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Micro Turbines the size of coat buttons!

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Micro Turbines the size of coat buttons!

Old 10-19-2004, 02:04 PM
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Default Micro Turbines the size of coat buttons!

MIT is developing micro turbine engines for powering small electronic devices. The turbine ise the size of a coat button and spins more than 1 million rpmHere's an interesting snippet from the article on the topic.

...It could run for ten or more hours on a container of diesel fuel slightly larger than a D battery; when the fuel cartridge ran out, a new one could be easily swapped in. Each disposable cartridge would pack as much energy as a few heavy handfuls of lithium-ion batteries. As a result, a small pack of the cheap and light cartridges could power a PDA or cell phone through several days of heavy usage, no wall-outlet recharging required—a highly attractive feature for soldiers in remote locations or travelers. What’s more, the miniature turbine takes up about a quarter of the volume of a typical cell-phone battery.

Not that a micro engine is without drawbacks. It would shoot a tiny stream of hot exhaust gas, for one thing, making it more suitable for devices clipped to belts or carried in briefcases than for those stuffed in pockets. The engine itself would get hot, though an exhaust suppressor would easily keep devices from getting much warmer than they do today. But for many energy-hungry applications, says Epstein, a tiny turbine’s remarkable power output would far outweigh any disadvantages. Suggests Epstein, “You don’t need a very good jet engine to do better than batteries.”

It's application so far is for an energy source to replace batteries, but I bet we'll hear more about this in the years to come. It's 4 years into the future but the application for Micro RC would be amazing!
Old 10-19-2004, 02:33 PM
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Default RE: Micro Turbines the size of coat buttons!

There was a small segment on the science channel the other day about these. Not much info, but they showed some of the components and they were tiny!

Old 11-20-2004, 12:26 AM
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Default RE: Micro Turbines the size of coat buttons!

I don't think something like that will ever replace batteries, but it may finally bring turbines to the masses. $50 turbines will rock!

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