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Four-stroke laser engine system: breakdown project

Grant number: 17/22821-7
Support type:Research Grants - Innovative Research in Small Business - PIPE
Duration: July 01, 2018 - March 31, 2019
Field of knowledge:Engineering - Mechanical Engineering - Mechanical Engineering Design
Principal Investigator:Gustavo Jean da Costa
Grantee:Gustavo Jean da Costa
Company:Gustavo Jean da Costa
CNAE: Atividades de ensino não especificadas anteriormente
City: São José dos Campos
Co-Principal Investigators:Gustavo Jean da Costa
Associated scholarship(s):18/25121-9 - Four-stroke laser engine system: breakdown project, BP.TT


Space access is currently carried out through the chemical propulsion of the rocket engines, which has a high operating cost, making it difficult to space access and consequently the launching of payloads to orbit. In this sense, aiming for easy access to space, laser propulsion is an advanced and attractive proposal to launch cargo in low Earth orbits, as it is capable of generating high specific thrust (during atmospheric flight) and high thrust that allows drastically reduce the costs of launching cargo and satellites into space. The working principle of laser propulsion involves directing energy to the aerospace vehicle in the form of electromagnetic waves (laser or microwave), which will provide necessary thrust to the flight without the need for fuel on board the vehicle. This last fact corroborates for a paradigm shift, ensuring a reduction in vehicle size by up to 10 times, weight reduction of up to 1000 times and reduction in the operational cost of space mission by up to 100 times. It is noteworthy that the laser propulsion of aerospace vehicles, which is aimed at satelliting micro / nano satellites in low earth orbits (LEO), is currently under development in the Prof. Henry T. Nagamatsu Laboratory of Aerothermodynamics and Hypersonic of the Institute for Advanced Studies (IEAv), an organization subordinated to the Department of Aerospace Science and Technology (DCTA) of the Aeronautics Command. The IEAv project has been developed in partnership with the US Air Force (USAF) since 2007, whose experiments in the United States and Brazil have proven the technical feasibility of laser propulsion. Similar to the scenario of access to space, this research project is aimed at a four-stroke automotive engine system using the principle of laser propulsion, in which the breakdown of the piston of the engine will be moved by dielectric rupture of the air which occurs in a conventional internal combustion engine. The advantages of this new type of automotive propulsion system include the non-use of fuel, and consequently the non-formation of pollutants. The aim of this research project is to achieve a more attractive solution to conventional internal combustion engines and electric motors from a technical-economic point of view. (AU)