Encyclopedia > H engine

  Article Content

H engine

An H engine (or H-block) is an engine configuration in which the pistons are aligned so that if viewed from the front appear to be in a horizontal letter H.

An H engine can be viewed as two horizontally opposed engines, one atop the other. The "two engines" each have their own crankshaft, which are then geared together at one end for power-take-off. This leads to a worse power-to-weight ratio than simpler configurations with only one shaft. The only obvious advantage of the H configuration is to allow the building of reasonably short engines with more than 12 cylinders, their compact size being useful as aircraft engines where their small size allows for better streamlining[?].

The H configuration is therefore very uncommon. Known examples are:

  • The BRM H-16 Formula One engine, which was a major failure. Jackie Stewart[?] is believed to have said "This piece of metal is better used as a ship's anchor than as a power plant".
  • The Napier Rapier[?], Dagger[?] and Sabre airplane engines. Unlike the BRM, the Sabre eventually matured into a superb design.

Subaru produce water-cooled flat-4 and flat-6[?] engines that are strangely marketed as H-4 and H-6, despite the fact that their configuration has nothing to do with a real H engine

All Wikipedia text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

  Search Encyclopedia

Search over one million articles, find something about almost anything!
  Featured Article
Thomas a Kempis

... one of the copies being preserved at Darmstadt in five volumes. In its teachings he was widely read, and his works abound in Biblical quotations, especially ...

This page was created in 23.8 ms