Yes, the Diesel Powered Rotary Engine was Actually a Thing, Well, Almost
One of the awesome things that you’ll notice about the automotive community is ...
One of the awesome things that you’ll notice about the automotive community is that it comes in all different shapes and forms. No matter what your tastes, there are all sorts of different applications that can apply to exactly your niche. Sometimes, there is something that is so quirky and obscure, though, that you’d think that it would make just about any kind of automotive enthusiast drop what they were doing and take a minute to listen to what it’s all about. One of those concepts that we think pans out to be true is that of the diesel powered rotary engine.
If it’s something that you have never heard of, that’s probably because the concept never actually really caught on per se. You see, it was originally a design that the military would attempt to take on in order to try and combine big power available from diesel, efficiency, and a smaller size that you see with rotary engines. All of these metrics are equally important when it comes to the tasks that need to be carried out in this field and coming up with just the right combination for an engine could really prove to be a big help out in the field. This is where the research would begin.
You see, as it was so difficult to create high compression with a rotary, the design would begin to expand, reaching out for more rotors instead of boost and, as you can imagine, the engine would end up getting bigger and bigger and as it started falling at of some of the key metrics that the team behind it set out to satisfy in the first place. Eventually, the research kind of died off and the engine never really made it that far. However, as the concept lives on, many rotary heads are out there wishing that maybe one day a company like Mazda, who is known for their love of the Rotary, will come along, pick up the concept of the diesel powered rotary engine, and make it finally live up to its full potential. Follow along below as Engineering Explained takes a minute to give us a rundown on the ups and downs of this application and what could have been if it had the proper funding behind it and more time to grow.