Louis J. Faix
  • On March 21st, 2003 I visited the facilities of ANGEL LAB, LLC and met with Mr. Raphial R. G. Morgado and Dr. Jin K. Kim. The purpose of the meeting was to become acquainted with the design and construction of the AMighty Engine@ and to observe its operation.


  • While the configuration, design and construction of the AMighty Engine@ are truly unique, it develops mechanical energy (i.e power) in accordance with the long established principles of a four cycle, internal combustion engine. That is, there is an induction phase, a compression phase, a combustion/expansion phase and an exhaust phase. However, the uniqueness of the design is such that conventional reciprocating engine nomenclature cannot be used to describe its components and construction. The engine does not have a crankshaft, connecting rods, pistons or cylinders in the conventional sense. The prototype I observed was configured to operate as a Compression Ignition (i.e. Diesel) engine. However it could just as easily be configured to operate as a Spark Ignition engine with the addition of the requisite electrical and fuel metering components.


  • The primary distinguishing feature of the AMighty Engine@ should be its potential to develop an exceptional amount of power in a comparatively small and light weight package. While it is still too early to speculate on final development and the parameters of a production ready design, the possibility of developing energy outputs exceeding four horsepower per pound may be plausible. A secondary distinguishing feature should be its potential for a relatively low manufacturing cost. To illustrate the latter point, the engine has no cylinder heads and contains none of the parts commonly defined as the valve train (camshaft, valves, springs, tappets, push rods, rocker arms, etc). Like a two cycle engine, ports in the cylinder wall provide the only gas passage ways that are needed for aspiration. While the engine does incorporate some components having quite complex geometry, modern metal working technology and specialized machine tools should be up to the tasks.

  • Because of the reduced number of moving parts, the AMighty Engine@ may be expected to have less mechanical friction than a conventional four stroke engine of equal performance. However, its principle contribution to vehicle fuel economy will likely come about through a significant reduction in the vehicle overall weight. An automotive production version of the engine will likely weigh well less than half as much as a conventional engine, and the low speed torque qualities may make reductions in transmission weight and complexity feasible.


  • Another attribute of the AMighty Engine@ will be the near absence of any vibration. Lacking reciprocating components and a crankshaft, it will not produce the first and second order harmonic shaking forces, nor the rotating couples encountered in many conventional reciprocating engine configurations. Additionally, the magnitude of the peak-to-peak fluctuations in instantaneous output torque will approximate that of a conventional 90?V8 engine. This is advantageous from the perspective of torsional vibration stresses transmitted to the power absorber.


  • The cylinder of the AMighty Engine@ is essentially a torus that is subdivided into eight segments. The divisions are accomplished by eight paddle type Apistons@ which advance around and through the torus in a coordinated manner. The pistons are divided into two sets with each set being attached at 90? spacings to a central ring that in turn is connected to the timing mechanism and output shaft. The leading ring and piston set first advances rapidly while the trailing ring and piston set advances slowly. This differential motion causes the volume in four of the segments to expand while the volume in the other four segments is contracting. After one fourth of a revolution the timing system reverses the relative velocities and the leading pistons slow down while the trailing pistons speed up. The expanded segments now contract while the contracted segments expand. This alternating expansion and contraction of each segment provides the pumping action that is the hall mark of conventional four cycle internal combustion engines. While the pistons are advancing at an oscillating speed, the main shaft continues to rotate at a nearly uniform angular speed. Because of this alternating motion, each segment inside the torus completes two expansion/contraction cycles in one half a revolution of the main shaft. Hence, each segment can produce two Apower strokes@ per revolution of the engine. Consequently there are sixteen (16) combustion events per revolution.


  • In a conventional four stroke reciprocating engine, each cylinder takes two revolutions to complete one cycle. Therefore, to match the number of power events per revolution that occur in the AMighty Engine@, a conventional four stroke reciprocating engine would have to be equipped with thirty-two (32) cylinders.


  • For a first order approximation, the amount of power an internal combustion engine can develop is proportional to the quantity of air that it can ingest. The prototype of the AMighty Engine@ has a diameter of 3.00" in the torus cross section and the traverse distance (stroke) between the leading and trailing pistons is 3.75". With eight segments inhaling twice per revolution, the ingested air volume is 424 cubic inches per revolution. That engine displacement is achieved in a package size that is approximating a fourteen (14) inch cube. To match this air ingestion rate, a conventional four stroke reciprocating engine would need a designed displacement of 848 cubic inches since each cylinder only inhales once on every other revolution.


  • The remarkable portion of the AMighty Engine@ is the novel timing mechanism which causes the two piston segments to advance incrementally and in unison but at constantly changing dissimilar velocities. It also converts the combustion gas pressure applied to the pistons into torque on the output shaft. Because of the proprietary nature of the design and the patent pending status, it is not appropriate to describe that mechanism at this time. Mr. Morgado permitted me to examine it in close detail. Suffice to say, it is truly novel and yet eloquently simple and quite robust. The mechanism has few parts, notably little friction, operates without perceptible noise and should be easy to manufacture with standard machine tools.


  • During my visit the prototype engine was first motored by connecting the inlet port to the Laboratory compressed air supply. Lubrication and piston cooling oil was provided by a separate hydraulic pumping unit which will ultimately be designed into the engine. The motor spun freely at approximately 800 -1000 revolutions per minute because the house air supply was not throttled. No diesel injector nozzles (only two required for entire engine) were installed at that time. However, the engine was fired briefly by injecting an ether compound into the induction port. Combustion was immediate but harsh because the fuel/air mixture was not metered nor was the fuel induction timed to coincide with the end of the compression phase. During the combustion interval the engine speed accelerated quite rapidly because there was no load or dynamometer connected to the engine.


  • In conclusion, the AMighty Engine@ incorporates very unique design concepts which may give it the potential to achieve substantial power output from an exceptionally compact and light weight package. The attributes of its power to weight ratio and diminished size should make it quite attractive for applications in passenger cars, light duty trucks, specialty vehicles, water craft, small aircraft, and numerous industrial situations. The project is now at the PROOF OF CONCEPT phase and, as in all new power plant projects, considerable development work still needs to be accomplished. Most of the major engineering design tasks can be considered completed at this time although some design work will be required to incorporate development features and to meet specific application needs. Given adequate development resources, the prognosis for the engine=s market potential would appear to be quite favorable


  • Louis J. Faix - President

  • FAIX ENTERPRISES INC.

  • Consulting Engineer


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