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Superchargers And Turbochargers

Report file Session 2010-2011

Submitted By:

Sandeep Pal 0812840059 B.Tech. M.E III


A supercharger is an air compressor used for forced induction in internal combustion engines.

 Turbocharger When the driving power for the compressor comes from the exhaust gas turbine it is called a turbo supercharger or simply turbo charger.

Need for supercharger.

The need for some mechanical attachment to be used for increasing the o/p of regular combustion engines was felt due to following reasons.

 Heat loss.  Low weight to power ratio.  Altitude Effect.

Heat loss.
A major portion of the heat generated in the combustion chamber is lost to the environment in exhaust gases and through conduction and convection. This flue energy varies from 25-40% of the heat generated in the combustion chamber. Variation depends on the various models available.

y Low Weight To Power Ratio:

The work o/p of the general combustion engines was low as per their gross weight and scope was visible to used the idle potentials of a given engines without making structural changes.

y Altitude effect: This was one of the prominent reasons for the development of the superchargers. In 1930s when aviation sector was in its nascent stage rotary IC engines were used to propel the aircrafts. It was observed that o/p of the IC engines fell considerably due to lesser

availability of oxygen in the upper reaches of the atmosphere. This hampered aircrafts load carrying capacity and the ability to reach very high altitudes. This problem was sorted out by the application of the superchargers. One of the prime examples of the use of supercharged engines in aircraft was P4 thunderbolt that remained the mainstay of German air force in II world war.

y History. y By the late 1800s, German engineer called Krigar invented an air pump that utilized twin rotating shafts that compressed air. y In 1860 patented the design for an air mover was patented for use in blast furnaces y The combination of the pair of inventions resulted in a third with the first functional supercharger attributed to German engineer Gottlieb Daimler supercharged an internal combustion engine in 1885. y And first supercharged race car was built by Lee Chadwick of Pottstown, Pennsylvania in 1908, which, it was reported, reached a speed of 100 mph (160 km/h).

A supercharger is an air compressor used for forced induction in internal combustion engines.

It is the process of increasing the mass flow rate per cycle in an IC engine, thus increasing the availability of oxygen for better combustion of fuel. Greater amount of oxygen also allows feed greater amount of fuel per cycle.

Types of supercharger..
Positive Displacement Provides a constant compression with increasing RPM 1. Reciprocating Compressor. 2. Lysholm compressor. 3. Roots Type compressor.

Dynamic Displacement Rate of compression increases with increase in RPM 1. Centrifugal Compressor. 2. Multi Axial.

 Reciprocating Compressor
This is a positive displacement reciprocating compressor. The size of the compressor is decided by the volume of the air supplied. If we need to increase the volume of the pumped air well have to increase the number of pistons or the volume of cylinder.

Isentropic efficiency of this type of compressor is 75-80%.


Speed is the limiting factor as the compressor has reciprocating parts and is operational up to 4000rpm only.


 Lysholm Compressor
Positive displacement rotary supercharger. The air is admitted at one end and trapped b/w the helical rotors and the casing. The screw action of the rotors displaces the air axially. The compression is produced internally. Disadvantage: Disadvantage of this compressor model is its mechanical complexity.


Centrifugal Compressor

The air enters the hub of the impeller and is turned 90 degrees by the radial vanes. A high velocity is imparted to the air due to centrifugal action. This high velocity air from the tip of the radial vanes is passed to a diffuser where the pressure is further raised and the supplied to the engine.


Efficiency Aspects
 Isentropic efficiency 70-80%.  Very high pressure can be obtained at pressure ratio 2:1.  Mechanical efficiency of about 90-95%.  Operated at speeds of 15000- 30000rpm.

Occurrence of surge if the compressor is working near surge limit any reduction in flow will reduce compressor efficiency. This in turn reduces pressure ratio ,and hence further reduces air flow to abnormal limits.


Roots type Supercharger

It is named for the brothers Philander and Francis Marion Roots who first patented the basic design in 1860 as an air pump for use in blast furnaces and other industrial applications. In 1900, Gottlieb Daimler included a Roots-style supercharger in a patented engine design, making the Roots-type supercharger the oldest of the various designs now available.



Roots blower is a positive displacement lobe pump.

 Operates by pumping fluids with a pair of meshing lobes.  Fluid is trapped in pockets surrounding the lobes and carried from the intake side to the exhaust.  It is frequently used as supercharger in engines, where it is driven directly from the engine's crankshaft via a belt or by spur gears.



 Possibility of knock and detonation increases.  Due to increased flame rate petrol engines have to employ lower compression ratios.  Elevated heat losses due to lower compression ratio which leads to reduced thermal efficiency.  Greater fuel consumption rate.

CI Engine:
 Quieter, better & smoother combustion of fuel.  Combustion does not get sensitive to fuel ratio.  Mechanical and thermal loading increases but overall power but gets compensated by overall power o/p.  Facilitates use of lean air fuel ratio which increases efficiency.  Low A/F ratio and high expansion ratio leads to lower exhausts.


Effects of supercharging
 Power out put
Increases as work O/P Per cycle is increased. Better and complete comb of fuel due to better scavenging.

 Mechanical Efficiency:
Due to increased pressure large bearings and heavier Components are needed. Increase in frictional forces.

 Fuel Efficiency:
Otto engines use rich mixtures whereas diesel engines use lean mix. Otto engines have higher consumption in super charging. specific fuel

Effects of supercharging are very wide and varying in CI and SI engines


Turbo charging

When the driving power for the compressor comes from the exhaust gas turbine it is called a turbo supercharger or simply turbo charger.

Types Of Turbocharging

 Constant Pressure Turbocharger.  Pulse Turbocharging.  Pulse Converter Turbocharging.


 Constant Pressure Turbocharging

 Exhaust of all the cylinders is discharged into a common manifold.  Pressure is higher than the atmospheric pressure.  Gasses expand to a constant pressure condition and pass to the turbine.

 Recovery of exhaust gases is very efficient at high compression ratio.  Efficiency of the turbine is high due to constant temp conditions.  Exhaust piping is simple.  Engine speed is not limited by pressure waves in exhaust.

 Scavenging becomes problematic when the exhaust pressure fluctuates.  Response to loading is constant.  At part load efficiency of the turbine reduces due to partial admission.


Pulse Turbocharging

 The blow-down energy is converted into pulse as soon as exhaust valve open.  Pulses led to the turbine through the shortest & narrowest path.  Expansion done wholly at the turbine.

 Recovery of exhaust blow down energy is efficient.  Rapid acceleration and quick response to throttle.  Compact Size due to small pipe fittings.  Better scavenging.

 Recovery of energy is poor due to throttle losses.  Complicated exhaust arrangement.  If waves take too long to travel then scavenging is complicated.


Pulse converter
 Different branches of the exhaust manifold are connected together in a venturi junction called the pulse converter.  Pulse system provides the max utilization of the effluent energy.  Turbine runs at full admission.


Comparative Study
 superchargers may absorb as much as a third of the total crankshaft power of the engine  Thermal efficiency & power O/P of supercharger is lower then turbocharger.  mechanically-driven supercharger has better throttle response


y Turbocharger as driven by exhaust is independent of the engine power. y Efficiency is higher than supercharger. y Thermal spool is the main drawback.