The modification of company-manufactured vehicles, otherwise known as “Car Tuning”, has become increasingly widespread over the past few years. It has developed from industry application into being a popular hobby in which cars are modified by their owners in order to optimize performance, handling and perhaps add a personal touch. This type of activity might be mistaken by many to be reserved for racing “junkies”, but if we take a closer look, it actually proves to be quite beneficial in terms of fuel consumption and safety. Superchargers or turbochargers are known to increase engine efficiency and power, whereas advanced suspension and braking tend to drastically upgrade handling and thus safety. A carefully designed exhaust system can decrease fuel consumption by allowing the engine to breathe more easily. Body kits can also be added to the car in order to improve its aerodynamics and add a stylish touch that suits the driver’s preferences. This research report provides a feasibility assessment of Car Tuning. Most research sources about the topic have proved that car tuning can truly be an effective and rewarding application. So on paper, modifying a car seems to be unquestionably the best choice for everyone. But in reality, most people tend to buy stock market cars and leave them as they are. In our report, we intend to investigate whether modifying a car is as rewarding as it sounds or do most people know what they are doing by not engaging in this kind of activity?
Since the first combustion engine vehicle was manufactured, designers and engineers have been looking for an effective way of increasing power. Building bigger engines seemed to be the only solution for quite some time until it was realized that as engines got bigger so did their size, cost and weight. This is why nowadays engineers and car designers are using a different kind of approach which consists in modifying an already manufactured engine in order to increase its overall output. Superchargers and turbochargers are two of the most popular devices used to increase engine efficiency but describing how each of them functions in detail requires that we provide the reader with enough information on how a naturally breathing engine works. We will actually be discussing the parts of the engine that relate to airflow: Air induction system, combustion chamber and exhaust system. The cylinders constitute the core of every engine. Inside the cylinders, pistons are allowed to move up and down (see fig.1). Finally, the crankshaft “translates reciprocal linear piston motion into rotation” (Wikipedia).
Internal combustion engines are the most commonly used in modern cars. As its name indicates, the engine’s function depends on a chemical reaction (the combustion) to generate power and to propel automobiles. In order to achieve combustion, we need to have air and fuel mixed together then injected into the cylinders. Then the whole mixture should be ignited to achieve combustion. The combustion takes place inside the cylinders (this is known as the combustion chamber). Valves (allows air to pass into the cylinders but not the other way around) placed on the engine above the cylinders allow a precise volume of air and fuel to mix inside the cylinder, thus building the exact pressure inside them and obtaining an optimal combustion. There are two kind of valves: one that is called the intake (it allow the fuel and air to enter inside the cylinder) and exhaust valves (it evacuate the residue of the combustion after it has finished thus emptying the cylinder and preparing them to receive the next intake of fuel and air). The combustion inside an engine may be broken down to four cycles (known as the four-stroke combustion cycle):
The intake: here the valves fill the combustion chamber with fuel and air. The piston inside the cylinder moves down to create space and allow the different components of the combustion to mix.
The piston moves back up...
Bibliography: 1. John DeCicco, (2007, March 28). Environmental Defense automotive expert. [Online]. Retrieved from: http://www.greenoptions.com/blog/2007/03/28/environmental_defense_cost_cutting_car_tips_that_lower_your_carbon_footprint
2. Michael Brian Sullivan, (2005, September 20). Intake manifold with EGR/air mixing. [Online]. Retrieved from: http://www.google.com/patents?vid=USPAT6945237
3. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. (2007, March). Car tuning. [Online]. Retrieved from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Car_tuning
4. Ulrich Gobert, Ola Danielsson, (1992, September). Method and a device for engine braking a four stroke internal combustion engine. [Online]. Retrieved from: http://www.google.com/patents?hl=en&lr=&vid=USPAT5146890&id=GE4cAAAAEBAJ&oi=fnd&dq=how+engine+works (Google Scholar)
Fig3 from: http://static.howstuffworks.com/gif/hemi-diagram.gif
Fig2 from: Ulrich Gobert, Ola Danielsson. Method and a device for engine braking a four stroke internal combustion engine. Adapted by us to show valves and pistons.
Fig1 from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki, Adapted by us: We joined two different pictures together and inserted the legend.
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