The Katech testing facilities are multi-faceted starting with engine dynamometer testing. All three of the engine dynamometers are geared for performance applications. Two are rated over 12,000 RPM and 1000 horsepower. The third cell has 10,000 RPM capabilities and will handle 800 horsepower. All cells can handle the delivery of multiple fuels, which allows for calibration of many differing applications. Included in the testing equation is the availability to conduct cylinder pressure measurement.
Validated durability/reliability is key to the Katech strategy of providing world class OE products and racing engines. All cells have programmed test schedule capability. For motorsports, Katech has racetrack simulations to imitate many race tracks. The durability cycle exactly simulates the track, whether it is a timed sprint race or a 24 hour endurance cycle. Corporate customers may want to use their own established test schedule or work with Katech to develop a new test schedule to validate a new requirement.
One major loss of power and fuel economy is due to friction. The Katech motoring cell has a variety of capabilities with a primary ability to measure parasitic losses. This ability allows you to isolate the item or items that are robbing the engine of performance. This assembly is driven by 300 horsepower engine, additionally Katech has sub-assembly testing carts which capture the specific items causing the loss (i.e.; oil pump and water pump carts).
This same cell has been used to monitor engines to validate designs or identify the root causes of failure. It is equipped with vibration equipment which permits the operator to detect early signs of potential failures through sonic impluses.
In the last ten years, more performance engine testing facilities have added cells to analyze valvetrain stability. At Katech this is done by driving a block/head assembly with a 30 horsepower electric motor. Katech started utilizing this tool over 25 years ago, which is another reason for Katech’s race track durability success. Today this testing is primarily conducted to confirm simulation results, another capability that Katech has recently added.
Analyzing the valvetrain dynamics ensures the valvetrain meets requirements. Whether this is high limiting engine speed for high output, or controlled valvetrain acceleration for excellent field warranty.
The Katech valvetrain cell may also be used to prove valvetrain durability. Many customers are encouraged by simulations results but want physical testing of the valvetrain to confirm results. This testing can run using the same pre-programmed race track or OE test schedule. This testing validates all valvetrain components from cam to valve actuation. Should any of these components not be up to the requirement, the test allows you to correct the issue on the valvetrain dollar, saving time and damage to an expensive prototype engine.
Air flow is key to achieving high specific power output. The flowing of cylinder heads coupled with hand porting used to be the first stop in building race engines. Now the consistency of CNC porting by the manufacturer has almost made hand porting obsolete.
Measuring the air flow capacity of a cylinder head is still important for racing engines or a manufacturer’s prototype cylinder heads, where there may be part to part variation in the prototype manufacturing process. Prototype engine performance variation has been trace back to variations in cylinder head flow. For all the above reasons Katech has maintained this measurement capability.
Katech holds the ability to test fuel systems with the fuel flow cell. This capability was used extensively during the development of the V4 GDI motorcycle engine. Fuel rail design and fuel rail pressure dynamics were studied so as to not to be a source of cylinder to cylinder variation. New port fuel system configurations continued to be checked and tested prior to first application as well as the occasional vintage mechanical injection system.
Katech is ready to support customers with any engine and vehicle sub-system development needs. Individual car owners have come to Katech to solve custom engine installation issues. Katech has worked with race teams to solve problems or optimize race car cooling systems, oil systems, air induction systems and other vehicle systems.
For OE and corporate customers Katech has developed custom engine development and testing solutions to significantly reduce product development time and cost. For instance, our latest portable boost cart systems can provide charged air up to 3Bar gage pressure irrespective of engine speed or load. If you have any similar or other engineering and custom fabrication needs, please don’t hesitate to contact our engineering staff at (586) 791-4120.