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Sept. 17, 1946. R. H. KNAUSS Y 2,407,788 INTERNAL-COMBUSTION ENGINE Filed July_ 1, 1944' ‘ s Sheets-Sheet 1 Sept. 17, 1946. 7 R. H. KNAUSS INTERNAL —COMBUSTION Filed July 1, 1944 .1. ‘WA. 2,407,788 ENGINE 3 Sheets-Sheet 2' Sept. 17, 1946. ' R, ‘H, KNAUSS INTERNAL-COMBUSTION ENGINE Filed July 1, 1944 ' ‘m . k 27 'I 26 v “ 2,407,788 . 3 Sheets-Sheet 5 I Patented Sept. 17, 1946 2,407,788 UNITED STATES PATENT ‘OFFICE 2,407,788 IN TERNAL-VCOMBUSTION ENGINE Richard H. Knauss, Peoria, Ill. Application July 1, 1944, Serial No. 543,062 12 Claims. This invention relates to a power unit, and to improvements in internal combustion engines as members of said unit. More particularly the invention has to do with a power unit employing twin combustion engines of the two cycle type using any form of fuel, in cluding Diesel fuel, wherein provision is made for introducing into the ?ring chambers thereof ?ring charges at pressure greater than the pres (Cl. 123-59) 2 pistons by ‘which the explosive mixture is far greater in density than that resulting from the power pistons alone. This as an “overcharge” is forced into each ?ring cylinder in turn, in alternate manner, in the two engines and, due to the compressed ‘volume of ?ring mixture the unit will operate as efficiently at high levels as at sea level. These pressures are set up alter nately in alternate ?ring cylinders ‘?rst by one sures that can be produced by the pistons in 10 auxiliary piston and then by the other, the such chambers. proper pressure charges being provided by spring An object of the invention is to provide a . unit comprising twin engines wherein compres sions auxilary to and greater than those pro duced by the usual power pistons can be intro duced into the combustion chambers of each - said engine by the employment of auxiliary pressure creating pistons, such auxiliary pres sures being valved in timed order from one en gine toward the other engine as a part of a ?r held valves adapted to open at a predetermined ' setting for pressure at'the altitude to be attained. In Figure 1 of the‘drawings, ‘I represents the 15 base portion or crank case of twin engines of the power unit, while 2 isthe single crank shaft serving both engines, and 3 the upper body struc tures of each secured in a customary manner to ' the crank case and which includes ?ring cylin 20 ders 4 and 5 spaced from each other, wherein ing charge through a valve which is capable of are the usual power’plstons B and 1, respectively, being set for any predetermined pressure or such above which are exhaust valves A in the engine a pressure as is necessary to provide for proper engine performance for‘planes operating at high heads operated in the usual way with respect to ‘ timing. The said cylinders 4 and 5 in this in altitudes. 25 stance depend into the crank case I, the cylinder Another object is that by building up pressures 4'being encircled by a ring piston 8, the cylinder and introducing them into the ?ring chambers 5 being encircled by similar ring piston 9, it be of a pair of engines through valving means capa ing noted that each of the connecting rods ID of ble of being set to open under any given pres such pistons engage about a cracked portion ll sure for high altitude purposes. 30 of the crank shaft 2, which portions l l are spaced That the structure of my engine may be fully opposite the connecting rods l2 of the said power understood the appended drawings are provided pistons 6 and ‘l, i. e., at opposite sides of the as parts thereof. crank-shaft-center so that the‘ power pistons and Figure 1 is a longitudinal section in elevation, ring pistons will move in opposite directions. In of the engine of my invention. Figure 2 is a horizontal section of the same, 35 the crank case a web 3' lies midway between the produced on line 2-2 of Figure 1. two engines, and serves as a bearing support for the crank shaft together with those at 32 at the Figure 3 is also a horizontal section of the crank case ends. ‘ engine taken on line 3-3 of said Figure 1. Figure 4 is a transverse sectional elevation of An outer wall 2' of each upper body structure the engine as produced on line 4-4 of Figure 1. encircles and is spaced from the cylinders 4 and Figure 5 is a plan of a valve arrangement in 5 forming a companion cylinder for the ring pis horizontal section constructed according to Fig tons 8 and 9, the two latter, therefore, working ures 1 and 2 but much enlarged and between said wall 2’ and cylinders 4, 5 respec Figure 6 is a vertical section of part of a valve 45 tively. case. . My improved structure is arranged and adapt ed for operation at high altitudes where atmos Further, outward from the wall 2' of each structure 2 is a wall 22 spaced from the said wall 2' creating an annular recess I3, Figure 3, pheric pressure may be even as low as twelve pounds. Since power pistons cannot take in as 50 which in this instance partially encircles the latter and both of which merge into each other at much air for compression at high altitudes as 23 between the structures as in Figures 2 and 3, ‘at low altitudes, near sea level for example, I the purpose of the recess l3 appearing later provide an auxiliary piston for each of the two herein. It is to be stated however, that in the pistons employed in the power unit shown, such wall 2' of each engine is a series of transfer open pistons having greater areas than said power 55 ings or ports l4 through which the space l3 may 2,407,788 3, the recess H3 at the cylinder 5 and the ring pls ton cavity at that same cylinder, it being Ob! served that the Walls of the cylinders 4, 5 as in communicate with the cylinder in which the ring pistons 8 and 9 travel. Again, each upper structure 2 has a wall l5 Figures 1 and 3, are connected by a bridging por tion I4’ for closing communication between the each partially encircling the cylinders 4 and 5 in spaced relation thereto creating a recess [6 said cylinders having said pistons 8, 9. There which may communicate with the bores of the said cylinder 4, 5 through transfer openings or ports H in the walls of the two latter, a recess fore, neither of the cylinder cavities can com municate with its neighbor except through the unseating of a valve 22. .- 8 of the upper structure of each engine together ' , In the wall 2' below the position of the valve forming a conduit or passageway, as Figures 10 , case is an inlet opening 30, Figures 1 and'3, for the 1 and 2, lying between said structures. intake of the explosive mixture conveyed by a manifold connection 3 l, the inducted mixture be ing free to enter the cavity for ring piston 8, or l9 suitably secured in place and closing the space between them as in Figure 2 and having two com 15 the cavity for ring piston 9, as each piston in its travel uncovers the openings l4 of the wall 2’. partments or passages therethroughleading into The adjustment of spring tension at the valves said heads through windows [9’, Figure 4, the determines the degree of compression necessary case with normally seated valves therein forming Within this space I8, and lying between the head portions of the two engines is a valve case to unseat the valves, both said valves being set a barrier to cormnunication of the ?oores for the pistons 8, 9, and the bores of the cylinder 4, 5 with 20 each other, a closure [92 for the top of the case for a like pressure, as stated. ' ' ‘ In operating the unit at or near sea level, the valves may momentarily be prevented opening by engaging the ends of the members 29 in the to Figure 5 particularly, the said case I9 is divided grooves of the collars 21, said members being so into the two named compartments by a wall 20. One end of each compartment is open, while at 25 located of course that their engagement with the collars is always at the closed or seated position the other end of each is a seat 2| 'for a valve 22. of the valves. This arrangement serves to place The valves are designed to open outwardly, in op a full charge of gas from the bores of the cylinders posite directions or each toward a cylinder 4, 5, 2' for the ring pistons 8, 9 into the ?ring cham the stem 23 of each valve being slidable in a sup completing the barrier thus provided. ' Referring bers. Thus a sudden increase in power is avail able, and such charges may also serve for start ing purposes. The numerous openings l4 and H are provided port 24, each stem also carrying a nut 25, for ex ample, threaded thereon for adjustment there along. Between a support 24 and an adjacent nut‘ 25 of each stem is a compression spring 26, at the recesses l3, l6 merely in order that the these springs normally holding the valves in their said seats 2|. The adjustment of the nuts vary 35 compressed gases may have free ?ow into the cyle inders 4, 5 though, perhaps this free ?ow may the tension of the springs, the spring tensions 7 be obtained in other ways. being equal one to the other for the present pur In Figure 1 the auxiliary or pressure piston 8 pose. Included in- the valve structure is a grooved is in its lowest position, having in its descent ‘ collar 27 fixed on each stem, each groove adapted drawn gas mixture through ports [4 of the cylin to receive the end of a shiftable member 29 slid 40 der 4 the power piston 6 having reached the top able through a wall of the valve case and each of its stroke. The piston 9 has reached the top so placed with respect to a collar that both the of its compression stroke, having closed the inlet valves may be held ?rmly in their seats when de ports !4 at the cylinder 5, and at this time the sired, any suitable means not shown, being used to shift the members 29 simultaneously into and 45 power piston ‘I has reached the extreme of its power stroke. As said piston 5 descends due to out of engagement with the collars. the ?red gas charge thereabove the said piston In the present instance'ea'ch valve seat 2| is v8 moves upward to compress the gas mixture situated inward from the ends of the case l9, the valves 22 therefor each having a guide member ‘22' snugly slidable within a cupped member 222 screwed, for example, into one end of each of a named compartment, there being an opening 23' in the wall of each- member 222 which leads through the wall of said case l9 and the cover l92 to the outer air, see Figures 5 and 6, said open ing serving as a “breather” for the cavity behind. the said'guide member 22" as a valve shifts posi tion. Also, in the lower wall of the case in each above it, after closing the port [4 adjacent it. At this time the piston 9will move down and the pis ton ‘I will move up. the purpose of this structure appearing later herein. ' The valve so provided lies between the cylin- , , charge above, and received by it from the port 14, is compressed during the time the piston 6 is descending, is con?ned by the closed valve 22 and is forced into the cylinder 4 above said piston ' ~compartment is an opening, or port, 232 for pas sage therethrough for gases under pressure from the valve casing when each valve is forced open, . In the upward travel of the piston 8 a gas 60 5 when that member uncovers the adjacent port i1. Any pressure above or in excess of that in troduced by said piston 8, or that pressure in excess of that for which the valves are set, un seats the valve that opens toward the piston ‘l to admit such excess, or overcharge,‘into that portion of the passage ii; at the engine of which said piston ‘I is a part. ' During the descent of the piston B the piston ‘I ders 4, 5 as shown clearly in Figures 1 and 2 and 65 is, of course rising, the port I‘! adjacent it being either compartment of the same through its open closed thereby, the gas for that piston having end, may communicate with a recess IB leading previously passed through that port in the upward to cylinders 4, 5. Also the compartments are in compression stroke of the piston 9 which, as" communication separately, only, with the cavities shown in the drawings, has just reached the limit of the cylinder for the ring pistons 8, 9, Stated in of that stroke. The excess pressure, or over another way, but one compartment of the valve charge, as in the ?rst instance, will unseat the box can communicate separately at its open end other of the valves 22' for movement of that with the space or recess l8 at the cylinder 4 and charge toward and into the passage l6 at the en ‘the ring piston cavity adjacent thereto while the gine having the piston 6, these overcharges being other compartment can only communicate with 2,407,788 5 ‘subsequently-parts of further fresh gas charges supplied 'by ‘the‘pressure pistons ‘in the manner described. The named excess charges or over charges held .in the passage [6, and subsequently withdrawn, are the amounts that balance the charges forced into the cylinders above the pis tons 3.6, 7 and the exact amount displaced ‘by their pistons in said travel. Naturally, when the lighter air at higher alti 6 iliary pistons. These air charges are then in jected into the power cylinders, and finally mixed with separately injected fuel therein to create ?ring charges during the compression strokes of the power pistons. Any overcharge of air, i. e., charges above the set requirements for such en gines are still passed through the valves 22 but are ?nally discharged into the outer air in any desired ‘manner as surplus. As may be seen, tudes is inducted the valves 22 will be opened 10 thereiore, the said valves 22 in effect meter the at the same pressures as at low altitudes but fol charges in any engine, whether overcharging ‘lowing higher positions of the pistons, i. e., longer explosive mixtures ‘as in the earlier description 'travels thereof so that the same exact cubic charges will still be placed in the cylinders 4, 5 although, of course, the overcharges will be less ‘due to lighter air. ‘The pistons B, -9 each has a cubic displacement 42% greater than the displacement of either ‘piston 6, 1. That is to say, the cubic displace ment of pistons 8, 9 each with a stroke of one inch is 42% greater than the cubic displacement of either piston 6, ‘I having a stroke of but one inch and'three quarters. Naturally, each piston 8, 9 in its descent for herein, or as in said Diesel engines where the overcharges are charges of air only. While I have adapted my invention to an en gine of the two cycle type it ‘may also be adapted to a four cycle engine, in principle. What is claimed is: 1. In combination, a pair of companion en gines of the two cycle type jointly forming power unit and each including power piston and power cylinder, and including also a pressure piston and a compression cylinder, the latter to con?ne pressures set up by the former, like pistons of intake of gases will create a vacuum within its 25 each engine‘acting in opposite directions, there cylinder that may tend to unseat the valve “22 above it. If the vacuum is su?icient to overcome the spring tension on said valve, or in addition thereto, if pressure of gas is on the valve at the same time said valve might unseat and thus the 30 proper joint functioning of the two engines would be interfered with by premature release of pres sure, with consequent insu?icient charges intro duced into the ‘power cylinders. For this reason ‘each valve is hooded by a described cupped mem ber 222 so that a formed vacuum cannot affect it. Thus provided, the valves can be un-seated only by gas pressure, that is to say such pressures being a transfer port in a wall of the compression cylinder of each engine in communication with the bore of that cylinder when the pressure pis ton is begnining its compression stroke, said port having communication with a source of fuel mix ture, there also being a port in a wall of the power cylinder to communicate with the bore of the latter at the end of the fuel intake stroke of said power piston, said port and the ?rst named port being communicable with ‘each other and with the fuel source, there being a single avenue of communication between the bores of the com pression cylinders of the two engines with each as have been predetermined by the tension of the springs. ‘However, other ways for accom 40 other, the two named ports of each engine also communicable jointly with the named avenue, a plishing the same end may, of course, be em~ valve case lying in said avenue comprising two ployed. separatepassages, and an elastically controlled At sea level any well known method of cal valve in each passage and normally seated to culating for the setting of the ‘valves '22 may be close communication through said avenue and employed so that they will each be unseated at adapted to be unseated separately in opposite di a given pressure at any altitude. Naturally un rections by ‘pressures set up alternately in said seating of the valve will occur at shorter travels compression cylinders by the pistons therein for of the piston 8, 9 at or near sea levels than in directing pressure from one of each cylinder of the more rari?ed atmospheres. In other words greater travels of these pistons would be required .50' one engine into the power cylinder of the com panion engine in alternate order. progressively as altitudes become greater. 2. A power unit including in its construction The intake of the gasses may be in excess of a pair of engines of the two cycle type, each charges needed by the power cylinder of either en engine including a power piston and its cylinder, gine to function at any altitude, this excess over and a pressure piston and a pressure cylinder flowing into the opposite pressure cylinder as the for compression of gases, there being two pas piston in the latter recedes in its intake stroke. sageways connecting the bores of the pressure Thus all fuel mixture is used and no more is cylinders, said bores being otherwise noncom drawn from the intake manifold than required to municable with each other, there being a port supply a de?ciency, should there be such. Important is the fact that the single intake for 60 in each power cylinder and a ‘port in each pres~ sure cylinder communicable with a source of‘ fuel fuel mixture supplies both engines so that a proper mixture for one of them is correct for the other, all other conditions being equal. Thus mixture, the said ports of one engine being c0m~ municable with but one of said passages, and an elastically controlled valve in each passage nor by a correct carburetor setting the twin engines work together as a unit in perfect coordination, 65 mally seated and closing communication between the ‘bores of said pressure cylinders, said valves a smoothly operating mechanism being assured. At sea level the operation of the unit is like adapted to be separately unseated in opposite di that of any conventional engine unit, overcharg" ing occurring as high ?ying levels are attained. rections by pressure set up ‘alternately by the pressure pistons of the engines, and means for The power units composed of twin engines .as adjusting each valve mechanism to hold it seated herein provided may be multiplied foriproviding except under a given gas pressure thereon. 3. A power unit including in its construction a power plants of greater power, a single crank shaft serving all of such units, naturally. In ‘employing my invention with Diesel engines pair of engines of the two cycle type, each engine including its power piston and cylinder, and hav air charges only, of course, are'inducted by aux- . ins a pressure piston and a pressure cylinder for 2,407,788 7 ‘8 compression of gases, a pair of passageways con necting the bores of the pressure cylinders, there being a port in each power cylinder and a port in each pressure cylinder communicable with a source of fuel mixture, said ports of one engine being communicable with but one of said pas ‘sure, cylinders adapted in alternate order to 'un 'seatthe valves, the gases under pressurein one engine of the two being forced into the ?ring chamber of the other engine in alternate order. '7. A power unit including in its construction _two internal combustion engines of the two cycle sageways, a valve case seated between the engines and open at opposite sides forming communica inder in additionto its power piston and a cyl type, each having'an auxiliary piston and cyl-‘ tions with the bores of both pressure cylinders, inder for compressing gas charges from a‘fuel pair of engines of the two cycle type, each engine including its power piston and its cylinder, and a recess under the pressure charges so set up, said said case being divided into two compartments 10 source common to both engines, there being a cavity adjacent each engine to communicate with separate one from the other, a valve mounted the ?ring chambers thereof wherein to receive in each compartment one of them arranged to compressed fuel charges set up by said auxiliary open in a direction opposite to that of the other, pistons, a pair of separate normally elastically and a spring to hold each valve elastically in'its 15 seated valves normally separating said cavities seat. one from the other, the valves adapted to sep 4. A power unit including in its construction a arately unseat in opposite directions each toward charges being separately forced into the ?ring having a pressure piston and a pressure cylinder for compression of gases, a pair of passageways 20 chambers of opposite chambers in alternate order. 8. A power unit including in its construction connecting the bores of the pressure cylinders, two internal combustion engines of the two cycle there being a port in each power cylinder and type, each having an auxiliary, piston and cylin a port in each pressure cylinder communicable der in addition to its power piston and cylinder with a source of fuel mixture, said ports of each engine being separately communicable with one 25 for compressing gas charges from a fuel source common to both engines, there being a cavity ad of the said passageways, a valve case seated be jacent each engine to communicate with the ?ring tween the engines and open at opposite sides chambers thereof wherein to receive compressed forming a passage therethrough communicating fuel charge set up by said auxiliary pistons, a with both pressure cylinders, said case being divided into two compartments separate one from 30 pair of separate normally elastically seated valves normally separating said cavities one from the the other, a valve mounted in each compartment, other, the valves adapted to 'separately‘unseat one arranged to open in a direction opposite to in opposite directions each toward a recess under that of the other, a spring to hold each valve the pressure charges so set up, said charges being elastically in its‘ seat and, means to adjust the tension of the spring of each valve for setting 35 separately forced into the ?ring chambers of 0p posite‘chambers in alternate order and means to each of the latter to open at a given pressure of vary the degree with which the valves are elas a gas thereagainst. tically seated whereby they may be unseated by 5. A power unit including in its construction varying predetermined pressure charges. _ I a pair of engines of the two cycle type, each en 9. A power unit including in its construction gine including a power piston and its cylinder, a pair of internal combustion engines having and having a pressure piston and a pressure cyl power pistons operating in contrary directions, a inder for compression of gases, a pair of passage separate pressure piston on each engine for'in ways connecting the bores of the pressure cyl taking and compressing fuel charges, the same inders, there being a port in each power cylinder and a port in each pressure cylinder communi 45 operating in contrary directions, and each oper ating in a direction contrary to the travel of cable with a source of fuel mixture, said ports the power piston of the same engine of which. each of one engine being communicable with but one said pressure piston is a part, there being a port of said passageways, a valve box seated between for intake of fuel to both said pressure pistons, the engines and open at opposite sides forming a communication between both pressure cylin 50 there also being a passage arranged to com municate with thecylinders of the power pistons ders, said case being divided into two compart while having communication also with the cylin ments separate one from the other, a valve ders of the pressure pistons and with said port, mounted in each compartment one arranged to said passage being separated in a part thereof open in a direction opposite to that of the‘ other, into two passageways, an elastically seated valve a spring to hold each valve elastically in its seat, means to adjust the tension of the spring 55 in each passageway adapted to unseat in separate order in opposite directions, each in the direction of each valve for setting eachof the latter to of a given engine, the compression stroke of the open at a given pressure, and means for prevent pressure piston of one engine adapted to force ing unseating of the valves. a gas charge through said passage’upon the power 6. A power unit including in its construction two internal combustion engines, each engine 60 piston of the same engine, said charge also un seating the valve directed toward the companion having a pressure cylinder and a/ piston therefor engine when the pressure of such gas charge is in in addition to the power piston of each, the two excess of that required for the named power pis pressure pistons having opposite directions of travel, and like pistons having opposite direction ton. , ,10. The invention as de?ned by claim 9, in cluding means for setting each valve to unseat at a predetermined pressure thereupon. pressure cylinders of the engines being normally 11. A power unit including in its construction noncommunicable, there being a pair of passages a pair of internal combustion engines having communicable with both said cylinders, an elas tically controlled valve in each passage normally 70 power pistons operating in contrary directions, a pressure pistonrat each engine for intaking and closing each said passage, and adapted to be un compressing fuel charges, the same operating in seated in opposite directions each in the direc of travel in the two engines and all of them ar ranged to draw from a fuel mixture source, the contrary directions and each operating in a direc tion of a different cylinder, and means for set tion contrary to the travel of the power piston ting each valve to unseat under a given‘ pressure of gas thereagainst, pressures from the two pres 75 for the same engine of vwhich each said pressure ’ 9 2,467,788“ piston is a part, there being a passage between the power-piston cylinders, said passage being divided into two separate passageways, an elas~ tically controlled valve in each passageway adapted to unseat under pressure in opposite directions, the Wall of each cylinder having a port, the ports communicating with the said passage and with each other through the latter when one or the other of the valves is unseated, said pas“ sage also being in communication with both pres 10 sure-piston cylinders and communicating with placement area than that of its corresponding power piston, there being a port for intake of fuel charges to both pressure pistons, there also be ing a passage arranged to communicate with the cylinders of the pressure pistons and with said port, a valve casing having two separate and in-' dependent bores each to separately communi cate with the fuel-charge passage to an engine, an elastically seated valve in each bore adapted to unseat in separate order in opposite directions each in the ‘direction of a given engine, the com pression strokes of the pressure pistons adapted the source of fuel mixture, the power pistons in their travel exposing and closing the named ports, to alternately unseat the valves and force fuel > the compressing stroke of the pressure piston of charges through and beyond the valves toward one engine adapted to force a gas charge through and into power-piston cylinders when the pres the said passage upon the power piston of the sure of ‘fuel charges are in excess of those nor same engine, said charge also unseating the valve mally required for such power pistons, the said directed toward the companion engine when such valve casing having a cavity separate from and charge is in excess of that required at the named in line with each bore thereof, there being a port power piston. 20 leading from each cavity into the named passage, 12. A power unit including in its construction there also being a port leadingr from each cavity a pair of internal combustion engines including to the atmosphere, and a piston in each cavity their power pistons operating simultaneously in each as a part of one of the named elastically contrary directions, a separate pressure piston in seated valves, each of the last named pistons each engine for intaking and compressing i‘uel adapted to alternately expose one of the named charges, each operating contrary to the travel oi ports of a cavity, and to close the other port dur the power piston of the engine of which power ing the seating and unseating of said valves. piston is a part, and each having a greater dis RICHARD H. KNAUSS.