Sunday, August 12, 2007

Coffee-Powered Steam Engine

From Boing Boing:

The revolutionary concept for this hot-air engine was discovered in 1816 by the Scottish minister Robert Stirling and has been updated for today. The principle is as ingenious as it is simple: In a sealed cylinder, heated from the underside, a piston pushes the enclosed air back and forth between the hot and the cold side. The air therefore expands out and compress together every cycle and that movement is converted via a moving piston and crankshaft into rotary motion.


Set this fully functional Stirling engine on a cup with boiling hot coffee (Tea or water also works of course) - give the flywheel a small push to the left - and the apparatus begins simply to pump up and down - for up to an hour!

When I've got 21 Euros to blow I'll have a new coffee toy to wow the kiddies!