Hot Air Stirling Engine

Definition:

Hot air engine is a catch-all term for any heat engine which uses the expansion and contraction of air under the influence of a temperature change to convert thermal energy into mechanical work.

In a typical implementation, air is repeatedly heated and cooled in a cylinder and the resulting expansion and contraction is used to move a piston and produce useful mechanical work.

Cycle

The Stirling engine uses the temperature difference between its hot end and cold end to establish a cycle of a fixed mass of gas expanding and contracting within the engine, thus converting thermal energy into mechanical power. The greater the temperature difference between the hot and cold sources, the greater the potentialCarnot cycle efficiency.