posted Oct. 9, 2010
updated Dec. 9, 2015
EcoMotors Establishes R&D Center with Hunan University to Develop opoc Technology in China
Allen Park, Mich., March 13, 2014 – EcoMotors, Inc., (EM), developer of the efficient, clean, lightweight and powerful opposed-piston opposed-cylinder (opoc®) engine technology, announced today that it has established a joint research and development center together with Hunan University (HNU) in Changsha to further develop and adapt their technology for the Chinese market.
The new center will be located at HNU’s Research Center for Advanced Powertrain Technology (RCAPT) and serve as a base for EM research and development in China. EM will provide funding to develop opoc engines and associated technologies, and adapt them to the local market. For its part, HNU will give EM use of the RCAPT’s engine testing and computational facilities, as well as other resources.
“As our first overseas R&D center, this partnership is an important step in the commercialization of our advanced technology and a sign of the importance this market plays in our global strategy.” said Amit Soman, EM’s president and chief operating officer. “At this center we will fine-tune products to meet the specific needs of the Chinese market and provide support for our other partners in China.”
Located in a province that serves as an industrial base for mechanical manufacturing, the center also will provide EM with access to top local talent. As part of the partnership, EM will give scholarships to graduate students at HNU’s research center, funding their work on the opoc technology. The most promising students will be sent to work at EM’s Shanghai office or other EM facilities.
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EcoMotors Quickens Its Pace, Acquires Michigan-Based Katech Manufacturing
Allen Park, Mich., March 12, 2014 – EcoMotors, Inc., (EM) announced today the purchase of Katech, Inc., the Michigan-based manufacturing company known for developing advanced engines and powertrains, adding additional expertise, manufacturing and testing capabilities to an already growing company.
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Katech has developed and produced technology for multiple automakers, including General Motors, Ford and Chrysler. Katech engines have also powered the famous GM Corvette Racing team that has dominated the U.S., and global GT racing circuits by capturing six championships and winning the legendary 24 Hours of LeMans six times.
Engine Production Expected To Begin In 2014 [2015?]
$200 Million Deal to Build OPOC Engine Plant
Xuancheng, Anhui, China and Allen Park, Michigan, April 9, 2013
Zhongding Power and EcoMotors today announced the closing of a commercial agreement to produce the opoc engine, a breakthrough technology that has the potential to be the world’s cleanest, most efficient, lightweight, and lowest cost internal combustion engine. One of the largest automotive component conglomerates in China, Zhongding will finance and construct the first opoc plant in the Anhui Province. The plant represents an investment by Zhongding of over US $200 million and will have a capacity of about 150,000 engines per year – over US $1 billion in revenue potential. High-volume production is expected to begin in 2014.
The opoc engine technology developed and owned by EcoMotors can deliver the same power level as conventional engines at half the size, a lower cost, and lower emissions. With the potential for 20-50% better fuel economy compared to a state-of-the-art, conventional turbo-diesel engine, EcoMotors’ opoc engine has the potential to revolutionize the internal combustion engine.
The inaugural opoc plant has received the full support of key Chinese government bodies, including the Xuangcheng government and Anhui provincial authorities; a second Zhongding production site may be announced at a later date. Zhongding plans to supply opoc engines to a broad range of customers, including GenSet engines, off-road and commercial vehicles. A key provision of the agreement allocates a portion of the plant’s output to EcoMotors for sale and distribution to its own direct customers.
full article at http://www.ecomotors.com/zhongding-power-signs-strategic-agreement-ecomotors-fund-construction-200-million-opoc%C2%AE-engine-plant
June 16th, 2011
EcoMotors struck a parntership with Generac (NYSE: GNRC) this week to jointly develop fuel-efficient, backup power generators.
“We’re going to work with Generac to qualify the EcoMotors opoc engine for applications in gen sets, or the power generation area. We’d expect to begin to see [generators equipped with our engines] on the market in 2013. We have engines in prototypes, now in a wide variety of applications.
EcoMotors claims its opoc engines are 15 to 50 percent more fuel efficient than traditional internal combustion engines, as well as smaller and lighter
March 9, 2011, Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA) named EcoMotors “Energy Innovation Pioneer”
Oct. 23, 2010
OPOC: Opposed Pistons, Opposed Cylinders
Bill Gates and fellow billionaire Vinod Khosla announced that they were investing $23 million in EcoMotors, a Michigan company that has promised to produce an engine that would convert far more of its fuel energy into useful work, and in doing so crack 100 mpg.
Oct. 22, 2010; Esquire Car Awards: Innovation of the Year: The OPOC Two-Stroke Engine
In its key operating range, a diesel OPOC could convert as much as 48 percent of its fuel’s energy into work, beating today’s best diesels. Moreover, an OPOC engine is just half the size and weight of a comparably powered conventional engine, which reduces the burden of moving its own mass.
ECOMOTORS SAYS ITS OPOC ENGINE COULD DELIVER ABOUT 45% GREATER FUEL EFFICIENCY
EcoMotors is developing engines that combine two OPOC “modules”-the two-cylinder, four-piston machine shown here. Under light loads, one module would shut down for a 30 percent boost in mileage. Former GM chief engineer and EcoMotors co-founder Don Runkle says that next year the company will publicly demonstrate a 300-horsepower OPOC diesel, but not necessarily in a car. Automakers aren’t the only potential customers: Earlier this year, Eurocopter unveiled a concept helicopter powered by two OPOCs. – Lawrence Ulric
The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) originally sponsored OPOC as a powerplant for the A160 Hummingbird UAV, but went with a turbine engine as a lower-risk solution for current test flights. However, L-3 reports strong interest from the UAV community both in the 325 hp M100 – which can be assembled into four-cylinder, 650 hp and six-cylinder, 975 hp configurations – and the small 85 cc, 10 hp S30 for mini-UAVs.
named 2011 Energy Innovation Pioneer by IHS Cambridge Energy Research Associates (CERA)
Allen Park, Michigan, March 9, 2011
In conjunction with the CERAWeek 2011 conference in Houston, EcoMotors has been named as a 2011 Energy Innovation Pioneer. IHS CERA annually selects innovators based on their potential as game changers or drivers of improvements in existing systems. CERAWeek 2011, highlighted by addresses from former presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton, among others, is dedicated to providing insight into the future of the global energy industry and to impacting decisions and policymaking.
“We are very proud to have been named as an Energy Innovation Pioneer and to participate in the CERAWeek 2011 forum,” said Don Runkle, CEO of EcoMotors. “This recognition not only underscores the revolutionary nature of our opoc engine, but also reflects our increasing momentum as OEMs like Navistar partner with us to commercialize this remarkable technology.”
EcoMotors a Finalist in Auto News’ PACE Awards
Allen Park, Mich., November 24, 2010 – EcoMotors opoc engine is a Finalist for the prestigious – Automotive News’ PACE award. The PACE (Premier Automotive Suppliers’ Contribution to Excellence) awards are selected annually from among the automotive supplier community and recognize practical innovation in the automotive marketplace.
This year thirty-five innovations qualified as finalists for the PACE Awards. EcoMotors opoc is the first and only new engine architecture to be a finalist in the history of the PACE Awards…a remarkable achievement.
“We’re very proud to be a finalist for the PACE awards,” said Don Runkle, CEO of EcoMotors “but we are not surprised, the awards recognize practical innovation and that is one of the defining characteristics of our engine.”
Established in early 2008, EcoMotors is quickly achieving critical mass in terms of changing the landscape of internal combustion power. Based in Allen Park, Mich., EcoMotors is commercializing the unique opoc engine for use in cars, light trucks, commercial vehicles, aerospace, marine, agriculture, auxiliary power units, generators, etc. Anywhere conventional gas or diesel power is currently utilized, opoc represents a better propulsion solution.
The two primary investors in EcoMotors are Khosla Ventures and Bill Gates. Khosla Ventures offers venture assistance, strategic advice and capital to entrepreneurs. The firm helps entrepreneurs extend the potential
of their ideas in breakthrough scientific work in clean technology areas such as solar, battery, high efficiency engines, lighting, greener materials like cement, glass and bio-refineries for energy and bio-plastics, and other environmentally friendly technologies as well as traditional venture areas like the Internet, computing, mobile and silicon technology arenas. Vinod Khosla founded the firm in 2004 and was formerly a General Partner at Kleiner Perkins and founder of Sun Microsystems. Khosla Ventures is based in Menlo Park, California.
Bill Gates, Vinod Khosla invest in low-cost, low-emission automotive engine
19 July 2010 , Written by Dhruv Tanwar
EcoMotors has secured “Series B” funding from two of the most prominent investors it could find, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates and Vinod Khosla of Khosla Ventures and the co-founder of Sun Microsystems, a company acquired recently by Oracle. News reports pegged the amount funded at $23.5 million, though EcoMotors did not comment on the value.
EcoMotors International CEO Don Runkle announced that his company has secured substantial Series B funding, which would be sufficient to complete engineering and testing of the Opposed-Piston Opposed-Cylinder, or OPOC engine. The company said Khosla and Gates invested in the company sharing the belief in the global potential of the opoc technology and its potential disruptive impact on modern transportation emissions because of its cost effectiveness.
This design configuration eliminates the cylinder-head and valve-train components of conventional engines, offering an efficient, compact and simple core engine structure, resulting in a type of engine that is lighter, more efficient and economical, with lower exhaust emissions compared with conventional designs.
the EM100 diesel model, which has a cylinder bore size of 100mm and weighs 134 kilogrammes, it is capable of producing 325hp at 3500rpm along with an incredible 900Nm of torque.
After six months of testing, we present this year’s winner – and some very honorable mentions. By Sam Smith
EcoMotors CEO Don Runkle hauls around America … a forty-pound motor that generates up to ten thousand kilowatts of energy. That’s enough to power a home, on a fraction of the fuel that a typical engine would need. Enough to convince many executives that the Engine That Changes Everything may have finally arrived.
Where typical engines have one piston per cylinder, hammering up and down like a fist against a ceiling, the OPOC – which was designed by a former chief powertrain engineer at Volkswagen – has two pistons per cylinder that come together and pull apart like hands clapping. The pistons travel only half as far, meaning they can complete a cycle twice as fast, which lets OPOC generate twice the power of an equivalent standard engine – the same power in a package half the size. Further innovations in fuel delivery and exhaust and the innate efficiency advantages of the two-stroke cycle mean the system offers, conservatively, 50 percent reduction in fuel usage with no reduction in power, no increase in emissions, weight savings of 50 percent, and cost savings of 20 percent.
Aviation company Eurocopter is pursuing a diesel version that would be the most fuel-efficient helicopter engine ever.
WARRENVILLE, Ill., Feb. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/
development agreement between EcoMotors and International brand commercial and military trucks, MaxxForce brand diesel engines, IC Bus brand school and commercial buses, and Monaco RV brands of recreational vehicles.
Navistar Continues to Deliver Customer-Focused Solutions by Working with EcoMotors to Commercialize this Innovative, Cutting-Edge Powertrain
Navistar International Corporation (NYSE: NAV) is a holding company whose subsidiaries and affiliates produce International brand commercial and military trucks, MaxxForce brand diesel engines, IC Bus brand school and commercial buses, Monaco RV brands of recreational vehicles, and Workhorse brand chassis for motor homes and step vans. The company also provides truck and diesel engine service parts. Another affiliate offers financing services. Additional information is available at www.Navistar.com/newsroom.
WARRENVILLE, Ill., Feb. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire/ — Navistar International Corporation (NYSE: NAV) today announced it has reached a development agreement with EcoMotors International in support of the company’s opoc (Opposed-Piston, Opposed-Cylinder) engine architecture.
EcoMotors International’s first product targeted for commercial application is a turbo-diesel version of the innovative opposed-piston, opposed-cylinder engine.
“We continue to be on the cutting edge of technology and our development agreement with EcoMotors once again demonstrates our commitment to develop new, innovative approaches to the commercial vehicle industry,” said Dan Ustian, Navistar chairman, president and chief executive officer. “Our company has a long history of pushing the envelope to deliver state-of-the-art, customer-focused solutions and we see great promise in EcoMotors’ breakthrough engine design.”
Khosla Ventures’ Vinod Khosla, EcoMotors’ primary investor along with Bill Gates, sees the Navistar-EcoMotors alliance as a reflection of the disruptive nature of the opoc technology.
“We are delighted that Navistar, a global leader in the commercial vehicle industry, has recognized the game-changing promise of opoc,” said Khosla. “The only truly disruptive technologies are those that can provide not only rapid payback but also economic and carbon benefits to large segments of the world’s population without the need for subsidies or massive infrastructure investments. Among next-generation propulsion systems, the opoc engine is broadly applicable and can provide lower carbon emissions than almost any other technology.”
Opposed-Piston, Opposed-Cylinder Engine with Modular Displacement Capability
EcoMotors’ patented engine design creates a ground-breaking internal combustion engine family architecture that will operate on a number of different fuels, including gasoline, diesel, natural gas and ethanol. The opoc’s new opposed piston-opposed cylinder direct gas exchange operation provides the well known emissions benefits of 4-cycle engines, the simplicity benefits of 2-cycle engines, the power density of the less well known opposed piston engine, and the extraordinary developments in electronics and combustion technology all tied together in a new and proprietary engine architecture.
“EcoMotors is proud to partner with Navistar to commercialize the revolutionary opoc engine,” said Don Runkle, CEO, EcoMotors International. “For customers such as Navistar, this remarkable engine technology represents a competitive advantage that enables not only enhanced environmental sustainability, but also greater profitability. Our engineers are working to effectively rejuvenate the internal combustion engine for the 21st century.”
The opoc engine comprises two opposing cylinders per module, with a crankshaft between them — each cylinder has two pistons moving in opposite directions. This innovative design configuration eliminates the cylinder-head and valve-train components of conventional engines, offering an efficient, compact and simple core engine structure. The result is an engine family that is lighter, more efficient and economical, with lower exhaust emissions.
EcoMotors’ opoc engine has a number of distinct advantages over traditional internal combustion engines. The opoc engine has very high power density of nearly one horsepower per pound resulting in an unprecedented lightweight and compact engine. The opoc engine is perfectly balanced enabling stackable power modules. This unique modular displacement capability is one of the long standing, but elusive goals of engine engineers’ quest for high efficiency. In addition, it also results in much less NVH than a conventional engine of comparable power. Its elegantly simple design allows for low cost, efficient manufacturing and increased operating durability:
50 percent fewer parts than a conventional engine
No cylinder heads or valve-train
Uses conventional components, materials and processes
“Consistent with our leadership strategy, Navistar continues to seek innovative products which differentiate us from the marketplace, while others embrace the status quo,” said Eric Tech, president, Navistar Engine Group.
The internal combustion piston engine has been the primary means of automotive propulsion for more than a century. Today, thousands of engineers around the world are hard at work trying to improve this 19th century invention. Some are striving to make incremental gains; some are hoping for a breakthrough. For all of them, one measuring stick is the “acid test” for any engine — power density. As greater power density is achieved, a range of critically important attributes will result, including:
Lower material costs
Greater fuel efficiency
Lower heat rejection
Electrically Controlled Turbocharger
EcoMotors’ intellectual property also includes an electrically controlled turbocharger technology which incorporates an electric motor in the turbo assembly to regulate boost pressure resulting in a long list of unique advantages:
Improved combustion efficiency to meet emissions
Electrically controlled variable compression ratio
Improved vehicle fuel economy
Enhanced vehicle drivability due to improved low-end torque
Eliminates Turbo lag
Waste heat recovery by generating electricity
Electrically Controlled Clutch
The development in clutch technology enables customers to take advantage of the engine’s modular displacement capability. The clutch assembly is housed between two engine modules, and is engaged when vehicle power demands require both modules to deliver power. When the power of the second module is not needed, the clutch is disengaged, allowing the second engine to stop completely. This not only improves fuel economy dramatically by reducing parasitic losses, but also improves the efficiency of the primary module.
About EcoMotors International
Established in early 2008, EcoMotors is changing the landscape of internal combustion power. Based in Allen Park, Mich., EcoMotors is commercializing the unique opoc engine for use in cars, light trucks, commercial vehicles, aerospace, marine, agriculture, auxiliary power units, generators, etc. Anywhere conventional gas or diesel power is currently utilized, opoc represents a better propulsion solution. The two primary investors in EcoMotors are Khosla Ventures and Bill Gates. Khosla Ventures offers venture assistance, strategic advice and capital to entrepreneurs. The firm helps entrepreneurs extend the potential of their ideas in breakthrough scientific work in clean technology areas such as solar, battery, high efficiency engines, lighting, greener materials like cement, glass and bio-refineries for energy and bio-plastics, and other environmentally friendly technologies as well as traditional venture areas like the Internet, computing, mobile and silicon technology arenas. Vinod Khosla founded the firm in 2004 and was formerly a General Partner at Kleiner Perkins and founder of Sun Microsystems. Khosla Ventures is based in Menlo Park, California.
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The first OPOC ?
The Bourke Engine
Invented by Russell Bourke in the 1920’s, one test model was 38 pounds, 30 cubic inches, 35 hp or more at 5,000 RPM, 76 hp at 10,000 rpm; successfully tested up to 20,000 rpm; Estimated up to 5 HP per cubic inch with Compression ratio up to 20:1; Fuel air ratio: 30:1 to 50:1