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INTERNAL COMBUSTION ENGINES By: Dennis Ballou and Barbara McCord This paper presents the essential design

features of the spark ignition (SI), piston-cylinder engine. Referring to Figure 11:

S - Stroke s - Distance between crank and wrist pin axes - Crank angle B - Bore r Connecting rod a Crankshaft offset Vc Clearance volume Vd Displacement volume TDC Top dead center BDC Bottom dead center Figure 1: Piston and Cylinder Geometry of Reciprocating Engine

Definitions Top Dead Center (TDC) - Maximum travel of piston toward cylinder head. The cylinder volume at TDC is called the clearance volume. Bottom Dead Center (BDC) - Minimum travel of piston toward crankshaft. Bore (B) - Cylinder diameter (piston diameter = cylinder diameter - clearance). Stroke (S) - Distance between TDC and BDC. Displacement (Vd) - volume of cylinder between TDC and BDC.

Reference 1., p. 36.

The Four-Stroke, Air Standard Ideal Otto Cycle2 Referring to Figure 23: First stroke, Process 6-1 (Induction). The piston travels from TDC to BDC with the intake valve open and the exhaust valve closed (some valve overlap occurs near the ends of strokes to accommodate the finite time required for valve operation). The temperature of the incoming air is increased 25-35 C over the surrounding air as the air passes through the hot intake manifold. Second Stroke, Process 1-2 (Compression). At BDC the intake valve closes. The piston travels to TDC compressing the cylinder contents at constant entropy. Just before TDC, the spark plug fires initiating combustion. Combustion, Process 2-3. This process is modeled at constant volume even though combustion requires a finite time in a real engine (cylinder is moving). Peak cycle temperature and pressure occur at state 3. Third Stroke, Process 3-4 (Expansion or power stroke). With all valves closed, the piston travels from TDC to BDC. The process is modeled at constant entropy. Exhaust Blowdown, Process 4-5. Near the end of the power stroke, the exhaust valve is opened. The resulting pressure differential forces cylinder gases out dropping the pressure to that of the exhaust manifold. The process is modeled at constant volume.

Figure 2: Ideal air-Standard Otto Cycle

Fourth Stroke, Process 5-6. With the exhaust valve open, the piston travels from BDC to TDC expelling most of the remaining exhaust gases. Note: The four strokes require two complete revolutions of the crankshaft.

2 3

Id., pp. 25 and 72. Id., p. 73.

Thermodynamic Analysis Process 6-1. Process 1-2. Process 2-3. Where:

w61 = P0 ( v1 v6 ) w1 2 = ( u1 u2 ) w23 = 0 q12 = 0 q23 = qin = ( u3 u2 ) Q23 = Qin = m f QLHV c

QLHV = lower heating value of the fuel c = combustion efficiency - the fraction of fuel actually burned.
Its usual range is 0.95-0.98.4

QLHV c = ( AF + 1) ( u3 u2 )

AF = air/fuel ratio

Note: This expression assumes that the cylinder contents are air (e.g. 15 lb of air plus one lb of fuel per lb of fuel). Process 3-4. Process 4-5. Process 5-6.

q3 4 = 0 q45 = ( u5 u4 )

w3 4 = ( u3 u4 )

w5 6 = P0 ( v6 v5 )

Thermal efficiency.

t =

wnet q = 1 out qin qin

wnet =

i, j( i j )

wi j = q q in out

Ideal Thermal Efficiency - Cold Air Standard If we express differences in internal energy as differences in temperature multiplied by a constant specific heat (cold air standard), the ideal thermal efficiency becomes:

T T th = 1 + 1 4 T3 T2
We can use the following relationships for the isentropic processes occurring between states 1-2 and 3-4 for the cold air standard (constant properties).

T1 v2 = T2 v1

k 1


T3 v4 = T4 v3

k 1

Id., p. 59.

Substituting these expressions into the equation for ideal thermal efficiency above results in an expression for ideal efficiency in terms of the compression ratio; thus:

th = 1 ( r )

1 k

where r=compression ratio = v1 / v 2 = N 4 / 3 Compression Ratio Modern spark ignition engines have compression ratios of 8-115. Compression ratio is limited primarily by the tendency of the fuel to detonate resulting in the condition called knock. Otherwise, the ratio should be as high as practicable if good efficiency is the primary goal. Figure 36 shows that the efficiency rises steeply with compression ratio up to about r c = 4 and then tapers off somewhat while continuing to rise.

Figure 3: Thermal Efficiency as a Function of Compression Ratio for SI Engines Work The output of any heat engine is work. The work is done by pressurized gas moving a piston. It is given by: W = PdV or w = Pdv Two other definitions of work are useful in describing and comparing internal combustion engines. Indicated work is that obtained by measuring cylinder pressure and plotting it against volume to obtain the actual cycle representation (the so-called indicator card). Integration of the resulting closed curve gives the indicated work. Brake work is that obtained by measuring shaft torque and converting to power. The difference between indicated work and brake (or shaft) work represents losses due to mechanical friction and parasitic loads on the engine (such as the air conditioning compressor, oil pump, alternator, etc). Brake work and indicated work are related by:

wi =
5 6

wb m , where m is the mechanical efficiency of the engine.

Id., p. 41. Id., p. 77.

Mean Effective Pressure The mean effective pressure is an artificial pressure which when multiplied by the displacement gives the work. It is useful in comparing performance of different engines; thus:

w = ( mep ) v mep = w W = vd Vd

Indicated mean effective pressure (imep) and brake mean effective pressure (bmep) are:

imep =

wi vd w bmep = b vd

Typical values of bmep:7 Naturally aspirated SI engines Naturally aspirated CI engines Turbocharged CI engines 850-1050 kPa (120-150 psi) 700-900 kPa (100-130 psi) 1000-1200 kPa (145-175 psi) Specific Fuel Consumption Brake specific fuel consumption (bsfc) and indicated specific fuel consumption (isfc) are defined by:

bsfc =

& m f & W

isfc =

& m f & W

Bsfc as a function of engine speed is shown below8: Figure 2-12, Pulkrabek, p57

Figure 4: Brake Specific Fuel Consumption as a Function of Engine Speed

7 8

Id., p50. Id., p57.

Stroke For a given displacement volume, the longer the stroke the smaller the bore and combustion chamber surface area thus resulting in less heat energy loss. The longer stroke, however, means higher piston speeds and thus higher friction. Bore Bore sizes of engines range from 0.5m to 0.5 cm (20-.02 in). See Table 1 below. Bore-to-Stroke Ratio The bore-to-stroke ratio (B/S) of most modern automobile engines is very nearly unity (B/S = 1 implies a square engine). Some are slightly over square (B/S >1); others are under square (B/S <1). To keep height to a minimum, the engine should be designed over square. B/S for small engines is usually in the range 0.8-1.2. Table 1 Typical Engine Operating Parameters 9 PARAMETERS BORE (cm) STROKE (cm) DISPLACEMENT/cyl (L) SPEED (RPM) POWER/cyl (kW) AVERAGE PISTON SPEED (m/s) POWER/DISPLACEMENT (kW/L) BMEP (kPa) Model Airplane Two-Stroke Cycle 2.00 2.04 0.0066 13,000 0.72 8.84 109 503 Air-Fuel Ratio The Air-Fuel ratio (AF) is the ratio of the cylinder air mass (or mass rate) to the fuel mass (or mass rate). The ideal (stoichiometric) AF for gasoline is very close to 15. The normal range for AF in gasoline automobile engines is 12-18. Combustion can occur in the range 6-19. Automobile Four-Stroke Cycle 9.42 9.89 0.69 5200 35 17.1 50.7 1170 Large Stationary Two-Stroke Cycle 50.0 161 316 125 311 6.71 0.98 472

AF =

& ma m = a & mf m f

Fuel-Air Ratio and Equivalence Ratio The Fuel-Air ratio is the reciprocal of the Air-Fuel ratio. The Equivalence ratio ratio divided by the ideal fuel-air ratio.


is the actual fuel-air

FAactual AFideal = FAideal AFactual

An equivalence ratio less than one is said to be lean; greater than one, rich. Inlet Air Density

Id., p. 37.

Air entering the cylinder will depart from the standard sea level ambient condition (14.7 psia, 537 R) because of pressure drops in the manifold, air cleaner, etc. and some pre-heating. Furthermore, the fuel vapor at maximum power will reduce inlet-air density by about 2 %. For preliminary design, assume a pressure drop of 4 % and a temperature increase of 10 % of the Fahrenheit value. Torque and Brake Horsepower We can derive a formula for torque and brake horsepower using the geometry of a prony brake. A schematic diagram of a prony brake is shown below.10

Figure 5: Adaptation of Prony Brake for Power Measurement

A friction band is tightened around the flywheel (radius, r) of the engine. A friction force, f, acting at distance r, therefore opposes engine rotation. The moment thus produced is balanced by a force F acting with a moment arm R . The shaft torque is thus:

= rf = RF
The work during a single revolution is 2 and the engine power is equal to work per revolution times the rotational speed:

&= 2 N W
Caution!!!! Be very careful with units to ensure consistency.


Reference 3., p 4-8.

Volumetric Efficiency Volumetric efficiency is defined as the ratio of the actual air mass drawn into the engine during one cycle to that corresponding to atmospheric conditions. Thus:

v = ma / aVd

& v = nm a / aVd N

ma = actual mass of air in & m a = steady-state air flow in

a = air density at atmospheric conditions Vd = displacement N = engine speed n = revolutions per cycle
Typical values of volumetric efficiency are in the range 75-90%. Mean Piston Speed11 Piston speed is limited by inertia stresses and requirements for reliability and durability and is chosen by reference to previous experience with similar engines. Where maximum fuel economy is desired, select a piston speed from the range 1000-1200 ft/min (5-6 m/s). To keep engine size to a minimum, the highest practical rated speed should be used. For automobile engines, high rated speeds can be used because maximum engine speed is seldom used. Taylor12 advises that 3500 ft/min for a 2-valve head and push-rod gear would be reasonable for a 200 bhp passenger automobile engine. See Table 13-1, Taylor (Reference 2, Vol. 1), for mean piston speeds used in US practice. Friction and Power to Drive Auxiliaries The difference between the internal power produced in the cylinder (ihp) and that measured at the crankshaft (bhp) is accounted for by these factors: power to overcome friction in pistons, bearings, cams and other moving parts and power to drive auxiliaries such as oil, water and power steering pumps (fhp). We express this difference by the following equation:

fhp = ihp bhp

Or, in terms of mean effective pressure:

fmep = imep bmep

For preliminary design, fmep can be estimated from Figure 6 (taken from Taylor) 13, which is reprinted below.

11 12

Reference 2., Vol.2. Id., p 385. 13 Id., Vol. 2, p 382.

Figure 6: Curves for Estimating Friction mep of 4 Cycle Engines

DESIGN PROCEDURE 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. Select a compression ratio and air-fuel ratio for reasonable efficiency; and a fuel with an appropriate octane rating. Estimate volumetric and combustion efficiencies. Perform a hot air-standard analysis of the cycle and find net work (Btu/lb), specific displacement (ft3/lb), imep, isfc and thermal efficiency. Adjust imep to reflect changes from the ideal hot air standard cycle. Actual imep is about 75% of ideal (Otto cycle) imep14. Select an appropriate mean piston speed. Estimate friction mep (fmep) from Figure 6. Calculate brake mean effective pressure (bmep). Calculate total required piston area.

&= W

( bmep ) Vd vN

U p = 2 SN

&= W

( bmep ) Ap vU p

Vd = A p S

Where: Up = mean piston speed; S = stroke (in), N = engine speed Or, expressing the equation with units attached:

( W ) hp =

( bmep ) lb f ( S ) in
in 2

( U p ) ft rev PS hpg min Ap ) ( v ) ( PS ( n ) rev min ( 2 ) ( S ) in ( 33000 ) ft g lb f

Where: 8.

= volumetric efficiency; PS = Power stroke, n = rev/cycle

Divide the total piston area, Ap, by the number of cylinders to get area per cylinder; then calculate the bore. Multiply bore by 1.20 and by the number of cylinders to get the approximate engine length.15 Stroke. To keep engine height to a minimum, select a relatively small S/B ratio, say, 0.8. Then calculate the stroke and engine speed.


10. Calculate brake thermal efficiency and brake specific fuel consumption. 11. Estimate engine weight. SI truck and bus engines weigh in the range 1.36-2.93 lb per cubic inch of displacement. Automobile engines probably approach the lower of these figures. 16
14 15

Reference 1., p 83. Reference 2, v.2, p.387. 16 Id, p. 387.


REFERENCES 1. 2. 3. 4. Pulkrabek, W.W., Engineering Fundamentals of the Internal Combustion Engines, Prentice-Hall, 1997. Taylor, C.F., The Internal-Combustion Engine in Theory and Practice, 1 and 2ed., The MIT Press, 1982. Gill, P.W., et al, Fundamentals of Internal Combustion Engines, U. S. Naval Institute, 1952. Black, W.Z., and Hartley, J.G., Thermodynamics, English.SI Version, HarperCollins, 1966.