A solenoid is a coil of wire which acts as a magnet while carrying the electric current. It is the cylindrical coil, which is wound into the tightly packed helix. Actually, the word “Solen” means “pipe, the channel’ and “eidos” means “form, shape” in Greek. The core material which is used in the solenoid is by nature ferromagnetic. It means magnetic lines of flux are concentrated which increases the inductance of the coil. The solenoid engine’s working is based on the law of electromagnetic attraction. It is having many applications in the industry also. This article will discuss the Solenoid Engine in a brief but systematic way.
Introduction to Solenoid Engine
A solenoid engine can be defined as an engine that works by passing electricity through the coils which are making the pistons move back and forth due to electromagnetism. André-Marie Ampère was the French scientist, who have invented the calendric coil (i.e. solenoid).
Michael Faraday, a British scientist, has created two experiments for the demonstration of electromagnetic rotation. A solenoid engine generally works on the law of electromagnetic attraction. Coil magnetism is there to attract the plunger. A spark distributor is used for causing the electromagnet to move as per the position of the piston. It is possible without the use of sensors or microcontrollers.
When the solenoid is holding, then it consumes the electrical energy. But, it doesn’t produce any output. All the electrical energy is further converted to heat against the resistance of the coil. Therefore, its efficiency is zero. Actually, the basic principle of an electric motor and a solenoid is the same.
Variety of Solenoid Engine
Depending on the material of construction, design, and function, varieties are as follows:
- Rotary solenoid
- Linear solenoid
- AC laminated solenoid
- DC C and D frame solenoid
In the scientific term, it also refers to any device which can convert electrical energy to mechanical energy using the solenoid. It creates the magnetic field through the electric current. It uses the magnetic field to create linear motion.
Advantages of Solenoid Engine
- The solenoid engine can cause zero atmospheric pollution.
- These engines are very useful as an alternative to fossil fuels.
- The engine has more efficiency whereas the torque produced is less.
- The reaction time needed for the solenoid engine is very quick.
- The core of the solenoid engine is useful for applying mechanical force to the valve.
- Electromagnets find the application of indoor locking systems as a secure closure. For example, computer printers and fuel injector as well as gears in cars are using solenoids.
FAQs about Solenoid Engine
Q.1: What are the symptoms of the solenoid of bad performance?
Answer: Some common possible signs of a failing or bad starter solenoid when someone turns the key:
- Nothing happens. Or
- The sound of a single “click” is coming from the engine compartment Or
- Repeated “clicking” sounds, commonly indicate a dead battery.
Q.2: How one can empower the solenoid?
Answer: To drive the solenoid the easy method is to switch the current on and off. It can be done possibly with a low-side MOSFET switch as well as with the current recirculation diode.