldn't it be known as geothermal energy
PirateWhole Who
PirateWhole Who Месяц назад
best transition
ArcticTemper Месяц назад
I wonder if this could work on the Moon? Outdoors would be very cool and an insulated-indoor warm...
EC Kuhl
EC Kuhl Месяц назад
This is the kind of wacky useless knick knack that I throw my money at.
Barskor1 Месяц назад
A better Idea is gravity induced vacuum chambers and water with a hot chamber and a cold chamber with a steam turbine in between you could get the same effect of super heated steam running a generator at 40 c. You could power a city with three towers 30 meters tall and ten meters wide.
Gerald Nordahl
Gerald Nordahl Месяц назад
Las Vegas whores could suck for free.
dblenehan Месяц назад
Good one
Jason Markson
Jason Markson Месяц назад
I got bored after 9 minutes, (6 actually but I pushed myself to 9)
Funny Falabay
Funny Falabay Месяц назад
Big fan of this guys commentary style
Steve Thompson
Steve Thompson Месяц назад
Small issues liked massive horsepower and torque necessary to really run anything is way beyond reality of this. Very Cool High School Science project though.
F Huber
F Huber Месяц назад
Someone built a large ship that used a sterling engine for power... the designer said to expect 20+ knots. it barely made 3 knots top speed. The Stirling engine is essentially useless for any practical application.
Michael Crumpton
Michael Crumpton Месяц назад
Stirling engines might have a chance if solar was not getting so cheap.
Michael Szczys
Michael Szczys Месяц назад
I hate the way they take a half hour to tell you it’s basically a temperature difference engine.
Jan B.
Jan B. Месяц назад
The main problem with Sterling-engines is that you cant really use air for the cooling/heating, because its a pretty good insulator, which makes the engines a lot less convienient. Im not sure how a church could keep up a surfficient temperature gradient because of this and summer exists (no gradient between outside and inside). The serverroom-heat idea could work with the cooling hooked up to one plate and a heat sink on the outside, question is if thats economical. The submarine is a reasonable application. Im pretty sure the mirror idea is a lot less efficient than solar pannels, since stong sunshine leads to warm outside temperatures, t has the upside of needing less maintinence tough. There is powerplants based on the mirror idea, but using a steam turbine instead of a stirling-engine, which is more efficient (at least i think so, i havent looked that up). On volcanic powerplants: you need to get rid of a LOT of heat to use the engine efficciently (again air insulates). You could instead just pump down water and power a turbine with the steam (like it is done in volcanic areas tooday). Overall the stirling-engine isnt the best way to generate large amounts of power available to us right now, but it has some fringe applications (NASA put one on a space probe they send out to pluto because the sun shines at 0.1% brightness there). But I dont know what the future holds for the power supply of our civilisation, maybe serling-engines will play an imortant role in the future. Cheers, A guy who attended some lectures on thermodynamics
sirha konik
sirha konik Месяц назад
Beginning made you a vsauce of history
M Goudsmits 金马桥
M Goudsmits 金马桥 Месяц назад
we used sterling engines for cooling the thermal imaging sensor for our tank night vision cameras around 1987. when you drive the engine from outside it will cool down on one side
valveman12 Месяц назад
To get any usable power from a sterling engine, it would have to be quite huge. Possible, yes. I believe Dean Kaman is experimenting with a large sterling engine.
jim Месяц назад
instead of burying chambers deep in the ground near volcanic areas in the antartic why not reverse the process. instead of seeking the heat side of the process from the ground seek the heat from the surface.....i.e. bury the cold plate in the ice and heat the hot plate with lense focused sunlight on the surface...or is that a crap idea? i dont know.
The Riverwood Trader
The Riverwood Trader Месяц назад
I wonder how much more efficient and practical one of these is compared to a solar panel array.
52RH Flight
52RH Flight Месяц назад
5:26 Not enough hot air on the top plate ... talk faster. That is the original name ... the Stirling Air Engine, and the majority of the original engines built were ... hot air engines.
Martin O'Donnell
Martin O'Donnell Месяц назад
At 6:00 you said it was producing about 1W of energy. Should have been 1W of power
nibus9 Месяц назад
Is it possible to hook a magnetocaloric heat producing system to the stirling engine ?
sbarnett37tiger Barnes
sbarnett37tiger Barnes Месяц назад
Video starts at 7:12
AnAceism Месяц назад
thermal generators seem a better way to go
Evading Grid
Evading Grid Месяц назад
Commercial Stirling engines internally use a gas ( I forget which) but its got better thermal properties and increases the power significantly.
DavidFMayerPhD Месяц назад
Great improvements in power to weight (materials) are needed to bring the Stirling Engine into the big time. Cost is proportional to material weight.
Martin Roberts
Martin Roberts Месяц назад
Simple example of 'Round and round went the bloomin' great wheel, ahh hmm...'.
DiyEcoProjects Месяц назад
Hi... those things would be good on a burner chimney and winter snow conditions
Nameless Cynic
Nameless Cynic Месяц назад
Never heard of these before. Why I enjoy your videos.
Ryne Hansen
Ryne Hansen Месяц назад
what's with the 622 dislikes
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