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USM Engines Laboratory

Director: Prof. Dr. Horizon Gitano

The USM Engines Laboratory has been active in experimental research in the area of engines and vehicles since 2006. Our general focus is on energy efficiency, emissions reductions and alternative fuels and energy sources. Most of our research is oriented towards motorcycles, however we also perform studies on 3-wheelers, automobiles and trucks as well as engines down to 30 cc. Industrial research forms the backbone of our work, and we have a partner company for commercialization of lab related technologies, Focus Applied Technologies, which develops dynamometers and controllers and electronic fuel injection systems. We provide contract research and development, testing services, consulting and educational programs and seminars. We have several professional technicians, and a graduate student force of around 20, with up to 40 undergraduates contributing effort to various projects. The USM Engines Laboratory also participates in various vehicular competitions such as the Perodua Eco Challenge (which we won in 2009 and 2010), the Shell Eco Marathon and Malaysian Formula Cart (EIMA) Race.

We are looking to expand our facilities between 2012 and 2015 to include a total of 4 professors working in the following areas:

  • Internal Combustion Engines
  • Vehicle Dynamics
  • Electric/Hybrid Propulsion
  • Alternative Energies

We are actively seeking PhD students and post-docs to join our team and contribute to the research already in progress. Interested students are encouraged to contact Dr. Horizon Gitano.

Specific areas of research

  • Two Stroke Engine Direct Fuel Injection
    • 2-Stroke small displacement (100-300cc) Diesel Engines
    • Gaseous Fuel Direct Injection
  • Small Engine (100-600cc) four stroke Electronic Fuel Injection
    • LPG Port Fuel Injection
    • Gasoline Port Fuel Injection
  • Electric Vehicle Design testing and optimization
  • Hybrid Vehicles
  • Vehicle Usage Patterns and Traffic Studies
  • Automotive Performance Tuning
  • CNG Engine Optimization
  • Engine Testing and Dynamometry
  • Fundamental Engine Efficiency Improvements
    • Over-Expanded Engine Cycles (Atkinson)
    • Friction Reduction Materials Research
    • Ammonia Activated Charcoal Waste Hear Air Conditioning System
  • Low wind speed Wind Turbines
  • Wind Turbine Power Controllers

Engines lab resources

  • Automotive Engine Dynamometer
  • Automotive Chassis Dynamometer (coming in 2011)
  • 20kW 2-Roller chassis dynamometer
  • 20 kW Engine Dynamometer
  • Several 2 to 10kW Engine Dynamometers
  • Various 5-gas analyzers and Diesel Smoke meter
  • Various Gravimetric Fuel consumption meters
  • Wave Engine Simulation Software
  • Solid Works, Ansis, Cosmose Flow and various other general purpose software packages

Additional mechanical engineering resources

Via the university we have access to extensive fabrication facilities and analysis equipment.

  • FTIR, optical and stylus profilometers
  • Scanning electron microscopes with X-ray diffraction
  • Full machine shop (Also have access to extensive list of external vendors for fabrication)
    • Manual and CNC mills
    • Lathes
    • Welding
    • Casting (Al) parts <12 dia.
  • Computational
    • Full CAD capabilities
    • Solid Works, Fluent, Ansis, Cosmo License (multi user)
  • High-speed camera
  • Particle imaging velocimetry

Human resources

  • Undergraduates
  • Masters students
  • PhD students

Industrial partners

  • Modenas — Donation of 4 motorcycles plus 2 engines; supporting EFI project
  • Yanmar — Donation of Diesel engine plus injection hardware
  • Proton — Donation of EFI Engine plus controller hardware
  • Seagate — Supporting Student Projects
  • OmniluX — Supporting Student Projects
  • USM — Seed Funding for DI work

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