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I would like to thank everyone who helped to see this

seminar to completion. In particular, I would like to thank my seminar
coordinators Mr. K. C. Mathew and Mr. Venu P. for his moral support and
guidance to complete my seminar on time.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Dr. E. M.

Somasekharan Nair, Head of the department Mechanical Engineering for his
support and encouragement.

I express my gratitude to all my friends and the classmates

for their support and help on this seminar.


The cam has been an integral part of the IC engine from its invention. The cam
controls the breathing channels of the IC engines, that is, the valves through
which the fuel air mixture (in SI engines) or air (in CI engines) is supplied and
exhaust driven out.
Beside by demands for better fuel economy, more power, and less
pollution, engineers around the world are pursuing a radical camless design that
promises to deliver the internal-combustion engines biggest efficiency
improvement in years. The aim of all this effort is liberation from a constraint
that has handcuffed performance since the birth of the internal-combustion
engine more than a century ago. Camless engine technology is soon to be a
reality for commercial vehicles. In the camless valve train, the valve motion is
controlled directly by a valve actuator - theres no camshaft or connecting
mechanisms. Precise electronic circuit controls the operation of the mechanism,
thus bringing in more flexibility and accuracy in opening and closing the
valves. The seminar looks at the working of the electronically controlled
camless engine with electro-mechanical valve actuator, its general features and




The engines powering todays vehicles, whether they burn gasoline or

diesel fuel, rely on a system of valves to admit fuel and air to the cylinders and
to let exhaust gases escape after combustion. Rotating camshafts with
precision-machined egg-shaped lobes, or cams they push open the valves at the
proper time and guide their closure, typically through an arrangement of
pushrods, rocker arms, and other hardware. Stiff springs return the valves to
their closed position.


List of Figures...4


1.1PushRod Engine..........6

Camless Engine.......9
2.1 Camless Valve Train..................................................................10
2.1.1 Electromechanical Poppet Valve.....10
2.1.2 Electromechanical Ball Valve........14
2.1.3 Electrohydraulic Poppet Valve........16

3. Advantages Of Camless Engine.....18

4. Conclusion.......21
5. References22


Figure 1: Single Cam and Valve...7

Figure 2: Conventional Valve Train Mechanism.8
Figure 3: Basic Block Diagram Of Camless Engine....9
Figure 4: Electromechanical Poppet Valve10
Figure 5: Different Views Of Poppet Valve...12
Figure 6: Assembly Of Electromechanical Ball Valve...14
Figure 7: Hardware Of Electrohydraulic Valve Train....16
Figure 8: Graph Of Stroke VS Degrees..19


The cam has been an integral part of the IC engine from its invention. The cam
controls the breathing channels of the IC engines, that is, the valves through which
the fuel air mixture (in SI engines) or air (in CI engines) is supplied and exhaust
driven out. Besieged by demands for better fuel economy, more power, and less
pollution, motor engineers around the world are pursuing a radical camless design
that promises to deliver the internal combustion engines biggest efficiency
improvement in years. The aim of all this effort is liberation from a constraint that
has handcuffed performance since the birth of the internal-combustion engine more
than a century ago. Camless engine technology is soon to be a reality for
commercial vehicles. In the camless valve train, the valve motion is controlled
directly by a valve actuator theres no camshaft or connecting mechanisms
.Precise electrohydraulic camless valve train controls the valve operations, opening,
closing etc. The seminar looks at the working of the electrohydraulic camless
engine, its general features and benefits over conventional engines.
The engines powering todays vehicles, whether they burn gasoline or diesel
fuel, rely on a system of valves to admit fuel and air to the cylinders and let exhaust
gases escape after combustion. Rotating steel camshafts with precision-machined
cams they push open the valves at the proper time and guide their closure, typically
through an arrangement of pushrods, rocker arms, and other hardware. Stiff springs
return the valves to their closed position. In an overhead-camshaft engine, a chain or
belt driven by the crankshaft turns one or two camshafts located atop the cylinder
head. A single overhead camshaft (SOHC) design uses one camshaft to move
rockers that open both inlet and exhaust valves.


Pushrod engines have been installed in cars since the dawn of the horseless
carriage. A pushrod is exactly what its name implies. It is a rod that goes from the
camshaft to the top of the cylinder head which push open the valves for the passage
of fuel air mixture and exhaust gases. Each cylinder of a pushrod engine has one arm
(rocker arm) that operates the valves to bring the fuel air mixture and another arm to
control the valve that lets exhaust gas escape after the engine fires. There are several
valve train arrangements for a pushrod.
Crankshaft is the engine component from which the power is taken. It
receives the power from the connecting rods in the designated sequence for onward
transmission to the clutch and subsequently to the wheels. The crankshaft assembly
includes the crankshaft and bearings, the flywheel, vibration damper, sprocket or
gear to drive camshaft and oil seals at the front and rear.
The camshaft provides a means of actuating the opening and controlling the
period before closing, both for the inlet as well as the exhaust valves, it also
provides a drive for the ignition distributor and the mechanical fuel pump. The
camshaft consists of a number of cams at suitable angular positions for operating the
valves at approximate timings relative to the piston movement and in the sequence
according to the selected firing order. There are two lobes on the camshaft for each
cylinder of the engine; one to operate the intake valve and the other to operate the
exhaust valve.


When the crank shaft turn the cam shaft the cam lobs come up under the
valve lifter and cause the lifter to move upwards. The upward push is carried by the
pushrods through the rocker arm. The rocker arm is pushed by the pushrod, the other
end moves down. This pushes down on the valve stem and cause it to move down
thus opening the port. When the cam lobe moves out from under the valve lifter, the
valve spring pulls the valve back upon its seat. At the same time stem pushes up on
the rocker arm, forcing it to rock back. This pushes the push rods and the valve lifter
down, thus closing the valve. The figure-1, shows cam-valve arrangement in
conventional engines

Figure 1: Single cam and valve

Figure 2: Conventional valve train mechanism

Since the timing of the engine is dependent on the shape of the cam lobes
and the rotational velocity of the camshaft, engineers must make decisions early in
the automobile development process that affect the engines performance. The
resulting design represents a compromise between fuel efficiency and engine power.
Since maximum efficiency and maximum power require unique timing
characteristics, the cam design must compromise between the two extremes.
This compromise is a prime consideration when consumers purchase
automobiles. Some individuals value power and lean toward the purchase of a high
performance sports car or towing capable trucks, while others value fuel economy
and vehicles that will provide more miles per gallon.
Recognizing this compromise, automobile manufacturers have been
attempting to provide vehicles capable of cylinder deactivation, variable valve
timing (VVT), or variable camshaft timing (VCT). These new designs are mostly
mechanical in nature. Although they do provide an increased level of sophistication,
most are still limited to

discrete valve timing changes over a limited range.


To eliminate the cam, camshaft and other connected mechanisms, the Camless
engine makes use of three vital components the sensors, the electronic control unit
and the actuator. The basic block diagram of a camless engine is shown in figure 3.




Figure 3: Basic Block Diagram Of Camless Engine

Mainly five sensors are used in connection with the valve operation. One for
sensing the speed of the engine, one for sensing the load on the engine, exhaust gas
sensor, valve position sensor and current sensor. The sensors will send signals to the
electronic control unit.
The electronic control unit consists of a microprocessor, which is provided with
a software algorithm. The microprocessor issues signals to the solid-state circuitry

based on this algorithm, which in turn controls the actuator, to function according to
the requirements.


In the past, electro hydraulic camless systems were created primarily as
research tools permitting quick simulation of a wide variety of cam profiles. For
example, systems with precise modulation of a hydraulic actuator position in order
to obtain a desired engine valve lift versus time characteristic, thus simulating the
output of different camshafts. In such systems the issue of energy consumption is
often unimportant. The system described here has been conceived for use in
production engines. It was, therefore, very important to minimize the hydraulic
energy consumption. The different types of valve trains are as follows:
This type of system uses an armature attached to the valve stem. The outside
casing contains a magnetic coil of some sort that can be used to either attract or repel
the armature, hence opening or closing the valve.


Figure 4: Electromechanical Poppet Valves

Most early systems employed solenoid and magnetic attraction/repulsion
actuating principals using an iron or ferromagnetic armature. These types of
armatures limited the performance of the actuator because they resulted in a variable
air gap. As the air gap becomes larger (ie when the distance between the moving and
stationary magnets or electromagnets increases), there is a reduction in the force. To
maintain high forces on the armature as the size of the air gap increases, a higher
current is employed in the coils of such devices. This increased current leads to
higher energy losses in the system, not to mention non-linear behaviour that makes it
difficult to obtain adequate performance. The result of this is that most such designs
have high seating velocities (i.e. the valves slam open and shut hard!) and the system
cannot vary the amount of valve lift.
The electromechanical valve actuators of the latest poppet valve design eliminate
the iron or ferromagnetic armature. Instead it is replaced with a current-carrying
armature coil. A magnetic field is generated by a magnetic field generator and is
directed across the fixed air gap. An armature having a current-carrying armature

coil is exposed to the magnetic field in the air gap. When a current is passed through
the armature coil and that current is perpendicular to the magnetic field, a force is
exerted on the armature. When a current runs through the armature coil in either
direction and perpendicular to the magnetic field, an electromagnetic vector force,
known as a Lorentz force, is exerted on the armature coil. The force generated on
the armature coil drives the armature coil linearly in the air gap in a direction
parallel with the valve stem. Depending on the direction of the current supplied to
the armature coil, the valve will be driven toward an open or closed position. These
latest electromechanical valve actuators develop higher and better-controlled forces
than those designs mentioned previously. These forces are constant along the
distance of travel of the armature because the size of the air gap does not change.
The key component of the Siemens-developed infinitely variable
electromechanical valve train is an armature-position sensor. This sensor ensures the
exact position of the armature is known to the ECU at all times and allows the
magnetic coil current to be adjusted to obtain the desired valve motion.


Figure 5: Different views of Poppet Valves

Now referring within Figures 5, FIG. (1 to 4), an electromechanical valve actuator

of the poppet valve variety is illustrated in conjunction with an intake or exhaust
valve (22). The valve (22) includes a valve closure member (28) having a cylindrical
valve stem (30) and a cylindrical valve head (32) attached to the end of the stem
(30).The valve actuator (20) of the poppet valve system generally includes a housing
assembly (34) consisting of upper and lower tubular housing members (36) and (42).
A magnetic field generator consisting of upper and lower field coils (48) and (52), a
core (56) consisting of upper and lower core member (58) and (68), and an armature
(78) suitably connected to the valve stem (30). The armature coil is preferably made
from aluminum wire or other electrically conductive lightweight material, which is
highly conductive for its mass. Minimizing the armature mass is especially
important in view of the rapid acceleration forces placed on it in both directions.

The ability of the electromechanical valve actuator to generate force in either

direction and to vary the amount of force applied to the armature in either direction
is an important advantage of this design. For instance, varying the value of the
current through the armature coil and/or changing the intensity of the magnetic field
can control the speed of opening and closing of the valve. This method can also be
used to slow the valve closure member to reduce the seating velocity, thereby
lessening wear as well as reducing the resulting noise.
This system is able to operate without valve springs as shown in FIG.1 or can
equally be equipped with them as shown in FIG. (6 & 7).
Siemens report that a special software algorithm is used to control the actuator coil
currents such that the valves are decelerated to a speed near zero as they land - in
conjunction with a switching time of barely three milliseconds. For the valves this
means minimal wear and minimum noise generation. The 16-valve four cylinder
engine that is currently undergoing tests in Germany, by Siemens, is equipped with
16 valve actuators and the corresponding armature-position sensors. A Siemens
ECU is used and two cable rails connect the actuators to it. A 42-volt startergenerator provides the power.


An alternative to the conventional poppet valve for use in camless valve trains is a
ball valve. This type of electromechanical valve system consists of a ball through
which a passage passes. If the ball is rotated such that the passage lines up with
other openings in the valve assembly, gas can pass through it. (Exactly like the ball


valves many of us use valve is accomplished by electromagnets positioned around

its exterior to control our boost).

Figure 6:Assembly Of Electromechanical Ball Valve

Referring to Figure 6, the valve housing (7) is shown in two pieces. Ball valve (8)
has two rigidly attached pivots (12). The disc (10) is permanently attached and
indexed to the ball valve and contains permanent magnets around its perimeter. The
electromagnets (11) are situated on both sides of the ball valve (8) and they are fixed
to the valve housing. The electromagnets are controlled through the ECU. A crank
trigger sensor on the crankshaft provides information about the position of the


pistons relative to top dead centre. Thus, at top dead centre of the power stroke, the
ECM could be used to fix the polarity of both electromagnets so that they are of
opposite polarity to the magnets in the ball valve, rotating the ball valve to the
closed position.
The substitution of a simple, efficient ball valve and valve housing arrangement in
a four stroke reciprocation piston engine eliminates all the independent moving parts
in the valve train. This may even be an improvement over the poppet valve camless
system - the ball valve needs only to rotate on its axis to achieve the desired flow
conditions, rather than be accelerated up and down in a linear fashion. A partially
open ball valve state may also be able to be used to create more turbulence.
Electromechanical valve train implementation would not be possible with a
normal 12V electrical system. The automotive industry has chosen a 42V electrical
system as the next automotive standard. Consequently, the energy demand of EMVT
can be optimally matched by a crankshaft-mounted starter-generator (KSG - in
Siemens speak) operating at 42V; it is integrated in the flywheel and designed for
the starting process as well as generator operation.


In general terms, present designs of electrohydraulic valves comprise poppet
valves moveable between a first and second position. Used is a source of pressurized
hydraulic fluid and a hydraulic actuator coupled to the poppet valve. The motion
between a first and second position is responsive to the flow of the pressurized

hydraulic fluid. An electrically operated hydraulic valve controls the flow of the
pressurized hydraulic fluid to the hydraulic actuator. In one design, the provision is
made for a three-way electrically operated valve to control the flow of the
pressurized hydraulic fluid to the actuator. This supplies pressure when electrically
pulsed open, and dumps actuator oil to the engine oil sump when the valve is
electrically pulsed to close. The use of engine oil as the hydraulic fluid simplifies
and lowers the cost of the design by removing the need for a separate hydraulic

Figure 8: Hardware of electrohydraulic valve train


The basic design of the electrohydraulic valve train hardware is illustrated in

Figure 8. The engine poppet valves (22) and the valve springs (24) that are used to
reset them are shown. The poppet valves are driven by hydraulic actuators (26),
which are controlled by electrically operated electro-hydraulic valves (28) supplying
hydraulic fluid to the actuators via conduit (29). The preferred hydraulic fluid is
engine oil, supplied to the electro-hydraulic valves by the pressure rail (30). An
engine-driven hydraulic pump (32) supplies the oil pressure, receiving the oil from
the engine oil sump (34). The pump output pressure is also limited by an unloader
valve (36), as controlled by an accumulator (38) connected to the oil pressure rail.
With this design the hydraulic pump could be periodically disconnected, such as
under braking, so that the valve train would run off the stored accumulator hydraulic
As is the trend with all modern engine systems, the camless engine has an even
greater reliance on sensors. The valve actuation and control system typically needs a
manifold pressure sensor, a manifold temperature sensor, a mass flow sensor, a
coolant temperature sensor, a throttle position sensor, an exhaust gas sensor, a high
resolution engine position encoder, a valve/ignition timing decoder controller,
injection driver electronics, valve coil driver electronics, ignition coil driver
electronics, air idle speed control driver electronics and power down control
A valve developed by Sturman Industries is said to be about six times faster than
conventional hydraulic valves. To achieve such speeds, it uses a tiny spool
sandwiched between two electrical coils. By passing current back and forth between
the coils, a microprocessor-based controller can quickly move the spool back and
forth, thereby actuating the engine valves in accordance.



Electro hydraulic camless valve train offers a continuously variable and

independent control of all aspects of valve motion. This is a significant advancement
over the conventional mechanical valve train. It brings about a system that allows
independent scheduling of valve lift, valve open duration, and placement of the
event in the engine cycle, thus creating an engine with a totally uncompromised
operation. Additionally, the ECV system is capable of controlling the valve velocity,
perform selective valve deactivation, and vary the activation frequency. It also offers
advantages in packaging. Freedom to optimize all parameters of valve motion for
each engine operating condition without compromise is expected to result in better
fuel economy, higher torque and power, improved idle stability, lower exhaust
emissions and a number of other benefits and possibilities.
Camless engines have a number of advantages over conventional engines.
In a conventional engine, the camshaft controls intake and exhaust valves.
Valve timing, valve lift, and event duration are all fixed values specific to the
camshaft design. The cams always open and close the valves at the same
precise moment in each cylinders constantly repeated cycle of fuel-air
intake, compression, combustion, and exhaust. They do so regardless of
whether the engine is idling or spinning at maximum rpm. As a result, engine
designers can achieve optimum performance at only one speed. Thus, the
camshaft limits engine performance in that timing, lift, and duration cannot
be varied.


The improvement in the speed of operation valve actuation and control

system can be readily appreciated with reference to Figure 9. It shows a
comparison between valve speeds of a mechanical camshaft engine and the
camless engine valve actuation. The length of the valve stroke in inches
versus degrees of rotation of a mechanical camshaft is illustrated.

Figure 8: Graph of stroke v/s degrees

When graphed, the cycle of opening and closing of a valve driven by a
mechanical camshaft will display a shape similar to a sine curve. The opening
period (as measured in crankshaft degrees) remains constant for any engine
load or rpm. However, the cycle of opening and closing of valves driven by
the electromechanical valve actuators operates much faster. Designed to
match valve-opening rate at the maximum engine rpm, the electromechanical
valve actuators open the valve at this same rate regardless of engine operating
conditions. Because of this improved speed, greater flexibility in

programming valve events is possible, allowing for improved low-end torque,

lower emissions and improved fuel economy. The massive opening period for
the electromechanically driven valve can also be seen.
But in a cam less engine, any engine valve can be opened at anytime to any
lift position and held for any duration, optimizing engine performance. The
valve timing and lift is controlled 100 percent by a microprocessor, which
means lift and duration can be changed almost infinitely to suit changing
loads and driving conditions. The promise is less pollution, better fuel
economy and performance.

Another potential benefit is the cam less engines fuel savings. Compared to
conventional ones, the cam less design can provide a fuel economy of almost
7-10% by proper and efficient controlling of the valve lifting and valve

The implementation of camless design will result in considerable reduction

in the engine size and weight. This is achieved by the elimination of
conventional camshafts, cams and other mechanical linkages. The elimination
of the conventional camshafts, cams and other mechanical linkages in the
camless design will result in increased power output.

The better breathing that a camless valve train promotes at low engine speeds
can yield 10% to 15% more torque. Camless engines can slash nitrogen
oxide, or NOx, pollution by about 30% by trapping some of the exhaust gases
in the cylinders before they can escape. Substantially reduced exhaust gas HC
emissions during cold start and warm-up operation.



1. An electro hydraulic camless valve train was developed for a camless engine.
Initial development confirmed its functional ability to control the valve timing,
lift, velocity, and event duration, as well as to perform selectively variable
deactivation in a four-valve multicylinder engine.
2. Review of the benefits expected from a camless engine points to substantial
improvements in performance, fuel economy, and emissions over and above
what is achievable in engines with camshaft-based valve trains.
3. The development of a camless engine with an electro hydraulic valve train
described in this report is only a first step towards a complete engine
optimization. Further research and development are needed to take full
advantage of this system exceptional flexibility.



[1] Michael M.Schechter and Michael B.Levin Camless Engine, SAE paper [960581]
[2] John B. Heywood, Internal combustion engine fundamentals
[3] www.machinedesign.com
[4] www.halfbakery.com
[5] www.deiselnet.com
[6] www.greendieseltechnology.com
[7] www.autospeed.com
[8] P. Kreuter, P. Heuser, and M. Schebitz, "Strategies to Impove SI-Engine Performance
by Means of Variable Intake Lift, Timing and Duration", SAE paper [920449].