Department of Mechanical Engineering
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A Stirling Engine Generator Using Biomass Fuel

The Stirling engine is a reciprocating engine, however, the Stirling engine is an externally heated engine, and if that heat is supplied by a combustion process, it is an external combustion engine. The heat is transferred to the working gas and is then converted to work via the Stirling thermodynamic cycle. The internal combustion engine, by comparison, requires a pressure change and generated by burning of fuel in the cylinder to work. Because the Stirling engine heat is supplied externally, a wide variety of heat sources can be used (such as fossil fuels, solar, nuclear, and waste heat), but the Stirling engine is particularly well-suited to biomass fuels.