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Патент USA US2405359

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Aug- 5, 1945-
‘ '
s. L. G. KNOX
Filed Feb. 16, 1945
4 Sheets-Sheet 1
s. L‘. G. KNOX
‘ 2,405,359
Filed Feb. 16, 1945'
4‘Sheets-Sheet 2
' A. 6, 1.946.
s. |_. G. KNOX
Filed Feb. 16, 1945
4 Sheets-Sheet 5
6+ 3 a B1 . @7225";
Aug; a, 1946. -
' '
s, L, G, KNOX
Filed Feb. 16, 1945
4 Sheets-Sheet 4
Patented Aug. 6, 1946
Samuel Lippincott Griswold Knox,
New York, N. Y.
x “ . Application February 16, 1945, Serial ,No. 578,160
, 7 Claims. (o1.~121_V101)
This invention relates to improvements in elas- I
Figs.'4, 4a, 4b, 4c, 4d, 46’ are developed view
tic ?uid engines, and more particularly to recip
of a portion of the piston and sleeves as the latter
rocating engines operated by a compressed elastic
are seen from the interior of the piston, ‘showing
fluid such as steam in which the functions of the
progressive positions .of piston ports to sleeve
usual valves for controlling steam distribution are
ports through one-‘half. rotation of the crank
performed by'the piston which is given elliptical
the displacement of the sleeves correspond
motion in its cylinder.
ing- to counterclockwise rotation of the crank
In conventional reciprocating engines, distribu
shaft as viewed in Fig. 2.
tion of steam to the cylinder is controlled by
Fig. 5 is a view corresponding to Fig. 4, showing
valves operating with “angles of advance” rela 1.0 opposite displacement of the sleeves to effect op
tive to piston, thereby to admitv steam to the
posite operation of the engine.
cylinder and thereafter to effect steam cut-off so
that the expansion of the steam will be translated
As with other engines,‘ an engine according to
the present invention may be constructed with a
into useful mechanical work. The present inven
single cylinder or with multiple cylinders. How
tion has for its principal object the simpli?cation 15 ever, since a two-cylinder double acting arrange
of steam engine design and operation through the
ment represents the simplest self-starting con
provision of an engine which is valveless in the
struction, the following description will be based
sense that it has no valve, separate from the pis
on this type. It will be noted also that the in
ton, for controlling steam distribution, and in
vention is not limited to the vertical engine ar
which the functions of a valve in eifecting distri 20 rangement as illustrated.
bution are performed by the piston itself. More‘
Referring in detail to the drawings wherein like
speci?cally, the present invention provides a re
reference characters designate like parts
ciprocating engine in which the piston is given
throughout the several views, with the letters H
elliptical motion and wherein such motion is uti
and C designating head and crank end parts, re
lized, in conjunction with ported skirts on the 25 spectively, and thus differentiating opposite, sim
piston and ported sleeves which are interposed
ilarly numbered parts, the two-cylinder engine
between the piston and its cylinder, to effect the
shown comprises a cylinder block 6 having two
necessary steam distribution for either direction
elongated cylinder spaces, in each of which oper
of engine operation. According to a further fea
ates apiston l which, as shown in Fig. 2, is formed
ture of the invention, the ported sleeves afore 30 with‘ a long skirt 7H at its head end and a similar '
said are so constructed and arranged as to be dis
skirt '7C'at its crank end. A piston rod 8 con
placeable relatively to each other and to the pis
nects the pison to the cross head 9 and the latter
ton for the purpose of controlling the direction
is connected by connecting rod ill to the crank
of engine operation and also to regulate steam
shaft ll turning in bearings generally as shown.
35 The aforesaid engine parts are arranged as usual
Other objects will be in part obvious and in part
to convert the expansive force of the steam to
hereinafter pointed out in connection with the
rotative force on the crank shaft H. In Fig. ,2‘,
following analysis of this invention wherein is
reference characters, I2, I 3 designate, respec
illustrated an embodiment of the invention in
coaxially related head and crank end
40 sleeves which are interposed between the piston
In the drawings”
Fig. 1 is a part sectioned elevation of a two
cylinder engine according ‘to the invention taken
generally on line l-l of Fig. 2, which shows a
and its cylinder, the sleeves having their adjacent
ends lapped as shown and being mounted in the
cylinder block for angular (circumferential) dis
placement relative to each other and hence to the
typical engine arrangement of cylinder block, 45 piston l.
cross-head, connecting rod and crankshaft, and
Oscillating motion in addition to the usual
which moreover illustrates in detail the sleeve dis
of the piston is obtained by incor
placing mechanism of the present invention.
porating bevel gear teeth 14 built into‘ the con
Fig. 2 is a section ‘through. one cylinder of the
rod I0 which mesh with the teeth of a
engine taken on line 2--2 ofFig. 1, showing the 50 necting
bevel pinion sector [.5 which is a?ixed to the lower
piston in its head-end dead-center position, and
end of the piston rod 8. The teeth l4, 15 are
further illustrating sleeve mounting and arrange
located between the cross head and crank pin of
ment relative to piston according to the inven
the connecting rod I0, so that as the crankshaft
rotates, motion of the connecting rod in a plane
._Fig. 3 is a section taken'online 3--,3\"of Fig. 1. 55 transverse to vertical translation will produce
shown to be formed as parts of a unitary cast
ing secured to the cylinder block side. The cast
ing in its intermediate portion provides a bear
ing for a tubular sleeve 2'! mounted for both
partial rotation of the bevel sector l5 and there
fore of the piston rod 8 and piston ‘I. This 08
oillating rotational movement, combined with
the normal reciprocation of the piston rod, pro
duces piston motion such that any point of the
piston surface moves in a substantially elliptical
rotary and reciprocating motion, through the
bore of which extends valve stem 11a of poppet
valve ll. The tubular stem 21 is keyed to a
‘bevel segment, 28 meshing with a bevel pinion
Steam is supplied to the enginefrom any suit
29 journaled for'rotation about a ?xed axis hav
able source th'rough’a pipe IS, a poppet valve
I‘! controlling passage of steam from the pipe to 10 ing bearing in the chest"casting. The bevel
pinion is fast on a cylindrical pinion 30 (Fig. 3),
lower and upper chests 180, NH which communi-__
cate through branch pipes l8a, |8b (Fig. 1).‘, the teeth of which mesh with upper and lower
The chests open respectively into annular'vhea'de" racks- SIH, 31c, which are pivotally joined at
and crank end steam passages lBpI-I, l-9_C formed 7 theirends to studs 32H, 32C aihxed to the sleeves
in the cylinder wall. The latter passages poem-i"is 12,13, respectively. Thus, by reference to Fig. 1,
municate through openings _(not shown) provided, ,it will be observed that counterclockwise rota
nonvorthe bevel pinion 29 incident to leftwise
in the cylinder wall sides "with aTY'plurality of-'
turningv of sleeve 21 results in displacement of
head and crank end admission ports 201-1, 2516; I the
upper rack HR to the left and correspond
which are formed in the sleeves l2, l3,‘respéc‘-'
.tively, andare arranged'inciroular series therein.
TheJpiston‘ skirts are also provided with‘ a‘like
number of head andcrank'end ‘ports 21H,v ZIC',
‘ respectively, ‘similarly arranged in circular series
faridiunctioning ‘to pass'iste'am' through‘ the pis
skirts to’ the finterior ' ‘er ‘ the‘ piston.
20 ing displacement of the lower rack 34C. to the
right; As the racks’ area?ixed ‘to. the'sleeves,
the latter are‘ correspondingly displaced in =oppo
site dire'c'tions‘and ‘by a given amount ‘depending
onithe degree of rotation‘of‘sleeve?. I‘
The tubular sleeve 27 terminates at its upper
‘li'z'e’d‘to‘ open and close 'thd'pist‘on ports to the
admission ports 20H, 20C‘ ‘of ‘the vsleeves l2; 13,
respectively," "These sleeves‘ ‘arepositioned in a
endin a head 21a, against‘which ajheads‘l'lb,
formed at the upper end of’ the poppet'stem Ila
is secured, whereby lowering'movement or the
sleeve'results in corresponding vlowering'move
‘20C'provided' therein, the ‘sleeves l2, l3 are-each
connected to a swiveltl turning ina ?xed support
ports, ‘the supplementary "ports 22H-'of"sleeve
its ‘free end is formed integral with the duplex
_> ’
"elliptical ‘motion‘vof‘ _the'_pisto_n ‘is 'uti
manner to" be described‘ so that admission of 30 ment of the stem and opening of the poppet valve
H. The sleeve head" carries a yoked clevis“ 34
steam‘occurs just before, piston dead-‘center and
between the‘ upper leg' ends of which is pivoted
thatjthe' point of cut-"off is‘ regulated‘ by ‘the ’ angu
one end of a ‘duplex link‘35. . The other end of
la'r'riposition' of the sleeves relative to each other
the ‘link 35 is pivoted‘to‘the lower end ‘of' an arm
" "
“" In addition tov the steam admission ports 20H, is 36, the upper end of the latter being pivotally
38; 'An operating lever 60 having a handle at
provided '"with'two supplementary admission‘
'l2'a'n'd the like‘ports 22C offsl'ee've 13 'bein'g‘more ’
or less symmetrically disposed on'opposite‘sides
for the'sleeve center-lines ‘as'indicated intFigs. 4
link 35 and carries a pivoted locking handle 4|
for a'pawl 42,'the latter being adapted to ratchet
with teeth: (iS'eXtending along ‘an arcuate edge
formed on an extended portion of the arm 36.
‘and-5. The function ‘of the supplementary ports
is to allow a 'small'amount‘ of steam" to pass‘to
_~By the above'described ‘arrangement, raising
movement ‘of operating lever 40 results in lower
ing movement of both tubular stem 21 and poppet
the 'enginejafter the piston ‘closes'the main sleeve
‘admissionrports whereby the desirable'delayed
stem Na, and hence inv opening'of the poppet
valve H, the linkage system being such'th'at
cut-off ‘features disclosed and claimed in" my
prior» Patent No; 2,091,996; dated September '7,
1937; are‘obtained‘and ‘the engine will ‘be self;
starting 'in spite~of early cut-‘off. The supple
raising’ movement of the ‘lever ‘results in vgradu
are-‘controlled by the 'en‘ds’of the piston skirts,
ZB-and angular displacement oithe sleeves l2,
ated ‘opening- of the-valve asrequired to e?ect
mentary ports ‘22H; :226 are of restricted size, to throttling. ‘ Locking handle operates through
pawl 42 and ratchet ‘43 to hold thepoppet valve
'as-shown, and are 'thus unable to pass any sub
to any‘desired degree of opening.- 'In- addition
stantial amount of'steam when the- engine'is
to its raising movement as aforesaid, the oper
running atsnormal speed; ‘
ating lever‘is also bodily turnable to each side
The" cylinders‘ ‘ are exhausted ‘by: vconventional
of a normal central position, the latter‘ move
uniflow ports‘ 2311;"2'30 in- the upper and lower
ment resulting in (turning of the bevel segments
ends of’ the sleeves'jl2,‘ l3; respectively, which
13in opposite direction as-aforesaid. Accord
and>~which open‘ into the exhaust jacket space
ingly, the described arrangement provides a'sin—
24.’ In order-to delay the‘sta'rt of compression,
advantage is taken ‘of the piston ports 241-1, 210 60 gle control for effecting throttling and for deter
mining the direction of engine operation. 5 And,
and the elliptical travel'of the-piston by providing
due to the fact that displacement'of the? sleeves
aplurality of ~~auxiliaryexhaust ports 251-13256
42,13 is also employed to 'vary-cuteoff," the single
control means as aforesaid additionally provides
in- the head and'crank'end sleeves l2, l3. ' Both
the "uni?ow exhaust and the auxiliary exhaust
ports are arranged in circular series, generally
' means ‘for varying cut-loff through ' angular- dis
"as shown. While-not necessary to engine-oper
ation; the inclusion of the auxiliary exhaust ports
a'spermittedby the elliptical motion -of the pis
ton-resultsl-in improved engine operation over
‘the comjentional-uniflow design. -'
Provision is made for shifting- the sleeves, l2,
1|3,-Yeircumferentially"a given amount‘ and in op
positei direction, thus tocontrol ‘the'direct-io'n of
placement of the-sleeves]
~ ?
Figs; 4-, 411,411, 40; 4d; 46 illustrate the progres
sive positions of the’ piston ports to ‘sleeve ports
through one-half ‘rotation of the'crank shaft; and
will serve to explain the operation of the engine;
In Fig. '4 the piston‘ ‘I ‘is shownin'its head-end
dead-‘center #position; ' and the‘ sleeves - l 2, '--l 3‘ are
shown as displaced relatively to‘ieach other from
their mean or central positions to sleeve posit-ions
Referringlto Figsgl'l-3gith'e" chests “5H,- I-8C‘ are 75 corresponding lto‘counterclockwi-se direction ‘of
enginewp'eration, 'arid?alsoto‘vary the cut-off; __,,
rotation‘ of the engine as indicated‘ ‘by. crank shaft
arrow (Fig. 2). With the motion of the "piston
being such-‘thatany point on the p'iston,‘and spe
ci?cally-the‘point P thereon, moves in an ellip
ticalipath, the motion of the piston is designated
in the said ?gures by adot and dash ellipse, and
thecounterclockwise direction ofmotion by the
applied arrow. For such direction of rotation, the
supplementary port 22H to‘the right of thecenter
line of sleeve I2, and the supplementary port 220
to the left ‘of the center line of sleeve l3 .are op
erative, the alternate set of supplementary ports
being inoperative, i, e, at‘ all times .coverediby the
In Fig. 4 it will be'seen that the piston ports
2IH have just opened to sleeve ports 20H, with
ton, and that they control-and. distribution of the
steam to the cylinders‘ thereof vis'obtain‘ed through
the elliptical motion of ‘thepiston, in conjunction
with the ‘use of ported piston skirts andported
. sleeves which. are interposed between: the skirted
pistonandits cylinder, vIn addition to simpli?e
cation of steamengine design and operation, the
invention further provides an extremely simple
yetie'?ective means to varyv the p'oint;'of, ,
through variation in the degree vof sleevedisplace~
ment relative to piston, and hence a ‘variation. of
the pointat which the piston ports move-‘out .of
registry ‘ with the sleeve. admission ports. 1 The
invention .also provides an. exceedingly‘ simple
means of reversingithe direction of engine. opera:
tion, which feature is achieved by the simple ex-.
the'engine crank on dead-center. No other ports
pedient ofl displacing . the sleeves .by va given >
are open except uni?ow exhaust ports 23C at the
amount to opposite sides oftheirnormal central
crank or opposite end ,Ofthe cylinder. Fig; 4a
position; ‘The invention valso makes use‘ of; the
shows a further advanced position with piston
ports .2 l H open to sleeve ports 20H. At‘the oppo 20 motion of the piston in itdelaying the. start of-coni
pression,.-as well as to-e?iect delayedcut-oii and
site- end of the cylinder themain exhaust ports
hence self-starting of thezeng'ine; 1‘
. f; .
230 have been closed by the piston skirt 70.
While ‘the above description‘ refers to the .use
However, at this point of piston travel, the piston
of ported sleeves by which the desirablevariable ports ZIC are starting to open to the.v auxiliary
cutoff: and reversing- 1. features . are in; part
exhaust ports 250. thus delaying the start of com
achieved, such sleeves are ‘not essential,,.en~.
pression at the crank end of the cylinder.
gine operatingas' described where the variablev
. Fig. 4b shows the approach to the cut-olT of
steam at the upper or head end of the cylinder,
sion port 22H is admitting a small quantity of
steam, thereby delaying cut-off for self-starting.
At the crank end ofv the cylinder, auxiliary ex
haust through ports 250 is still taking place. Fig.
4c shows that main cut-o? has taken place at the
head end of the cylinder except for supplemen
tary admission through small port 22H. At the
lower‘ end of the cylinder, auxiliary ports 250
have been covered so that further down move
cutoff and reversing provisions are'notrequired, ,
and hence may be omitted ‘without departing
and alsothat the operative supplementary admis
from the scope and spirit of they present inven
tion.' Moreover, although the, engine‘ as de
scribed has been referred to‘ speci?callyas va
steam engine, it can of course be operated by‘ the
pressure of elastic ?uids other than steam.
Hence, it is to be understood that where steam
is used throughout the speci?cation and in- the
claims, such use is made for convenience’on-ly
and is intended to designate and embrace all
forms of elastic ?uids capable ,of operating en;
ment'of the piston eiTects compression therein.
Fig.‘ 4d shows cut-off of the operative supplemen 40 gines of the character herein described. _ > tary port 220, Comparison of piston position in
vIt is also to be understood thatthe word “ellip
Fig. 4d with that shown in Fig. 4b illustrates the
tical” as used in the foregoing description and in
difference between the main and supplementary
the appended claims to descri'be'the motion or
cut-off. Fig. 4e shows the uni?ow exhaust ports
path of travel of the piston is employed for con
23Hat the head end of the cylinder open. At the
venience to de?ne its simultaneous reciprocat
crank end, the piston ports 2|C are just ap
ing and rotating'movement or travel, which'may
proaching sleeve ports 200 so that main admis
not follow a true geometric ellipse. Accordingly
sion to the crank end of the cylinder is about to
the expressions “elliptical motion” and “elliptical
50 path” as herein used are to be broadly construed
With the aforesaid views showing successive
to embrace any and all such motion or travel of
positions of the piston and sleeve ports through
the piston as results from its compounded re
one-half revolution of the crank shaft, by simple
ciprocating and rotative movement.
reversal they also illustrate successive piston and
Moreover as many changes could be made in
port positions for the other half of the crank
55 carrying out the above construction without de
shaft revolution.
parting from the scope of the invention, it is
Fig, 5 is a view corresponding to Fig. 4 but
intended that all matter contained in the above
illustrating displacement of the upper sleeve l2
description or shown in the accompanying draw
to the right and of the lower sleeve l3 to the left
ings shall be interpreted as illustrative and not
of their relative position shown in Fig. 4, as re
in a limiting sense.
quired for rotation of the engine in opposite di 60 I claim:
rection. In the View, the motion of the piston is
1. In a reciprocating engine, a cylinder, a pis
in clockwise direction, with the point P describ
ton, the cylinder having steam supply and ex
ing the elliptical path shown. Inasmuch as rela
haust openings, a sleeve interposed between the
tive position of piston and sleeve ports follows
generally that described in connection with Figs. 65 piston and the cylinder,‘ the sleeve having admis
sion, supplementary exhaust and main uni?ow '
4—4e, inclusive, with the diiference that the pis
ports opening to the cylinder supply and
ton in Fig. 5 is moving clockwise, no detailed
exhaust openings and to the cylinder space, the
description or repeated illustrations for the oppo
piston having end skirtsv provided with ports
site direction of rotation and with the sleeves po
to the interior of the skirted ends there
sitioned as in Fig, 5 is believed to be necessary.
of, the sleeve and piston ports having a relation
Without further analysis it will be self-evident
ship such that the piston ports open and close
from the above description that an engine accord
interior of the skirted ends of the piston to
ing to the invention is “valveless” in the sense
the steam supply and‘ exhaust openings during
that it employs no valves separate from the pis
75 motion of the piston inpan elliptical path, and
‘ 8
in either direction thereby ,to control the direc
means responsive ;v to, the, operation of _ the engine
tionof- engineyoperation.
for imparting felliptical :motion, to the piston.
_~ " ,
5. In‘ a: reciprocating engine,-; a cylinder,v a
‘In 'a reciprocating engine, a, cylinder, 9. pis
ton,- the cylinder havingsteam "supply and ex
haust‘ openings, a sleeve interposed ‘between the
pistonwand the‘ cylinder, the sleeve having main
skirted piston, an’ angularly displaceable sleeve
interposed between piston and cylinder, the ,cyl
inder having ‘steam supply andexhaust openings,
the sleeve, and the, pistonskirts being provided
with cooperating ports adapted upon motion’ of
admission, : supplementary , (admission, ' supple
mentary_..exhaust and'main ~.uniflow exhaust
the piston in an elliptical path to control admis
ports'opening ;to the cylinder supply and exhaust
sionof steam to the interior of the skirted ends
openingsrespectively, and to the cylinder space,
of the piston andto e?ect steam cut-01f, means
the‘piston ‘having end skirtsprovided‘ with ports
opening to theinteriorthereof; ‘thesleeve and
piston ports being'so related'and arranged that
responsivetoengine operation for imparting el
liptical motionto the piston, and means for ef
fecting angular displacement of the sleeve there
the pistonports open the interior of the skirted
by to vary the point of cut-off.
ends ofv the piston successively to the :main and
~ 6. In a reciprocating double acting engine, a
supplementary"admission ports, and to the ex
cylinder, a skirted piston, coaxial sleeves inter,
haust portsof the sleeve upon motion‘ of the-pis
posed between piston and cylinder and being
ton in, an elliptical path, and means responsive
mounted for relative. angular displacement, the
to the operation of the engine tor-imparting el
cylinderhaving' steamisupply and exhaust open
_ ~;
ings, thelsleeve'and the piston skirts being pro
_3. In aireciprocating double. acting engine, a
vided withicooperating ports adapted, upon» mo
cylinder, a-skirtedfpiston, coaxial relatively dis
tion of the piston in' an elliptical path to control
placeable sleeves interposed between piston and
admission of steam to‘the interior of the'skirted
- cylinder, the'cylinder having steam supply and
ends of the piston and to effect steam cut-off,
exhaust openings, the sleeves and the piston
means responsive to engine operation for im
skirts being provided with ports for opening the
parting elliptical motion to the piston, and means
interior of the ‘skirted ends of the piston to the
for effecting relative angular displacement of
, supply vand exhaust openings, respectively, upon
the sleeves thereby to vary the point'of cut-off.
motion of the piston in an elliptical path, means
7. In a reciprocating double acting engine, a
responsive to engineeoperation for imparting el 30 cylinder, a skirted piston, coaxial sleeves inter
liptical motion ‘to the piston, and means for dis
posed between piston and cylinder and being
placing the sleeves _an_equal amount in opposite
mounted for relativeangular displacement, the
directions whereby to effect control of the direc
cylinder having steam supply and exhaust open
tion of engine operation.
ings, the sleeve and the piston skirts being pro
cylinder, a skirted piston, coaxial relatively dis
placeable sleeves interposed between piston and
cylinden'the cylinder having steam supply and
exhaust openings, the. sleeves and the piston
flow of steam to the interior of the skirted ends
, 4,,In a reciprocating double acting engine, a 35 vided with cooperating ports adapted upon mo
skirts being provided'with ports for opening the
interior of the skirted ends of the piston to the
supply ‘and exhaust openings, respectively, upon
tion of the piston in an elliptical path to control
of the piston and said ports being arranged so
motion of the piston in an elliptical path, means
responsive to engine operation for imparting
elliptical motion to the piston, the relation and
arrangement of sleeve ports to piston ports being
such that opposite displacement of the sleeves to
the sides of a mean position is required to effect
engine operation in a given direction, and means
for effecting opposite displacement of the sleeve 50
that opposite angular displacement of the sleeves
from a central position is required for operation
of the engine in one direction and that reverse
angular displacement of the sleeves from, said
central position is required for reverse engine
operation, and a single control means selectively
operable to_effect throttling of steam passing to
the engine supply openings and to effect equal
and opposite displacement of the sleeves in either
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