LaunchPoint Technologies is developing gen-sets based on reciprocating engines for aircraft hybrid power sources. Reciprocating engines have much higher efficiency that turbine engines. For mission durations above 1-2 hours the reduced fuel payload required for an efficient reciprocating engine can make the combined fuel and engine mass lower for a reciprocating gen-set than a turbine-based gen-set.
We presently have prototypes in-process for 1.5 kW, 6 kW, 12 kW and 40 kW gen-set units.
40 kW gen-set based on Rotax 582
Our hybrid bus controller is integrated with the engine controls and generator controller to provide seamless management of power resources on the bus and maintain engine speed and bus voltage during transient events. If a generator controller is utilized that features bi-directional active power conversion electronics then the alternator electric machine can also be used as a starter motor for the engine.
To achieve high specific power we utilize the highest performance engines available and couple them with our high specific power electric machines to achieve an efficient, light-weight system.
We have integrated a dual halbach array alternator with a GSE heavy fuel engine (http://gsehfe.com/ ) to create a 6 kW heavy-fuel electric power source that weighs 13 lbs. including the active electronics to enable the alternator to function as a starter motor. The unit provides 1 kW/kg for conversion of heavy fuel to electricity including the active power electronics enabling starter-alternator operation.
6 kW gen-set based on GSE heavy fuel engine
Our 1.5 kW gen-set (with an associated LaunchPoint smart battery pack) will be a plug-and-play hybrid power source replacement for small multi-rotor UAVs that will increase endurance up to 1.5 hours from the present 20 minutes pure electric on a large battery pack.
Early 500 W gen-set prototype based on small 2-stroke gasoline engine