It is So Tempting to Let This Stirling Engine Powered Helicopter Lift Off.
Maybe the World’s First ( and last? ) Stirling Engine Powered Helicopter.
The Stirling heat engine is just that, an engine that runs from external heat sources. The heat can be applied with say a burner or scavenged from waste heat from an industrial process such as paint ovens or kilns. Another interesting use of the Stirling engine is to use focused rays from the sun as the heat source to power the engine and the engine motion to drive an electric generator. Using it in this way is known as one form of concentrated solar power generation.
Or you can use the Stirling engine to power a car or a train but keep in mind you need to provide an external heat source which will need to travel with your vehicle if you want to keep it moving. This would especially important in say a helicopter using a Stirling engine and propane burner.
In this video you will see a beautifully crafted stainless steel Stirling engine powered helicopter with shiny stainless steel blades. The engine turns the blades seamlessly but for the helicopter to take to the air it must leave it’s all important heat source.
What a dilemma. Maybe that is why no one has so far marketed a Stirling engine helicopter.