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Stirling Engine (Term Paper Sample)

what is a heat engine/history of stirling engine/ how it functions and works/ what it is used in/ where it got the name stirling/ why was is it better than other heat engines /what is a stirling engine / i also need to know the sources source..

Stirling Engine,
Author`s Name,
A heat engine is a system that converts heat energy to mechanical work. It is made up of a cyclic system that absorbs heat from a high temperature source to a low temperature sink so as to generate mechanical energy. The heat engine functions by delivery of heat energy to a gas which expands and pushes a piston thus performing mechanical work. After performing work it is then recycled through a cyclic system to be used in the next cycle (West, 1970).
The efficacy of the machine is restricted by Carnot`s theorem. The link between heat and work is described by thermodynamics. There are two laws applicable in thermodynamics. The first law deals with the "application of preservation energy to the system". The second law deals with the energy flow and the maximum achievable efficiency of the machine.
Carnot`s theorem was developed in 1820 by Sadi Carnot. This theorem is based on the fact that in heat engine consist of a heat source and a cooling agent. When the heated gas is cooled, it loses its potential energy which converted to mechanical work by the heat energy. He argued that there was then an absolute zero temperature from which the caloric gas would lose all its potential energy. However, if the machine is only able to attain half the absolute zero temperature, the caloric gas will then lose half of its potential energy. Thus the efficiency of a heat engine is restricted to its ability to attain the absolute zero temperature from which the caloric gas will lose its maximum potential energy. This means that the greater the temperature difference between the high and low temperatures, the greater the potential energy lost and thus more mechanical work (Organ, 1997).
Although the application of heat engines is limited by Carnot`s theory, it has been widely used as the heat source used to provide the thermal engine can be powered by different forms of energy. These include the use of friction, combustion, energetic particles and absorbing from light energy. The total energy generated is measured in kilowatts per litre of energy displacement. The total energy generated indicates the maximum power produced by the engine (Hirata, 1997).
Application of the heat engines includes the Stirling engine, steam engine and the petrol engine used in cars. Today they are used in various home appliances for example refrigerators and other coolant devices. There are various developments that have been made on these engines so as to maximum the temperature difference and generate maximum energy. Different caloric fluids used include: gases, liquids and solids.
The Stirling engine belongs to category of engines. They are engines which employ a closed cycle system. This implies that the air that they use in their system is never used up, but re-used over and over without dumping into the environment as exhaust. It is a heat engine that operates by cyclic expansion and compression of gases such as...
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