I’ve discovered an easy way to play “lazy reporter”. Using the “Press This” option in WordPress, you can post articles to your blog. This one seems relevant to me as it is an unconventional propulsion system. Moreover, wave disks employ shock waves to compress the working fluid.
The above article reports on experimental research underway at the Michigan State University by Dr. Norbert Muller et al, but it seems a bit over-optimistic. MSU has received $2.5 million federal stimulus grant from the US Department of Energy to build a prototype engine.
Here is a link to a 2008 paper entitled “Numerical Investigation of the Wave Disk Micro-engine Concept” that is quite critical of the viability of wave rotors. One of the four authors is also collaborating in the MSU study. The above paper shows results of numerical simulations and concludes thus:
A wave disk can be an effective compression device andin conjunction with the combustion chamber can form anefficient gas generator but a wave engine design on thebasis of only unsteady processes cannot be an efficientdevice. In specific wave-disk geometry, torque generationis possible, but it is not as effective as in the case ofsteady-state machines.