Advanced science.  Applied technology.


SwRI single-cylinder engines available for combustion research

For immediate release

San Antonio — April 4, 2017 — Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) has designed and manufactured two advanced single-cylinder engines for combustion research and development.

The engines, one for light- and medium-duty applications and one for heavy-duty applications, can accommodate either multi-cylinder or single-cylinder heads through a custom cylinder barrel and head support shelf. They are designed for low-cost operation and include several unique patent-pending innovations, including mechanisms that adjust compression ratios and crankshaft offsets without the need for disassembling the engine. Optical access, dynamic cam phasing, secondary balancers, and floating liner devices can be added to the standard configurations.

“These engines provide research laboratories a cost-effective system to test their combustion strategies and designs and make any modifications pretty quickly,” said Doug Eberle, a manager in SwRI’s Powertrain Engineering Division. “They are excellent low-cost options for validating innovative ideas in engine design.”

The engines are designed for optimal combustion research and friction analysis, as well as alternative fuel, wear, optical, crank offset, and bore-to-stroke relationship studies.

Specifications for light- and medium-duty applications include a standard bore range of 65-110 mm, standard stroke range of 65-120 mm, and engine speeds up to 7,000 rpm. The heavy-duty engine includes a standard bore range of 110-145 mm, standard stroke range of 110-185 mm, and maximum engine speeds up to 2,500 rpm. Both research engines are easy to customize and can be configured for spark or compression ignition. The housing design allows for easy bearing and crankshaft removal, includes hydraulic camshaft phasers, and has a belt-driven pump.

The single-cylinder engine platforms are available for contract research projects at SwRI or for use in a client’s laboratory in standard or customized configurations.

For more information about SwRI’s single-cylinder research engine, visit or contact Deb Schmid, +1 210 522 2254, Communications Department, Southwest Research Institute, 6220 Culebra Road, San Antonio, TX 78238-5166.