BMW unveils the turbosteamer concept
Source: bmwgroup.com / gizmag.com
More efficiency instead of power loss
BMW Group Research and Engineering has combined heat and power to improve performance
and efficiency in a car for the first time
Enhancing efficiency by up to 15 percent feasible through the principle of the
Munich. Using an innovative concept, BMW Group Research and Engineering has
succeeded in harnessing the biggest and as yet untapped source of energy in
the car: Heat. Combining an innovative drive assist with a 1.8 liter BMW four-cylinder
engine on the test rig reduced consumption by up to 15 percent while generating
nearly 14 additional horsepower. At the same time, up to 15 lb-ft more torque
was measured. This increased power and efficiency comes free of charge. The
reason is that the energy is derived exclusively from the waste heat present
in the exhaust gases and cooling system and doesn’t cost you a single
drop of fuel. The research project meets all the conditions espoused by the
philosophy of BMW Efficient Dynamics – lower emissions and consumption
combined with more dynamic driving and performance.
Up to fifteen percent greater overall efficiency for the gas engine.
The Turbosteamer – as the project is known – is based on the principle
of the steam engine: Fluid is heated to form steam in two circuits and this
is used to power the engine. The primary energy supplier is the high-temperature
circuit which uses exhaust heat from the internal combustion engine as an energy
source via heat exchangers. More than 80 percent of the heat energy contained
in the exhaust gases is recycled using this technology. The steam is then conducted
directly into an expansion unit linked to the crankshaft of the internal combustion
engine. Most of the remaining residual heat is absorbed by the cooling circuit
of the engine, which acts as the second energy supply for the Turbosteamer.
This innovative drive assist verifiably increases the efficiency of the combined
drive system by up to 15 percent. “The Turbosteamer reinforces our confidence
that the internal combustion engine is undoubtedly a technology fit for the
future,” comments Professor Burkhard Göschel, Member of the Board
of Management responsible for development and purchasing at BMW AG.
Adequate space in today’s vehicle concepts.
The development of this new drive assist has reached the phase involving comprehensive
tests on the test rig. The components for this drive system have been designed
so that they are capable of being installed in existing model series. Tests
have been carried out on a number of sample packages to ensure that a car such
as the BMW 3 Series provides adequate space. The engine compartment of a four-cylinder
model offers enough space to allow the expansion units to be accommodated.
System ready for volume production within ten years
Ongoing development of the concept is focusing initially on making the components
simpler and smaller. The long-term development goal is to have a system capable
of volume production within ten years.
The big picture: project BMW Efficient Dynamics.
BMW Group Research and Engineering has demonstrated the medium-term perspectives
of the project BMW Efficient Dynamics. “This project resolves the apparent
contradiction between consumption and emission reductions on the one hand and
performance and agility on the other,” is how Professor Burkhard Göschel
summarizes the core concept of the programme. The BMW Group is committed to the
principle that a reduction in consumption amounting to a few percentage points
over the entire model range exerts higher overall effects on the general population
than high percentage points for a niche model. BMW is focusing on making the latest
technologies for reduced consumption accessible to as many people as possible.