This thesis provides a method for electronically actuating valves used in an internal
combustion engine. This method for valve actuation looks at utilising the expected
change to a 42V standard in motor vehicles. It also provides a simplified model
detailing how this principle works.
The advantage of electronic valve actuation is that it provides an easy method of
infinitely varying the valve timing in internal combustion engines. The relationship
between the desired open and shut intervals of the intake and exhaust valves vary with
respect to engine speed. While some car manufacturers have developed methods of
varying valve timing, most of these are still mechanical methods, and don’t allow for
an infinitely variable timing profile. Improved timing will result in reduced fuel
consumption and improved power in motor vehicles.
Characteristics of solenoids are examined. These characteristics are used to design
different mechanical layouts of the valve in order to reduce the required force by the
With the use of the electronics from James Kennedy’s PUMA arm control board, the
working of the simplified model is explained. The software is currently written to
generate a PWM signal for driving the solenoid, and to modify that signal in response
to an encoder input.