Stirling Engine Burner

PCI is developing novel catalytic burners for Stirling engines. External combustion engines, like the Stirling engine, have benefits over their internal combustion counterparts due to their ability to remain completely sealed from the elements and their nearly silent operation. Stirling engines are inherently robust, quiet, and only require an external heat source for operation. These characteristics make these engines ideal candidates for military and commercial applications where clean, quiet power is desired. Unfortunately, burners using logistics fuels, such as JP-8 or diesel, have struggled to meet acceptable efficiency requirements and are troubled by problems such as sulfur intolerance or 'wet stacking'. PCI has developed a Stirling engine burner that thrives on high sulfur logistics fuels and is continuously optimizing the design to offer engine manufacturers a unique solution for:

  • Various engine sizes (40 We-3 kWe)
  • Different engine designs
  • Quick startup
  • High system efficiency (15-20%)
  • Extreme compactness and light weight
  • Fuel atomization and mixing

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Stirling Burners


With the support of the United States Army in the form of a Phase II SBIR contract, PCI has adapted its catalytic technology to create a highly efficient and ultra-compact distillate fuel burner for generating electrical power from Stirling engine systems. PCI's Stirling engine burner features a portable lightweight design that is easily scalable for large kW-scale Stirling engines as well as adaptable for various fuel types. With minimal maintenance, PCI's burner will enable dependable battlefield power generation in near silence with low emissions and low thermal profile using logistic fuels. Financial benefits will stem from better efficiency and the reduced logistic burden of supplying power and energy to the field, which is often accomplished using numerous batteries or noisy portable generators to support squad missions.

We encourage manufacturers and users seeking to explore the possibilities of portable low emission electricity production or high efficiency fuel combustion to contact us to explore how PCI's Stirling engine burner technology may help them.

Contact PCI to learn more about how our solutions may be adapted for your needs.