The modified hypocycloid engine incorporates a unique geared drive that imparts straight-line, sinusoidal motion to the one-piece piston and rod assembly. These kinematic characteristics provide a variety of potential benefits not possible with traditional slider-crank kinematics. Perfect engine balance is achieved through the use of two sets of counterweights. The absence of piston side thrust promises reductions in piston assembly friction and piston slap, even with smaller piston skirts. Additional potential benefits include improved combustion characteristics and reduced piston manufacturing costs. Although simpler hypocycloid designs provide the same motion, the modified hypocycloid engine reduces gear and crankshaft loading.
A description and design details of a prototype engine currently under construction are presented. Patented design improvements over previous hypocycloid designs are described. These improvements reduce crankshaft stresses, ensure a compact crankshaft with convenient assembly and dissassembly, and control deviations from the desired straight-line piston motion that are caused by gear tooth backlash.