What exactly is your responsibility?
My responsibility is to test engines, as implied in the name of my position: Engine Test Bench Technician. The engines that pass through our department are tested in predefined conditions and with predefined properties, thanks to which we can then adjust and set the technical parameters of the engines to ensure that they comply with prescribed standards and cope with the load levels typical of standard engine operation.
How long does an average engine test take, and what exactly do you monitor?
Each engine test comes with specific requirements, which determines how long it will take. For example, a long-term test may take as long as a thousand hours because we review several engine properties simultaneously. Besides the test process itself, this requires thorough pre-test preparation – a change in parameters on the measurement device, the test properties, fuel properties, etc. On the other hand, short-term test measurements could be completed within an hour. The key benefit of the tests we conduct are the engine performance results, which we can then use to review the engine’s resistance and adaptability in the selected conditions.
What can you simulate in these tests?
To be able to release an engine for the production process, we need to be 100% sure that the engine will not let the user down in any circumstances. That is why we simulate situations that you would not normally come across in standard operation. For example, we measure the engine’s performance limits, i.e. its operation at maximum load. We also conduct temperature-related driving simulations, where we transfer data from the road surface to the test equipment to check the engine’s resistance parameters. Obviously, all these operations are derived from the prototypes that have been tested.