Allen Park’s EcoMotors, Generac Agree To Engine Development Partnership

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The opposed-piston, opposed cylinder engine. EcoMotors International illustration.

The opposed-piston, opposed cylinder engine. EcoMotors International illustration.

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Allen Park-based EcoMotors International and Waukesha, Wis.-based Generac Power Systems Inc. (NYSE: GNRC) have announced an agreement to jointly develop the revolutionary EcoMotors Opoc engine for Generac products.

The agreement is designed to enable Generac to apply Opoc technology to its market-leading range of residential, commercial and industrial power generation solutions.

Said EcoMotors CEO Don Runkle: “Together, our organizations look forward to bringing clean, efficient Opoc-powered Generac products to the power generation market in the near future.”

Aaron Jagfeld, CEO of Generac, added: “This agreement with EcoMotors reflects Generac’s proud role as the standby power generation industry leader and innovator, and our continual quest to bring new technologies that add value for our customers and shareholders.”

Allen Gillette, Generac’s senior vice president of engineering, noted the inherent functional advantages of the Opoc engine. He said that “this remarkably compact and flexible engine can play a key role in ensuring that Generac products remain responsive to our customer needs, and to further distinguish Generac in terms of advanced technologies that are environmentally sound.”

Established in early 2008, EcoMotors is commercializing the unique Opoc engine for use in cars, light trucks, commercial vehicles, aerospace, marine, agriculture, auxiliary power units, generators and more.

Opoc stands for opposed piston, opposed cylinder. This engine’s operation provides the  emissions benefit of 4-cycle engines, the simplicity of 2-cycle engines, the power density of the less well known opposed piston engine, and recent advances in computer science and thermodynamics, all tied together in a new and proprietary engine architecture. It comprises two opposing cylinders per module, with a crankshaft between them; each cylinder has two pistons moving in opposite directions. This innovative design configuration eliminates the cylinder head and valve train components of conventional engines, offering an efficient, compact and simple core engine structure. The result is an engine family that is lighter, more efficient and economical, with lower exhaust emissions. More at http://ecomotors.com.

The two primary investors in EcoMotors are Khosla Ventures and Bill Gates. Khosla Ventures, based in Menlo Park, Calif., offers venture assistance, strategic advice and capital to entrepreneurs in cleantech and IT fields. Vinod Khosla, who founded the firm in 2004, is a founder of Sun Microsystems and was formerly a general partner at Kleiner Perkins.

Since 1959, Generac has been a manufacturer of backup power generation products serving residential, light commercial and industrial markets. Generac’s power systems range in output from 800 watts to 9 megawatts and are available through a broad network of independent dealers, retailers and wholesalers. Generac is committed to developing a long-term vision that promotes environmentally responsible products, processes and partnerships and strives to be a positive contributor of sustainable growth in the backup power generation industry. More at www.generac.com.

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