Axial Vector Engine (was DynaCam Engine.)

So, several years ago a coworker Jesse pointed me to an engine design I thought was very nifty, called DynaCam. It promised to revolutionize ICE performance. But never got developed. No substantial news from the company. So sad, another good idea dead in the water.

I searched for it again today, and found AVEC, a company apparently created solely to develop the technology. They have revamped the design, and are marketing a family of electricity generators. Not so bad.

There are some weaknesses though. The companies website is less than friendly and lacking useful information. Also, there’s many investors links about this company, and its… turbulent history, including key personnel. Doesn’t raise my faith much in them completing their goal.

It is really nifty technology. Imagine a double-ended piston, sitting in to cylinders at each end. This entity alone could act as a reciprocating linear engine, with energy savings over most Flat or V piston layouts. Of course the energy is hard to capture. But, put six of these double-ended pistons together, parallel to each other, forming a regular hexagon in its cross section. All of these are combined with a sinusoidal cam shaft, which ties into a central axle.

Yea… I wish I could easily draw CAD pictures to visualize this… but alas I am not skilled as such. I also tried to use the Wayback Machine to search for it, but the animation is not to be found. You can checkout aspects of the old webpage though.

Anyway, the results of prototypes have shown the dramatic performance differences. This is the best summary I can find so far. Per HP: it is lighter; produces more powerful torque, more efficient fuel usage, and less pollution; and can utilize a variety of heavy fuels. Quite a revolutionary product… if it can be brought to market.

M-hull watercraft design.

Came across this company that is developing a novel watercraft hull design. Originally designed to arrest the wake of the craft, it has evolved to include other principles of “captured air design”… which lead to a smoother ride, and an overall more efficient hull.

I find this nifty for many reasons. The first is how a very simple initial design goal (reduce the wake of the craft) has lead to orthogonal improvements as well; this is a great example of why creative & innovative efforts should always be undertaken… who would have thought technology as old as watercraft-hulls could see such a dramatic change.

Secondly, it just looks cool. It has a broad and square design more like a hovercraft, compared to traditional craft. The open cavities on the front (plenums) are reminiscent of jet-craft air-intakes. It looks more like something out of a space sci-fi movie or game (Wing Commander comes to mind.)

Anyway, I hope to see this idea in the future in some spy/military movie like James Bond, or maybe making waves (metaphorically speaking) in some publicly visible boat race / competition.