Phagwara, Punjab

TERM PAPER

Topic:-

OTTO CYCLE VS DIESEL CYCLE

Submitted To: Mr. Tukesh Soni

Submitted By:Namandeep Singh RB4912B35 1090403 1

ACKNO WLEDGEMENT

I Namandeep Singh student of B.Tech (M.E.), RB4912B35.I would like to say thanks to Mr. Tukesh Soni. Without his help, I would not able to complete my term paper which was on the topic ‘OTTO CYCLE VS DIESEL CYCLE’ I hope that my term paper considered all the proper information which would surely satisfy you. In my term paper I have mentioned all the current changes in climate and reasons behind it.

OTTO CYCLE
An Otto cycle is an idealized thermodynamic cycle which describes the functioning of a typical reciprocating piston engine. The Otto cycle is constructed out of: TOP and BOTTOM of the loop: a pair of quasiparallel adiabatic processes 2. LEFT and RIGHT sides of the loop: a pair of parallel isochoric processes
1.

The adiabatic processes are impermeable to heat: heat flows into the loop through the left pressurizing process and some of it flows back out through the right depressurizing process, and the heat which remains does the work. The maximum theoretical thermal efficiency of the Otto cycle is: η = 1 − r(1 − γ) where r is the engine's compression ratio, and γ is the heat capacity ratio for the working fluid. Because γ>1, the efficiency increases with increasing compression ratio. The Otto cycle consists of adiabatic compression, heat addition at constant volume, adiabatic expansion, and rejection of heat at constant volume. In the case of a fourstroke Otto cycle, technically there are two additional processes: one for the exhaust of waste heat and combustion products (by isobaric compression), and one for the intake of cool oxygen-rich air (by isobaric expansion); however, these are often omitted in a simplified analysis. Even though these two processes are critical to the functioning of a real engine, wherein the details of heat transfer and combustion chemistry are relevant, for the simplified analysis of the thermodynamic cycle, it is simpler and more convenient to assume that all of the waste-heat is removed during a single volume change.

1857. We do not even know if it was a new patent or an extension of the patent granted three days earlier. 700 of Volume VII of the Patent Office of the Reign of Piedmont." f.History The four-stroke engine was first patented by Alphonse Beau de Rochas in 1861. was German engineer Nicolaus Otto. That is why the four-stroke principle today is commonly known as the Otto cycle and four-stroke engines using spark plugs often are called Otto engines. two Italians (Eugenio Barsanti and Felice Matteucci) invented an engine that was rumored to be very similar. Eugenio Barsanti and Felice Matteucci. June 4 1853 The first person to build a working four stroke engine. at Turin. We do not have the text of the patent request. only a photo of the table which contains a drawing of the engine. "The request bears the no. in about 1854–57. on December 30. . Before. a stationary engine using a coal gas-air mixture for fuel (a gas engine). but the patent was lost.

Beginning with the Wright brothers' first flight. most general aviation or private airplanes are powered by internal combustion (IC) engines. many airplanes have used internal combustion engines to turn propellers to generate thrust. we must consider both the mechanical operation of the machine and thethermodynamic processes that enable the machine to produce useful work. Today. we must study the basic thermodynamics of gases. Gases have . When discussing engines. thrust is generated by some kind of propulsion system. much like the engine in your family automobile.To move an airplane through the air. On this page we consider the thermodynamics of a four-stroke IC engine. To understand how a propulsion system works.

and volume V that contains the gas. Heat is released during combustion which increases both the temperature and the pressure. It is possible to perform a series of processes. the piston moves back into the cylinder. in which the state is changed during each process. The combustion occurs very quickly and the volume remains constant.variousproperties that we can observe with our senses. we begin at the lower left with Stage 1being the beginning of the intake stroke of the engine. according to the equation of state. and the pressure increases because work is done on the gas by the piston. and the values of these properties determine the state of the gas. On this page we discuss the Otto Thermodynamic Cycle which is used in all internal combustion engines. the gas volume decreases. Stage 4 begins . changes the values of the state variables in a manner which is described by the laws of thermodynamics. mass. Such a series of processes is called a cycle and forms the basis for understanding engine operation. Careful. temperature T. Stage 3 is the beginning of the combustion of the fuel/air mixture. and the gas volume increases as fuel/air mixture is drawn into the cylinder through the intake valve. Using the engine stage numbering system.Stage 2 begins the compression stroke of the engine with the closing of the intake valve. The figure shows a p-V diagram of the Otto cycle. Between Stage 2 and Stage 3. The pressure is near atmospheric pressure and the gas volume is at a minimum. including the gas pressure p. Between Stage 1 and Stage 2 the piston is pulled out of the cylinder with the intake valve open. A thermodynamic process. such as heating or compressing the gas. but the gas eventually returns to its original state. The workdone by a gas and the heat transferred to a gas depend on the beginning and ending states of the gas and on the process used to change the state. scientific observation has determined that these variables are related to one another. The pressure remains constant.

the power stroke of the engine. At the end of the exhaust stroke. . and the pressure falls as work is done by the gas on the piston. The volume remains constant and the pressure adjusts back to atmospheric conditions. Between Stage 4 and Stage 5. In reality. These losses are normally accounted for by efficiency factors which multiply and modify the ideal result. but the area (work) is always less than the ideal value. the piston is driven towards the crankshaft. The area enclosed by the cycle on a p-V diagram is proportional to the work produced by the cycle. the shape of the p-V diagram is similar to the ideal. the ideal cycle does not occur and there are many losses associated with each process. The difference between the work done by the gas and the work done on the gas is the area enclosed by the cycle curve and is the work produced by the cycle. the volume in increased. At Stage 5 the exhaust valve is opened and the residual heat in the gas is exchanged with the surroundings. During the cycle. On this page we have shown an ideal Otto cycle in which there is no heat entering (or leaving) the gas during the compression and power strokes. For a real cycle. work is done on the gas by the piston between stages 2 and 3. and instantaneous burning occurring at constant volume. conditions have returned to Stage 1 and the process repeats itself. The work times the rate of the cycle (cycles per second) is equal to the power produced by the engine. no friction losses. Work is done by the gas on the piston between stages 4 and 5. Stage 6 begins the exhaust strokeof the engine during which the piston moves back into the cylinder. the volume decreases and the pressure remains constant.

below).Diesel cycle Thermodynamics [show]Branches [show]Laws [show]Systems [show]System properties [show]Material properties [show]Equations [show]Potentials [show]History and culture [show]Scientists v·d·e The Diesel cycle is the thermodynamic cycle which approximates the pressure and volume of the combustion chamber of the Diesel engine. The idealized Otto cycle of a gasoline engine approximates constant volume during that phase. This is an idealized mathematical model: real physical Diesels do have an increase in pressure during this period. generating more of a spike in a p-V diagram. but it is less pronounced than in the Otto cycle. invented by Rudolph Diesel in 1897. . It is assumed to have constant pressure during the first part of the "combustion" phase (V2 to V3 in the diagram.

and the heat that remains does the work. The ideal Diesel cycle follows the following four distinct processes (The color references refer to the color of the line on the diagram. .The Idealized Diesel Cycle p-V Diagram for the Ideal Diesel cycle. The isentropic processes are impermeable to heat: heat flows into the loop through the left expanding isobaric process and some of it flows back out through the right depressurizing process. where p ispressure and v is specific volume.): Process  Process (red)  Process  Process (green)  1 to 2 is isentropic compression (blue) 2 to 3 is reversible constant pressure heating 3 to 4 is isentropic expansion (yellow) 4 to 1 is reversible constant volume cooling The Diesel is a heat engine: it converts heat into work. The image on the left shows a p-V diagram for the ideal Diesel cycle. The cycle follows the numbers 1-4 in clockwise direction.

It has the following formula under cold air standard analysis: where ηth is thermal efficiency α is the cut-off ratio (ratio between the end and start volume for the combustion phase) r is the compression ratio γ is ratio of specific heats (Cp/Cv) The cut-off ratio can be expressed in terms of temperature as shown below: T3 can be approximated to the flame temperature of the fuel used.Work in (Win) is done by the piston compressing the working fluid  Heat in (Qin) is done by the combustion of the fuel  Work out (Wout) is done by the working fluid expanding on to the piston (this produces usable torque)  Heat out (Qout) is done by venting the air  Maximum thermal efficiency The maximum thermal efficiency of a Diesel cycle is dependent on the compression ratio and the cut-off ratio. The flame temperature can be approximated to the adiabatic flame temperature of the fuel with corresponding air-to-fuel ratio and compression .

The Diesel cycle is a combustion process of a reciprocating internal combustion engine. and submarines. fuel is ignited by heat generated by compressing air in the combustion chamber. The additional complexity for the Diesel formula comes around since the heat addition is at constant pressure and the heat rejection is at constant volume. This is in contrast to igniting it with a spark plug as in the Otto cycle (fourstroke/petrol) engine. In it. the ideal Otto cycle will be more efficient. T1 can be approximated to the inlet air temperature. Applications . Comparing the two formulae it can be seen that for a given compression ratio (r). Diesel-electric locomotives. The formula is more complex than the Otto cycle (petrol/gasoline engine) relation that has the following formula. both of these cycles are only idealizations. If a petrol engine were to have the same compression ratio. a Diesel engine will be more efficient overall since it will have the ability to operate at higher compression ratios. and the actual behavior does not divide as clearly or sharply. into which fuel is injected. then knocking (self-ignition) would occur and this would severely reduce the efficiency. whereas in a Diesel engine. However. And the ideal Otto cycle formula stated above does not include throttling losses. The actual thermal efficiency will be significantly lower due to heat and friction losses. the self ignition is the desired behavior. which do not apply to Diesel engines. power generation. This formula only gives the ideal thermal efficiency. Diesel engines (heat engines using the Diesel cycle) are used inautomobiles. p3. Additionally.pressure. The Otto cycle by comparison has both the heat addition and rejection at constant volume.

Both types depend on special fuels (easily obtainable in such limited quantities) for their ignition timing. high-efficiency cycle leads to much longer engine life and lower operational costs. In North America. Diesel engines are primarily used in large trucks. See the development of the hot bulb engine and indirect injection for historical significance. These advantages also make the Diesel engine ideal for use in the heavy-haul railroad environment. 0. make up a large percentage of the very largest Diesel engines.Diesel engines The Diesel engine has the lowest specific fuel consumption of any large internal combustion engine. but this becomes less attractive with increasing compression. Glow engines use glow plugs.) A historical implication of this is that the Diesel engine would eventually have been invented without the aid of electricity. where the low-stress. Other internal combustion engines without spark plugs Many model airplanes use very simple "glow" and "Diesel" engines.16 kg/kWh) for very large marine engines. (It was the research of Nicolas Léonard Sadi Carnot that established the thermodynamic value of compression. . "Diesel" model airplane engines have variable compression ratios. Two-stroke Diesels with high pressure forced induction. particularly turbocharging. Some 19th century or earlier experimental engines used external flames.26 lb/hp.h (0. for ignition. exposed by valves.

As a budding mechanical engineer at the Technical University in Munich. . Diesel Cycle Operation The Diesel cycle is the cycle used in the Diesel (compression-ignition) engine. His first prototype engine was built in 1893. In this cycle the heat is transferred to the working fluid at constant pressure. power and exhaust strokes. The process corresponds to the injection and burning of the fuel in the actual engine. a year after he applied for his initial patent. but it wasn't until the third prototype was built in 1897 that theory was put into practice with the first 'Diesel' engine. The cycle in an internal combustion engine consists of induction. compression.Rudolph Diesel Rudolph Diesel was born in Paris of Bavarian parents in 1858. he became fascinated by the 2nd law of thermodynamics and the maximum efficiency of a Carnot process and attempted to improve the existing thermal engines of the day on the basis of purely theoretical considerations.

and to take advantage of the momentum of the exhaust gases. 180. each of the strokes invariably begin and end outside the 0. each of the strokes in the cycle complete at Top Dead Centre (TDC) or Bottom Dead Centre (BDC). in order to overcome mechanical valve delays and the inertia of the new charge air. 540 and 720 (0) degree crank positions (see valve timing chart).Induction Stroke The induction stroke in a Diesel engine is used to draw in a new volume of charge air into the cylinder. but in practicality. 360. . most diesel engines use turbochargers to force air into the cylinder during the induction stroke. As the power generated in an engine is dependent on the quantity of fuel burnt during combustion and that in turn is determined by the volume of air (oxygen) present. From a theoretical perspective.

Compression Ignition Compression ignition takes place when the fuel from the high pressure fuel injector spontaneously ignites in the cylinder. the separation of fuel from the charge air eliminates problems with auto-ignition and therefore allows Diesel engines to operate at much higher compression ratios than those currently in production with the Otto Cycle. In this cycle. . but as there is a finite time for the fuel to ignite (ignition lag) in practical engines. fuel is injected at TDC. fuel is injected into the cylinder before the piston reaches TDC to ensure that maximum power can be achieved. This is synonymous with automatic spark ignition advance used in Otto cycle engines. The purpose of the compression stroke in a Diesel engine is to raise the temperature of the charge air to the point where fuel injected into the cylinder spontaneously ignites.Compression Stroke The compression stroke begins as the inlet valve closes and the piston is driven upwards in the cylinder bore by the momentum of the crankshaft and flywheel. In the theoretical cycle.

fuel injector pump. it's the stroke during which the gases formed during combustion are ejected from the cylinder. As the rapidly burning mixture attempts to expand within the cylinder walls. but also overcomes the work of compression and mechanical losses incurred in the cycle (valve opening and closing.Power Stroke The power stroke begins as the injected fuel spontaneously ignites with the air in the cylinder. The rotational energy is imparted as momentum to the flywheel which not only provides power for the end use. This needs to be as complete a process as possible. As the name suggests. etc. . The linear motion of the piston is converted into rotary motion through the crankshaft. alternator. water pump. Exhaust Stroke The exhaust stroke is as critical to the smooth and efficient operation of the engine as that of induction.). as any remaining gases displace an equivalent volume of the new charge air and leads to a reduction in the maximum possible power. it generates a high pressure which forces the piston down the cylinder bore.

there is a point in each full cycle when both exhaust and inlet valves are open. the exhaust valve remains open until after TDC. . in order to effectively remove all of the combustion gases.Exhaust and Inlet Valve Overlap Exhaust and inlet valve overlap is the transition between the exhaust and inlet strokes and is a practical necessity for the efficient running of any internal combustion engine. it is necessary to begin opening the inlet valve before the piston reaches Top Dead Centre (TDC) on the exhaust stroke. Thus. Likewise. The number of degrees over which this occurs and the proportional split across TDC is very much dependent on the engine design and the speed at which it operates. Given the constraints imposed by the operation of mechanical valves and the inertia of the air in the inlet manifold.

And from the T-S diagram we know that T3 is the highest of the peak temperature which is again same for all three cycles under consideration. In this article we will take a collective look at these two cycles in order to compare and contrast them. The 2 Cycles Compared In the last article we compared the three cycles their compression ratio and heat rejection were kept constant for all cycles. In this article we will focus on peak pressure. In the above diagrams the following are the cycles • • Otto cycle: 1 – 2 – 3 – 4 – 1 Diesel cycle: 1 – 2” – 3 – 4 – 1 Remember that we are assuming the same peak pressure denoted by Pmax on the P-V diagram.Introduction In these two articles we studied about Otto cycle and diesel cycle and looked at their thermal efficiency. In this case the compression ratio is different for each cycle and can be found by dividing V1 with the respective V2 . Heat rejection given by the area under 4 – 1 – 5 – 6 in the T-S diagram is also same for each case. peak temperature and heat rejection. so that we can come to know the relative advantages and disadvantages of these cycles. The P-V and T-S diagrams of these three cycles for such a situation are drawn simultaneously as described below.

and exhaust strokes that occur during . The four strokes refer to intake.volumes of each cycle from the P-V diagram. construction machinery and many others. The heat supplied or added in each cycle is given by the areas as follows from the T-S diagram • • Otto cycle: Area under 2 – 3 – 6 – 5 say q1 Diesel cycle: Area under 2” – 3 – 6 – 5 say q3 It can also be seen from the same diagram that q3>q2>q1 We know that thermal efficiency is given by 1 – heat rejected/heat supplied Since heat rejected is same and we know the order of magnitude of heat supplied. combustion (power). Four-stroke engine Four-stroke cycle used in gasoline/petrol engines. Today. trucks. most commonly use afourstroke cycle. internal combustion engines in cars. aircraft. we can combine this information to conclude that Thermal efficiency of these engines under given circumstances is of the following order Diesel>Otto Hence in this case it is the diesel cycle which shows greater thermal efficiency. compression. The right blue side is the intake and the left yellow side is the exhaust. The cylinder wall is a thin sleeve surrounded by cooling water. motorcycles.

the piston descends from the top of the cylinder to the bottom of the cylinder. . the compressed air–fuel mixture is ignited. A stroke refers to the full travel of the piston from Top Dead Center (TDC) to Bottom Dead Center (BDC). A mixture of fuel and air is forced by atmospheric (or greater) pressure into the cylinder through the intake port. This is known as the power stroke. 4. COMPRESSION stroke: With both intake and exhaust valves closed. (See Dead centre. The resulting massive pressure from the combustion of the compressed fuel-air mixture drives the piston back down toward bottom dead center with tremendous force. which is the main source of the engine's torque and power. The cycle begins at Top Dead Center (TDC). 2. EXHAUST stroke. INTAKE stroke: On the intake or induction stroke of the piston .: While the piston is close to Top Dead Center. the piston returns to the top of the cylinder compressing the fuel-air mixture. usually by a spark plug (for agasoline or Otto cycle engine) or by the heat and pressure of compression (for a diesel cycle or compression ignition engine). when the piston is farthest away from the axis of the crankshaft.) 1.two crankshaft rotations per working cycle of the gasoline engine and diesel engine. POWER stroke. 3. reducing the pressure inside the cylinder.: During the exhaust stroke. the piston once again returns to top dead center while the exhaust valve is open. This is known as the compression stroke. The intake valve(s) then close. This action evacuates the products of combustion from the cylinder by pushing the spent fuel-air mixture through the exhaust valve(s).

at Turin. . adiabatic expansion and rejection of heat at constant volume. usually ignored since in an idealized process those do not play any role in the heat intake or work output. "The request bears the no. That is why the fourstroke principle today is commonly known as the Otto cycle and four-stroke engines using spark plugs often are called Otto engines. Compressing the fuel and air into a very small space increases the efficiency of the power stroke. Before. only a photo of the table which contains a drawing of the engine. two Italians (Eugenio Barsanti and Felice Matteucci) invented an engine that was rumored to be very similar." The first person to actually build a car with this engine was German engineer Nikolaus Otto. in about 1854–57. Design and engineering principles Fuel octane rating Internal combustion engine power primarily originates from the expansion of gases in the power stroke. there are also an isobaric compression and an isobaric expansion.History The Otto cycle The four-stroke engine was first patented by Alphonse Beau de Rochas in 1861. on December 30. We do not have the text of the patent request. We do not even know if it was a new patent or an extension of the patent granted three days earlier. 700 of Volume VII of the Patent Office of the Reign of Piedmont. In the case of a four-stroke Otto cycle. heat addition at constant volume. but increasing the cylinder compression ratio also increases the heating of the fuel as the mixture is compressed (following Charles's law). but the patent was lost. The Otto cycle consists of adiabatic compression. 1857.

the calorific value of the fuel. resulting in power loss or even engine destruction. whether it is a two-stroke or fourstroke design. oxygen content of the air and speed (RPM). Air without fuel can be compressed to a very high degree without concern for selfignition. virtually eliminating the risk of damage due to self-ignition. air-to-fuel ratio. The amount of power generated by a piston engine is related to its size (cylinder volume). The octane rating is a measure of the fuel's resistance to self-ignition. losses. and the highly pressurized fuel in the fuel injection system cannot ignite without the presence of air. a fuel which self-ignites at TDC but before the piston has started downwards can damage the piston and cylinder due to the extreme thermal energy concentrated into a very small space with no relief. The premature ignition problem is solved by separately injecting high-pressure fuel into the cylinder shortly before the piston has reached TDC. physical breakage and piston ring flutter can occur. The speed is ultimately limited by material strength and lubrication. pistons and connecting rods suffer severe acceleration forces. A fuel with a greater octane rating allows for a much higher compression ratio. Diesel engines rely on self-ignition for the engine to function. At high engine speed. Alternately. Piston ring flutter occurs when the rings oscillate vertically within the piston .A highly flammable fuel with a low self-ignition temperature can combust before the piston reaches top-dead-center (TDC).volumetric efficiency. Valves. Power output limit The maximum amount of power generated by an engine is determined by the maximum amount of air ingested. by increasing the temperature at which it will self-ignite. potentially forcing the piston backwards against rotation. This damage is often referred to as engine knocking and can lead to permanent engine damage if it occurs frequently.

severely damaging the engine. such as casting flaws. typically located in the cylinder head. valve springs cannot act quickly enough to close the valves. which can be powered by the engine crankshaft. This can be done using some type of air compression device known as a supercharger. while power is wasted in the high pressure exhaust. the supercharger is always running. Mechanically driven supercharging has the disadvantage that some of the output power is used to drive the supercharger. and it can be done by hand or with a CNC machine. Ring flutter compromises the seal between the ring and the cylinder wall which results in a loss of cylinder pressure and power. can be removed. To increase an engine's output power. If an engine spins too quickly. as the air has been . This limits the piston speed for industrial engines to about 10 m/s. Intake/exhaust port flow The output power of an engine is dependent on the ability of intake (air–fuel mixture) and exhaust matter to move quickly through valve ports. Supercharging increases the power output limits of an internal combustion engine relative to its displacement. but there have been designs that allow it to be cut out or run at varying speeds (relative to engine speed). the radii of valve port turns and valve seat configuration can be modified to reduce resistance. with the aid of an air flow bench. This is commonly referred to as 'valve float'.grooves they reside in. irregularities in the intake and exhaust paths. At high speeds the lubrication of piston cylinder wall interface tends to break down. This process is called porting. and it can result in piston to valve contact. and. Most commonly. Supercharging One way to increase engine power is to force more air into the cylinder so that more power can be produced from each power stroke.

It consists of a two piece. When idling. The increased intake volume causes increased exhaust and spins the turbo faster. by means of a turbine. The increased engine power is not immediately available. the engine speed and throttle opening are increased until the exhaust gases are sufficient to 'spin up' the turbocharger's turbine to start compressing much more air than normal into the intake manifold. and at low-to-moderate speeds. before the turbo starts to do any useful air compression. the turbocharger has little effect and the engine operates nearly in a naturally-aspirated manner. the turbine produces little power from the small exhaust volume. and so forth until steady high power operation is reached.compressed twice and then gains more potential volume in the combustion but it is only expanded in one stage. Turbocharging allows for more efficient engine operation because it is driven by exhaust pressure that would otherwise be (mostly) wasted. A longer rod will reduce the sidewise pressure of the piston on the cylinder wall and the stress forces. high-speed turbine assembly with one side that compresses the intake air. due to the need to sharply increase engine RPM. hence increasing . Another difficulty is that the higher exhaust pressure causes the exhaust gas to transfer more of its heat to the mechanical parts of the engine. to build up pressure and to spin up the turbo. When much more power output is required. Rod and piston-to-stroke ratio The rod-to-stroke ratio is the ratio of the length of the connecting rod to the length of the piston stroke. Turbocharging A turbocharger is a supercharger that is driven by the engine's exhaust gases. and the other side that is powered by the exhaust gas outflow. but there is a design limitation known as turbo lag.

Most modern production engines use hydraulic lifters to automatically compensate for valve train component wear. A tappet between valve and cam is a contact surface on which the cam slides to open the valve. It also increases the cost and engine height and weight.000 km) with a feeler gauge. in which each cam directly actuates a valve through a flat tappet. Many engines use one or more camshafts “above” a row (or each row) of cylinders. in which case each cam contacts a push rod. Typically the clearance has to be readjusted each 20. Dirty engine oil may cause lifter failure. as in the illustration. each designed to open a valve during the appropriate part of an intake or exhaust stroke.engine life. conversely. On engines with mechanical valve adjustment excessive clearance will cause noise from the valve train. Valvetrain The valves are typically operated by a camshaft rotating at half the speed of the crankshaft. . Valve clearance Valve clearance refers to the small gap between a valve lifter and a valve stem that ensures that the valve completely closes. In other engine designs the camshaft is in the crankcase. which contacts a rocker arm which opens a valve. An engine where the bore diameter is larger than its stroke length is an oversquare engine. It has a series of cams along its length. A "square engine" is an engine with a bore diameter equal to its stroke length. an engine with a bore diameter that is smaller than its stroke length is an undersquare engine. The overhead cam design typically allows higher engine speeds because it provides the most direct path between cam and valve.000 miles (32.

paralyzed and aroused by disbelief. Reductions in efficiency may be counteracted with an engine control unit using lean burn techniques. This engine works. Sure. there are so many basic things about gasoline and diesel engines that I learned only recently. 35% of the energy generated by combustion is converted into useful rotational energy at the output shaft of the engine. while the remainder appears as waste heat. If it doesn’t start running at the moment the key is turned. we instantly get shocked.years of perfecting. This is necessary for emission controls such as exhaust gas recirculation andcatalytic converters that reduce smog and other atmospheric pollutants. a six-stroke engine may convert more than 50% of the energy of combustion into useful rotational energy. Yet. OTTO CYCLE VS DIESEL CYCLE One cannot be non-fascinated by the performance of a car engine. the reason it works so well is simple . . Modern engines are often intentionally built to be slightly less efficient than they could otherwise be. I listed some of them here.By contrast.Energy balance Otto engines are about 35% efficient – in other words. hoping that you will find something interesting also.

Inside the engine. The gasoline-air mixture can simply withstand higher temperature before selfignition.gasoline is lighter (less dense) and less viscose than diesel . The “only” difference being the (average) length of the hydrocarbon chain . . Thus.Fuels All engines are engineered around fuels. the temperature is high enough for both. it seems that the gasoline will much easier engage into flame then the diesel. there is much higher concentration of gasoline vapors than diesel vapors and therefore the gasoline will ignite more easily. In everyday experience. It means that. at room temperature. Both. when we consider same concentrations of gasoline and diesel vapors. so first we have to discuss fuels. But remember that this is only because the gasoline vaporizes more readily at room temperature.diesel is somewhat better in lubricating things than gasoline In the engine. However. It is also a bit confusing. This is a very important thing to remember. . This makes gasoline a bit more dangerous because it easily creates enough-concentrated vapors that are easy to ignite into fire. Therefore we have to say something about air-fuel mixture properties: the diesel-air mixture will ignite at lower temperature than the gasoline-air mixture.diesel being longer. then the diesel will ignite easier (lower temperature is needed to activate combustion). the gasoline and the diesel to vaporize completely and create rich-enough (flammable) concentrations of vapor.gasoline vaporizes more readily than diesel at room temperature. the gasoline (petrol) and the diesel are hydrocarbons. they have different properties: . fuel is well mixed with air and burned.

high-refined fuel that wont self-ignite even at high compression levels (a 120 octane gasoline?). Rudolph changed the Otto cycle and created the diesel cycle. To make this possible. Lets talk about engines. The gasoline engine inherently has problems with efficiency and/or fuel. The diesel fuel is better for a diesel motor because it selfignites more readily. is happy to ignite even at relatively low temperatures). the diesel engine can use fuel that is not nearly as refined as the highoctane gasoline fuel (thus cheaper). and this is desirable in the diesel cycle. . In addition. However. The difference is that during compression phase. either you can have a low-efficient. or you can have a high-efficient. low-compression engine that uses a cheap fuel. in the gasoline engine there is a limit – the gasoline-air mixture will self ignite once the compression gets too high (because every compression drives temperature increase). In order to improve the efficiency one must increase the compression ratio of an internal-combustion engine (see the bonus section at bottom of this article). The fuel is only injected at the moment the ignition is wanted – when injected into the hot pressurized air the diesel fuel self-ignites immediately (the diesel-air mixture. highcompression engine that uses expensive. So. as we said already.Now we know something about fuels. The diesel engine can use much higher compression levels than the gasoline engine reaching higher efficiency. In diesel engine this problem is solved. Engine basics Mister Rudolph Diesel was aware of the gasoline engine (Otto cycle) problems and wanted to improve it. no fuel is present in the cylinder and thus no self-ignition can happen.

this may not work because gasoline. remember that the diesel fuel is better in lubricating things than the gasoline. if we build the diesel engine to have a really. and diesel-engine manufacturers use this property heavily – so using even lowoctane gasoline in your diesel engine may fail because fuel supplying parts will not be lubricated enough. the diesel fuel is quite lubricating and nonabrasive so it is not an impossible job.If we try to inject gasoline instead of diesel into the diesel engine. Of course. really high compression ratio then even the 120 octane gasoline will self-ignite and our engine will be able to work with almost anything we put in our tank. There is additional problem with diesel – it doesn’t vaporize so readily as the gasoline and because of it. Yes. may not ignite at all. lower fuel restrictions). but it is much more complicated to build than the gasoline engine.) . (However. having much higher self-ignition temperature. such an engine would have to use complicated system of high-pressure injection nozzles to generate rich-enough fuel-air mixtures (as in the diesel engine). In turn. the diesel engine has benefits (high efficiency. but it would have to have very low compression ratio to avoid diesel-air mixture self ignition problems. The gasoline engine has spark plugs to ignite gasoline-air mixture while the diesel engine needs to have complicated system of high pressure injection nozzles that need to inject controlled amount of fine fuel mist into the cylinder at exactly right moment – a quite difficult job (luckily. such an engine would have very poor efficiency (the efficiency is directly connected to the compression ratio). Don’t kill your engine!) How about using diesel in a gasoline engine? Maybe it would be possible to build an Otto-cycle engine that runs on diesel fuel.

only a limited amount of air-fuel mixture is allowed in. Also. The concentration of fuel in this mixture is. the amount of air sucked into the cylinder is always the same. All this moving mass restricts the speed a diesel engine can turn. no mater what is the power level of the engine. (Also notice that the diesel fuel vaporizes quite slowly and. In the diesel engine you will find thick cylinders. of course. rods and valves.) Controlling power There is one profound difference between diesel and gasoline engine. invariable of the . the valve is fully opened allowing the cylinder to suck the maximum amount of the air-fuel mixture in. At full power. thus diesel engine efficiency will be reduced.The diesel engine is much heavier than the gasoline engine – this is because the higher compression ratio produces higher stress on materials. the mixture is always aimed at full combustion (or more or less so – read further about it). at high speed. heavy pistons. note that the concentration of the fuel in the air-fuel mixture is always the same. Here. there won't be enough time for all the fuel to burn out. Thus. there is a special valve (throttle) that restricts the amount of air-fuel mixture that is filled into the cylinder. always high enough to make self-sustained burning. It means that the final pressure level at the end of compression stroke highly varies depending on how much air-fuel mixture was allowed into cylinder during the intake stroke. A typical car diesel engine doesn’t turn faster than 4000rpm. When the engine is idling. The diesel engine is another story. while a gasoline engine goes up to 7000rpm. In the gasoline engine. This is about the amount of air that comes into the cylinder during the first phase of the cycle (intake).

The first one is to make larger cylinders or to increase number of cylinders. In the gasoline engine this will cause premature selfignition of the air-fuel mixture and our engine will break . But of course. The only other way is to burn more fuel in the same amount of time. This approach works well for both. This is the greenest way. The good thing is that the final pressure of the air (just before the fuel is injected) is always the same and so the injected fuel will find nice temperature to burn even if the engine is running at low power level. diesel and gasoline engines. as we already started with pressurized air. and we will be able to burn more fuel producing more power in each engine cycle. If we force two liters of air into one litter cylinder we could get twice the power in each stroke.power level. Supply of air is the major problem (the air is bulky) and there are several ways to do it. not only that we have to increase supply of fuel. Second. but we also have to increase supply of air. What we want is creating a monster. So. at the end of the compression stroke we will end up at much higher pressure-level than in non-force-charged engine. However. However the power is controlled by the amount of the fuel that is injected into the cylinder. Now we know how power is controlled in both engines. The fuel is where the power comes from and if we want power we have to burn it – burn it fast. But that is for ladies. (Even if a very small amount of fuel is injected – smaller than otherwise needed for self-sustained burning – it will all burn out because the surrounding air temperature is high enough). in each cycle more air will come in. we can put more air into the cylinder than it is cylinder’s volume – we simply force it inside by turbocharging or super-charging. So what can we do if we want to get more power? We can improve efficiency.

diesel engines are very limited because of its heavy high-pressureproof design. cam or rod inside a gasoline engine is light and can move very fast without self-breaking. That is why turbo-charging or super-charging is more popular way for boosting power on diesel engines than in gasoline engines.down (except if we use a high-octane fuel that won’t selfignite). Although the same amount of fuel will be burnt in each cycle. Neither gasoline nor diesel are pure and they both contain considerable amounts of impurities. the number of cycles in unit of time will increase and thus we get more power. However.) Third way for getting more power would be to make the engine turn faster. Emission control When a pure hydrocarbon burns in oxygen only water and carbon dioxide is produced. Increasing turning speed of a diesel engine would break the engine apart (except if you use stronger. Even more bad stuff happens when a hydrocarbon burns in the air (nitrogen and oxygen mixture). Especially diesel is known for its high impurity level (maybe partially because the diesel engine can cope with quite low-refined fuels so no high purification is needed in the first place). Thus increasing turning speed is the preferred method of gaining power in the gasoline engine. the diesel engine is by its nature built more robustly than gasoline so increased pressure won’t generate major problems to materials. more expensive materials – but there are not many things better than steel). (In addition. Unfortunately. doesn’t have this problem. in the real life things are more complicated. the gasoline engine is much lighter – every shaft. however. Unfortunately. The diesel engine. If the combustion takes its place at too high temperature the nitrogen will react with oxygen producing various nitro-oxides that are nasty to .

environment. as we discussed above. The fact is. in the internal-combustion engine it is essential to control the combustion temperature at the optimum level. invariable to the throtle level. diesel and gasoline engines. As we told already. So. This controls the peek combustion temperature. As the air-fuel concentration varies greatly depending on the power level of the engine. if there is much oxygen left. Various tricks are used – like restricting the combustion area to only a part of the cylinder or injecting the fuel in several delayed intervals… One regularly used trick seems very charming – the EGR (Exhaust Gas Recirculation): The combustion temperature will be lowered if a part of oxygen in the air is replaced with some inert gas. To decrease the concentration of the oxygen. (Many of my friends with gasoline-powerd cars are puzzled with the questions "why do they measure oxygen (O2) at madatory emission tests?" and "why is it bad to have high oxygen level in the exhaust?". the concentration of the air-fuel mixture is always the same (no mater of the power level of the engine) and so we only need to keep this concentration somewhat below optimal to decrease the combustion temperature. we cannot easily control the combustion temperature. Therefore. In the gasoline engine it is fairly easy. carbondioxyde and water wapor) is supplied back at engine air input. that in the gasoline engine the oxygen to fuel ratio is always almost-ideal and aimed for full combustion. but also reduces the amount of excesive oxygen available for combining with nitrogen. it is a strong indication that the engine is sub-optimaly tuned. and is used on both. The diesel engine is more problematic.) . The EGR is very useful. This ensures for clean exhaust. some of the engine exhaust (concentrated with inert gases.

more of its energy is given to the piston. yes. This difference is converted to mechanical energy of piston. After some . with weaker force. and now you have lower pressure (P2) and lower temperature (T2) of the gas. you start with high pressure (P1) and high temperature (T1) of the combustion gas in the cylinder. Then the piston travels downward for some length to its bottom position.colder and depressurized – because it gives its energy to the piston. Because it uses higher compression ratio. hot and energetic and it pushes the piston downward forcefully. read below. but only indirectly.. but at the same time the gas becomes more and more ‘tired’ and pushes the piston less and less ‘enthusiastically’ – that is. it is. the gas is compressed. During the combustion stroke. the gas becomes more and more ‘tired’ . Large part of the heat energy (maybe more than half) will be expelled through the exhaust pipe and therefore lost. Longer it pushes the piston. aka power) stroke in an engine. Obviously. Some amount of heat energy will be “generated” during combustion (aka expansion. the diesel engine will be able to extract more mechanical energy from heat (that is. the energy contained in gas is now lower (it has lower temperature and lower pressure. the diesel will attain higher efficiency). If you look at the engine in largely simplified way. you can see that the combustion stroke is a simple adiabatic process.Bonus explanation: Why is diesel engine more efficient than gasoline Is it because of a higher compression? Well.. (You can also look at the above process following way: at the beginning of the expansion stroke. But not all of the “generated” energy will be transformed to mechanical form. while its molar amount is the same). Doing this.

but it doesn’t matter overall. rods. such an engine would be efficient. Efficiency and power are largely unconnected. it takes time for gas to give its energy to the piston and the . during the compression stroke the diesel spends more energy for compression than gasoline? Yes. therefore more mechanical work is extracted from heat during combustion (expansion) stroke. Imagine an engine that simply doesn’t fire the fuel – as the engine turns it neither spends nor produces energy..). in general. The higher compression ratio of the diesel really doesn’t cost the energy (in first approximation). In diesel engines the limitation is only in mechanical strength of materials (pistons. clearly it is possible to convert more heat energy to mechanical if the difference between P1. No matter what the compression ratio is. That is why diesel beats gasoline – the compression ratio in diesel engine is larger. In gasoline engine the limitation is because of self-ignition of the gasoline-air mixture. But. Why then there are no engines with compression ration 1:zillion? Sure. but during expansion it gives the same amount. crankshaft. not that much. The equation in the picture above also tells the same – the difference between volumes V1 and V2 is what gives us the mechanical work (energy). All that energy that was put into the gas during compression stroke will be recovered during expansion stroke (plus the energy that comes from fuel).) Now. a less efficient internal combustion machine can be made more powerful. cylinders.. However. How come? Well.T1 and P2. therefore the volume difference between top and bottom position is also larger. valves. What does engine power has to do with efficiency? Well. During compression it takes some.T2 is larger.time you simply have to give up and let the exhausted gas out because it would take the entire eternity for it to give all of its energy to the piston.

No no.. you can see that the compression ratio doesn’t really matter – what is important for efficiency is the ‘decompression ratio’. Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE). In gasoline engine you are limited about compression ratio. Hardenberg. What is Atkinson-cycle? This is a way to improve inherently low efficiency of a gasoline engine. the gasoline-air mixture is compressed to its maximum (actually to the same pressure level as in an ordinary gasoline engine ). Weaver.. The valve only closes when the piston is already half-way up. If you need a powerful engine. You have to expel the ‘half-used’ gas and get the fresh one in quickly. However if you had read the above text more carefully. you don’t have time to waste. Certainly. Walsh 1. At the top position. However the disadvantage is that only smaller amount of gasoline-air mixture is used in every cycle – smaller than in ordinary gasoline engine – and so the power of Atkinson cycle engine will be lower than the power of Ottocycle engine of the same volume Refrences:^ Air pollution from motor vehicles By Asif Faiz. Christopher S. it goes all the way to the bottom. But in Atkinson-cycle. But during expansion stroke. The Middle Ages of the Internal combustion Engine. in normal gasoline and diesel engines those two are the same. the compression stroke doesn’t start at the bottom point of the piston. Horst O. 1. Michael P. 1999 ..gas gives it slower and slower as it gets colder.

3.NAG ( TEXT BOOK ) SCIENCE.html P.K. DIESEL CYCLE ) .2.wolfram.com/physics/OttoCycle.NET ( OTTO CYCLE. scienceworld. 4.

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