Sandia National Laboratories in conjunction with Stirling Energy Systems (SES) has increased the capabilities of the National Solar Thermal Test Facility’s Engine Test Facility to include a gas fired burner for advance testing on the Kochums 4-95 Stirling engine. SES is using this engine in its current solar energy production system and is performing a redesign for manufacturability and reliability. The gas burner will aid in this task allowing a safe, controlled test environment. A burner was developed for the SES engine and tested at Arizona University. The gas and air controls were scavenged from an old gas fired Stirling engine test performed in the 1990s. Goals for the burner are to have the ability to do attended tests, but then have unattended tests. Due to equipment limitations, the gas and air control skid did not have these capabilities and was modified with newer equipment such as a PLC controller. Software to run the burner efficiently was developed and the system is prepared for testing a Stirling engine.

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