A high efficiency harmonic engine based on a resonantly reciprocating piston expander that extracts work from heat and pressurizes working fluid in a reciprocating piston compressor. The engine preferably includes harmonic oscillator valves capable of oscillating at a resonant frequency for controlling the flow of working fluid into and out of the expander, and also preferably includes a shunt line connecting an expansion chamber of the expander to a buffer chamber of the expander for minimizing pressure variations in the fluidic circuit of the engine. The engine is especially designed to operate with very high temperature input to the expander and very low temperature input to the compressor, to produce very high thermal conversion efficiency.
I. FEDERALLY SPONSORED RESEARCH OR DEVELOPMENT
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-7405-ENG-48 between the United States Department of Energy and the University of California for the operation of Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory.