Trip valve mechanisms are a class of steam engine valve gear developed to improve efficiency. The trip mechanism allows the inlet valve to be closed rapidly, giving a short, sharp cut-off. The valve itself can be a drop valve or a Corliss valve.
Trip valve gear was applied to larger stationary engines. It was not used in transport applications,as it was not suitable for high speed.
The trip point of the valve mechanism, and therefore the cut-off, would be adjusted either manually or automatically by the governor. The valve is opened by the mechanical valve gear mechanism, and when the trip gear trigger releases the mechanism the valve is snapped closed, usually by a spring acting against a dashpot.
When using the Corliss and other trip valve gears, the possible advantages are:
The trip valve-gear, which is almost always a multiple valve-gear, has the potential to face the following disadvantages:
A steam engine is a heat engine that performs mechanical work using steam as its working fluid. The steam engine uses the force produced by steam pressure to push a piston back and forth inside a cylinder. This pushing force is transformed, by a connecting rod and flywheel, into rotational force for work. The term "steam engine" is generally applied only to reciprocating engines as just described, not to the steam turbine.
A poppet valve is a valve typically used to control the timing and quantity of gas or vapor flow into an engine.
The valve gear of a steam engine is the mechanism that operates the inlet and exhaust valves to admit steam into the cylinder and allow exhaust steam to escape, respectively, at the correct points in the cycle. It can also serve as a reversing gear. It is sometimes referred to as the "motion".
In internal combustion engines, variable valve timing (VVT) is the process of altering the timing of a valve lift event, and is often used to improve performance, fuel economy or emissions. It is increasingly being used in combination with variable valve lift systems. There are many ways in which this can be achieved, ranging from mechanical devices to electro-hydraulic and camless systems. Increasingly strict emissions regulations are causing many automotive manufacturers to use VVT systems.
A compound steam engine unit is a type of steam engine where steam is expanded in two or more stages. A typical arrangement for a compound engine is that the steam is first expanded in a high-pressure (HP) cylinder, then having given up heat and losing pressure, it exhausts directly into one or more larger-volume low-pressure (LP) cylinders. Multiple-expansion engines employ additional cylinders, of progressively lower pressure, to extract further energy from the steam.
The Walschaerts valve gear is a type of valve gear invented by Belgian railway mechanical engineer Egide Walschaerts in 1844 used to regulate the flow of steam to the pistons in steam engines. The gear is sometimes named without the final "s", since it was incorrectly patented under that name. It was extensively used in steam locomotives from the late 19th century until the end of the steam era.
In a piston engine, the valve timing is the precise timing of the opening and closing of the valves. In an internal combustion engine those are usually poppet valves and in a steam engine they are usually slide valves or piston valves.
The Stephenson valve gear or Stephenson link or shifting link is a simple design of valve gear that was widely used throughout the world for all kinds of steam engines. It is named after Robert Stephenson but was invented by his employees.
In a steam engine, cutoff is the point in the piston stroke at which the inlet valve is closed. On a steam locomotive, the cutoff is controlled by the reversing gear.
The slide valve is a rectilinear valve used to control the admission of steam into, and emission of exhaust from, the cylinder of a steam engine.
A Corliss steam engine is a steam engine, fitted with rotary valves and with variable valve timing patented in 1849, invented by and named after the American engineer George Henry Corliss of Providence, Rhode Island.
A throttle is the mechanism by which fluid flow is managed by constriction or obstruction.
A hydraulic motor is a mechanical actuator that converts hydraulic pressure and flow into torque and angular displacement (rotation). The hydraulic motor is the rotary counterpart of the hydraulic cylinder as a linear actuator. Most broadly, the category of devices called hydraulic motors has sometimes included those that run on hydropower but in today's terminology the name usually refers more specifically to motors that use hydraulic fluid as part of closed hydraulic circuits in modern hydraulic machinery.
The uniflow type of steam engine uses steam that flows in one direction only in each half of the cylinder. Thermal efficiency is increased in the compound and multiple expansion types of steam engine by separating expansion into steps in separate cylinders; in the uniflow design, thermal efficiency is achieved by having a temperature gradient along the cylinder. Steam always enters at the hot ends of the cylinder and exhausts through ports at the cooler centre. By this means, the relative heating and cooling of the cylinder walls is reduced.
An expansion valve is a device in steam engine valve gear that improves engine efficiency. It operates by closing off the supply of steam early, before the piston has travelled through its full stroke. This cut-off allows the steam to then expand within the cylinder. This expanding steam is still sufficient to drive the piston, even though its pressure decreases as it expands. As less steam is supplied in the shorter time for which the valve is open, use of the expansion valve reduces the steam consumed and thus the fuel required. The engine may deliver two-thirds of the work, for only one-third of the steam.
The double-beat valve, drop valve or equilibrium valve is a type of poppet valve arranged to allow it to be opened against a high pressure with a minimum of force. One of its uses is in steam engines to admit steam to the cylinders and to release the exhaust. In stationary steam engines it is usually operated by trip valve gear while in railway locomotives a valve gear such as Caprotti is used.
A Johnson Bar is a control lever on a steam locomotive, used to control the timing of the admission of steam into the locomotive's cylinders. By controlling this timing, the amount of power delivered to the wheels is regulated, as is the direction that the wheels rotate, giving the lever the alternate name of the reversing lever. This is the term employed in British English, while the term 'Johnson Bar' is the norm in the United States.
Frederick Ellsworth Sickels or Sickles was an American inventor, best known for the invention of a cut-off valve for steam engines in 1841.
High-speed steam engines were one of the final developments of the stationary steam engine. They ran at a high speed, of several hundred rpm, which was needed by tasks such as electricity generation.
A bash valve is a valve within a piston engine, used to control the admission of the working fluid. They are directly actuated valves, operated by contact between the piston and the valve tip.
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