The Six Stroke Engine Essay

637 words - 3 pages

The advent of the internal combustion engine mobilized the world. Since its invention in the early 1800s, cars, trucks, airplanes, even boats now harness the power of ignited fuel to travel infinitely faster than ever previously thought possible. However the most commonly used engine type, the four-stroke, is not without its problems. The four stroke engine runs hot by nature, and requires a cooling system. The added weight from a radiator hurts fuel efficiency, and therefore costs more money. The four-stroke is also responsible in large part for global warming due to its high carbon monoxide emissions. These problems seem unavoidable, but modern engineers have solved them both in the form of the six stroke engine. Although not yet in every day application, there are several different kinds of six-stroke prototypes sporting impressive test results. The most promising of these designs however, appears to be Bruce Crower’s design which uses steam to generate a second power stroke.Normally after the power stroke in a normal four-stroke cycle the immense heat from the explosion is dealt with by a radiator. This isn’t only inefficient because of the excess weight of a cooling system, but since up to 70% of the energy created by the motor is heat energy, it’s also counter-productive. Bruce Crower believes the key to a more efficient engine is to harness the wasted heat energy and convert it to extra kinetic energy. His six-stroke design does this by injecting water directly into the cylinder immediately after the exhaust valve closes on the fourth stroke. The water almost instantaneously vaporizes and expands –up to 1600% its liquid mass–, slamming the piston downward for another power stroke. On the sixth stroke the rising piston expels the steam, and the cycle repeats. The water is not only used to create a second power stroke however, but it also cools the cylinder head, eliminating the need for an external cooling system. That means far...

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