Atmospheric engine: what is it
Atmospheric engine is an internal combustion engine of the classical type, in which air, comes through the intake system and takes part in the process of creating the fuel mixture in each cylinder. As a result, the created fuel mixture ignites, creates energy and drives the working elements of the motor.
Types of Atmospheric Engines
Atmospheric engines are divided into three main groups of engines:
- gasoline engines – these have gained the most popularity in the automotive industry;
- gas engines – they are not widespread in industrial scales, are used as an additional element in tandem with the gasoline engine
- Diesel motors – they do not have serious drawbacks, but are inferior in popularity to gasoline motors in automobile industry.
Atmospheric engines can be classified into types according to the method of fuel supply. According to this parameter, ICE is divided into two types: injector and carburetor.
What is the difference between an atmospheric engine and a turbocharged engine
These two types of engines are the most popular in the passenger car industry. At the same time, they have significant differences between them.
The main differences between the atmospheric and turbocharged engine touched the following indicators: the principle of operation, volume and power, duration of operation, fuel quality and lubricants. Let’s analyze these parameters in comparison.
The turbocharged engine differs by the turbocharging system available. It consists of an intercooler, turbocharger, turbine. As a result, more air enters the cylinders of the engine than the engine of an atmospheric engine. Therefore, the combustion process of the air-fuel mixture, saturated with air, goes more efficiently – there is more energy, which starts the engine and drives the car.
Studies have shown that to achieve 125 horsepower, the volume of an atmospheric and turbocharged motor will be different. In particular, for a turbocharged engine the volume of 1 liter will be enough, and for an atmospheric engine this indicator will be 1.6 liters.
With 125 horsepower, the turbocharged engine will have slightly lower fuel consumption and better dynamics. Also to the advantage of the turbocharged engine should include the greater weight of the atmospheric engine and its inability to maintain maximum power while driving in mountainous terrain, characterized by thin air.
The atmospheric engine is superior to its counterpart in terms of durability. The turbocharged motor wears out faster. At the same time, the maximum distance that such engine is able to cover without overhaul is 150,000 kilometers. And the atmospheric engine is able to overcome without overhaul within 300-500 thousand kilometers.
Ideally, for the smooth functioning of both types of engines need the highest quality fuel and lubricants. However, the atmospheric engine, in comparison with the turbocharged engine, is less fastidious to their quality. And also its repair will be cheaper.
As a result of the comparative analysis appears the conclusion that:
- A turbocharged engine is better than an atmospheric engine in terms of the amount of energy created, lower fuel consumption (with equal starting characteristics) and the volume required to achieve maximum power;
- the atmospheric engine is better than its counterpart on the duration of operation and less fastidiousness to the quality of fuel and lubricants.
Pros and cons of the atmospheric engine
The atmospheric engine has a lot of advantages and a few disadvantages. The advantages of the engine include:
- unpretentiousness of maintenance – for engine maintenance you can use not the highest quality fuels and lubricants, the main thing is that they fit the engine in its composition;
- Many times repair – an atmospheric engine can withstand a large number of minor repairs, while the owner of the car can perform them independently (at home), without the need to visit the service station;
- durability – this type is designed for long-term operation (several hundred thousand kilometers);
- preservation of power level – the key advantage of the product, which is expressed in preservation of power at small revolutions of the engine, reaction to the minimum pressing of the accelerator pedal, transition from low to high revolutions for a short time interval.
In addition to the positive aspects, this type of motor also has negative aspects. These include:
The principle of operation, advantages and disadvantages of the atmospheric engine
Various types of internal combustion engines (ICE) are used in the modern automotive industry. With such an assortment of power units that differ from each other structurally (by number of cylinders, method of formation of the working mixture, cooling principle, type of fuel used and other parameters) it is difficult for the unsophisticated motorist not to get confused when choosing a vehicle. The evolution of internal combustion engines, which drive the car, due to innovations in automotive engineering has provided the possibility of acceleration of modern cars to a high speed in a compact size of the unit.
Today the range of engines includes a variety of models adapted to the needs of any consumer. Even people who are far from understanding of the “inner world” of the car know about the division of power units into diesel, gasoline and gas engines. But the classification does not end there, and not always motorists, more deeply educated in the structure of mechanisms and systems of the car, faced with the concept of an atmospheric engine, understand what it really means. Let’s explain what the atmospheric engine means, what principle it works on and what advantages and disadvantages it has.
Unlike an internal combustion engine with a supercharger, which uses a device forced injection of air masses to create a fuel-air mixture (compressor, turbine, intercooler), the “atmospheric” lets air in due to the reduced pressure in the injector or carburetor. That is, the air flow from the atmosphere is taken in a natural way, which is actually what the name says. It is the most ordinary motor, designed more than a century ago and installed on the first cars that came off the assembly line. Atmospheric engine has not lost its relevance and today, having already become a classic, they complete the car for more than a decade known giants of the automobile industry.
Operating principle of the atmospheric engine
Any internal combustion engine functions by the ignition of fuel in the cylinders, which is provided by oxygen. The process of combustion of the mixture created in the necessary proportions by the carburetor or injector generates energy, which drives the mechanisms of the car engine. In the case of a gasoline engine, the air-fuel mixture is a proportion of gasoline and oxygen at a ratio of 1:14. In order to understand in more detail what an atmospheric engine in a car is, and to understand how exactly it performs its functions, we will consider the process of air supply step by step. To begin with, let’s define the fuel mixture supply devices used:
- Carburetor. The device is a simple design, which provides the process of mixing fuel with air mechanically, with the adjustment of the supply involves careful adjustment. The carburetor consists of a float chamber and an air chamber connected by an atomizer tube. The gas pump supplies fuel to the float chamber, the needle filter and the float ensure the fuel supply. The mixing chamber has a diffuser, atomizer and throttle valve. The movement of the pistons causes a vacuum, through which air and gasoline are sucked in, enabling the engine to function. The mixture is fed regardless of the engine operating mode, resulting in high fuel consumption and high exhaust emissions.
- Injector (injector). The fuel control system in this case is more advanced. The process is controlled by an electronic system (microcontroller), which controls the calculation of fuel portions by analyzing the readings from the car sensors. The fuel supply does not depend on the mode of the engine, as in the case of the carburetor, and is performed automatically by means of injectors, they in turn have different connection options: single point (monopump), multi-point (distributed) and direct (direct injection). The pressure stability is ensured by a special valve, which discharges the excess fuel. As a result the fuel is available in precisely metered quantities, resulting in reduced fuel consumption, lower emissions and high engine output. These factors have contributed to the great popularity of engines with injectors and today they have virtually superseded carbureted engines from the market.
The principle of the atmospheric engine:
- The intake of air flow from the atmosphere by the moving pistons;
- creation of an air-fuel mixture by mixing oxygen with fuel;
- feeding of the mixture into the combustion chamber;
- release of energy through ignition;
- pressure on the piston;
- transfer of rotation to the crankshaft.
In this way, the vehicle is propelled, the continuity of which is ensured by a stable pressure in the cylinders and a regular supply of fuel. The air pressure transmitted to the engine is equal to one atmosphere. The definition of atmospheric engines refers to both gasoline and diesel models, in which there is atmospheric pressure in the combustion chamber when the mixture is ignited. Despite the peculiarities of the designs and the difference in the type of fuel used, the units are based on the same principle of operation. Special devices for forcing air flows are absent in any variant of the atmospheric engine.
Advantages and disadvantages of the atmospheric engine
Modern cars are equipped with different units, and with the emergence of models equipped with turbocharger, which differ from the usual “atmospheric” high power at low fuel consumption and small volumes, many automakers prefer them. Creation of environmentally friendly models is currently in trend, but there are pitfalls. Complication of the design leads to short life and complexity of repair work, while the main thing that distinguishes the atmospheric engine is reliability. For this reason there are still adherents of classics. In addition, for so many years of evolution of the internal combustion engine classic versions of the motors have been significantly improved.
The structural differences of the motor, equipped with a turbine in the presence of a turbocharger or a mechanical compressor, forcing air flows under high pressure (1.5 to 3 atmospheres). Thus, turbo engines are able to burn more fuel, producing more power and demonstrating better dynamics than the atmospheric engines of the same volume. In this case, after 100 – 150 thousand km. mileage joy of high performance can fade due to the need for repair, which itself can hardly be performed. “Atmospheric”, which features a simple design, you can fix yourself, not spending a lot of money on the procedure. It is easier to operate an atmospheric-type engine. Immediately after stopping traffic is not recommended to stop the engine, it should idle for a while to stabilize the pressure.
Advantages of Atmospheric ICE
“Atmospheric” have a number of advantages, thanks to which they are still chosen by most motorists:
- high degree of reliability, durability;
- simple design, providing ease of maintenance and small costs, as well as the ability to fix the problem with their own hands;
- low consumption of engine oil and long lifetime of the oil filter (in the case of a turbocharged engine, twice as much oil is consumed);
- unpretentiousness to fuel quality: the engine can perfectly cope with low-quality fuel, what many gas stations are guilty of.
Atmospheric engine disadvantages
The engine of the atmospheric type is not devoid of disadvantages, including:
- high weight of the construction;
- low power compared to the motor of the same volume, equipped with a turbine;
- torque values and acceleration are lower than those of a supercharged engine
- Inability to reach rated power when driving on mountainous terrain where thin air can be observed.
Feeding by means of natural airflow intake does not allow optimizing the proportions of fuel and oxygen in all modes of operation. That is, at low speeds there is an inability to take in the right amount of oxygen, and at high speeds there is an obstruction of air flow by the air passage section and the air filter. The disadvantages do not make atmospheric engines less rational to use than supercharged units, so they do not lose their popularity, despite the release of innovations in the field of automotive engineering.
Examples of vehicles with strong atmospheric engines
Constant improvement of car characteristics from the well-known leaders of car production ensures the demand for examples with “atmospheric” engines on the car market. Among the powerful models, which are equipped with engines of the atmospheric type, it is possible to distinguish the following:
- Ferrari GTC4Lusso (one version of the car is equipped with an atmospheric6.3-liter V12 engine with 690 hp and 697 Nm of torque);
- Porsche 918 Spyder with a strong 608 hp atmospheric engine. V8;
- Porsche 911 GT3 RS with a 4-liter 520 hp atmospheric engine;
- Mercedes C63 FMG Edition 507 with 507 hp engine;
- Chevrolet Corvette C7 Stingray (“atmospheric” V8 engine with a capacity of 2 liters).
Among the representatives of cars with a powerful atmospheric power unit, there are many models, the list of which can be continued. Famous brands such as Ferrari, Lamborghini, Porsche, Mercedes, Audi, Chevrolet, BMW and others install atmospheric engines on many of their cars. Models come in a variety of variations and have both gasoline and diesel engines.
The atmospheric engine runs predictably, which for many motorists is a definite advantage. Decide for yourself which of the variants is more suitable, based on your own preferences. If reliability, ease of operation and service are priority, it is better to choose an atmospheric motor, but if the indicators of dynamics are in the first place, the choice is obvious. By the way, the efforts of skilled tuners, practicing tuning, turbines are also installed on the atmospheric engines. To do it is not easy and requires special skills, but in practice it is quite applicable. Since the device is not molded to the engine at random, calculations of the speed and volume of incoming air are assumed. On your own, it is better not to perform such work, because only virtuosos of their craft can successfully cope with the task.