Tuesday, October 11, 2011

New technology turns petrol engines into low compression diesel!

It has been a sudden realisation - the world is running out of oil and the laws of supply and demand are set to make petrol prohibitively expensive in the very near future. Sonex Research has a new combustion technology that offers significantly better fuel consumption and greatly reduced emissions. The Sonex GDI Combustion System uses pistons modified to carry a chemical charge that initiates combustion from one cycle to the next, thus eliminating the need for spark plugs. High compression, typical of diesel engines, is no longer needed to make the fuel ignite; in fact, the chemistry causing this auto ignition process exists only at lower compression ratios. Thus, a low compression engine, typically used for burning gasoline, can be designed to burn either a lighter alcohol fuel like ethanol, or a heavier fuel like (bio)diesel when equipped with Sonex pistons, common rail direct injection system and associated electronic control system to control injection pressure and timing. The technology could well be first deployed powering UAVs for the military in Iraq.

of Maryland, USA, believes much better fuel efficiency will be achievable when the Sonex Controlled Auto Ignition (SCAI) system is fully developed for Gasoline Direct Injected (GDI) engines using no spark ignition or throttle. The Sonex GDI Combustion System could improve fuel mileage by at least 25%. Dr. Andrew Pouring, a former chairman of the Dept. of Aerospace Engineering at the US Naval Academy, in his research found that pistons can be modified to carry a chemical charge that initiates combustion from one cycle to the next, thus eliminating the need for spark plugs. High compression, typical of diesel engines, is no longer needed to make the fuel ignite; in fact, the chemistry causing this auto ignition process exists only at lower compression ratios.

Thus, a low compression engine, typically used for burning gasoline, can be designed to burn either a lighter alcohol fuel like ethanol, or a heavier fuel like (bio)diesel when equipped with Sonex pistons, common rail direct injection system and associated electronic control system to control injection pressure and timing.

The piston head is designed with micro-chambers (MC) containing small connecting holes to the main combustion bowl in the piston. The initial combustion is brought about by the use of glow plugs which are turned off after starting. When fuel is directly injected into the engine at a precise moment, the SCAI design allows a small portion of the fuel to enter the MC.

This allows a slow chemical reaction in the MC which continues into the next compression cycle, thus providing the “chemical spark” for the next combustion. In a low compression engine, a more complete combustion of the fuel occurs at a lower temperature. As a result, soot and toxic emissions get reduced by over 80%. The turbulence of high-speed airflows in the connecting passages and the MC chemical reactions prevent these chambers from ever becoming clogged. A heavier fuel with more energy in it can now run in a lightweight engine more efficiently and with cleaner exhaust. Consequently, Sonex brings about the best of both worlds.

The main customer of SCAI has been DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). Currently, under their DARPA contract, Sonex Research is continuing development of a multi-cylinder, high power output, lightweight piston engine to comply with a DoD policy directive that mandates heavy fuel for all engines; this engine has already demonstrated a 25% reduction in fuel consumption compared to its performance on gasoline.

Gasoline engines are typically 25% to 30% lighter than diesel engines. Gasoline engine designs with the SCAI technology that can burn kerosene-based heavy fuels (JP5/8) would address DoD performance, logistics, and safety requirements.

So why hasn’t the automotive industry snatched up this technology? It’s the “not invented here mentality” according to Dr. Pouring. “If the automaker hasn’t invented the technology in its own house, the automaker is highly reluctant to use it, moreover, the automaker requires full compliance with emissions regulations before even taking a look. This is a daunting task.”

However, circumstances might make this industry reconsider. Fuel efficiency improvement is addressed in the Energy Bill signed into law in August in the USA. Section 773 states: “..the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) shall initiate a one-year study and report to Congress of the feasibility and effects of reducing by model year 2014, by a significant percentage, the amount of fuel consumed by automobiles.”

Sonex Research seeks to be at the forefront of this initiative by providing this NHTSA study with compelling data on how its technology could cost-effectively improve fuel mileage 25% to 30% while reducing exhaust emissions. Once the US Congress is made aware that much higher standards are achievable, these standards could become mandated as federal law. In the meantime, consumers can rightfully demand better engines, knowing the Sonex technology is available.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Transonic's fuel injection system

Transonic's fuel injection system different from a direct injection is that it uses supercritical fluids and requires no spark to ignite the fuel

( -- The best hybrid cars of today can only deliver about 48 miles per gallon. By using this newly developed fuel injection system a test vehicle was measured at achieving 64 miles per gallon in highway driving. This is approximately a 50% increase in fuel efficiency in a gasoline engine.

Electrochlorination - Specialise in Electro Chlorination Feed from Sea

The fuel injection system was developed by a startup company Transonic Combustion and their goal is to increase fuel efficiency of existing gasoline engines. The cost for this ultra-efficient system would be as much as high-end fuel injection systems currently on the market today.

By heating and pressurizing gasoline before injecting it into the combustion chamber places it into a supercritical state that allows for very fast and clean combustion. This in turn decreases the amount of fuel needed to run the vehicle. The gasoline is also treated with a catalyst to further enhance combustion.

What makes Transonic's fuel injection system different from a direct injection is that it uses supercritical fluids and requires no spark to ignite the fuel. The supercritical fluid mixes quickly with air when it's injected into the cylinder. The heat and pressure, in the cylinder, alone is enough to cause the fuel to combust without a spark.

Ignition timing happens just when the piston reaches the optimal point, so that the maximum amount of energy is converted into mechanical movement of the engine.

Proprietary software has also been developed by Transonic Combustion that allows the system to adjust the fuel injection precisely depending on engine load.

Transonic Combustion is currently testing their new fuel injection system with three automakers. One key concern is the life of the engine when it’s subject to high pressures and temperatures. The company plans to manufacture the system themselves and not license the technology. Transonic Combustion plans to build its first factory in 2013, and place the technology into production cars by 2014

What Is TSCiTM Technology
TSCiTM is a revolutionary combustion system enabled by injecting supercritical fuel directly into the combustion chamber. Direct injection of fuel in the supercritical state enables significant fuel efficiency improvements to be achieved. For example, supercritical injection enables cost-effective compression ignition of gasoline in engines with a conventional architecture. This is described as “Injection Ignition”, and it results in efficiencies that are equal to or better than today’s Diesel engines. TSCi™ also enables new combustion strategies to help OEM’s achieve future reductions in emissions levels. So far, a number of top automotive and engine manufacturers have engaged Transonic and are advancing their powertrain plans to incorporate TSCiTM technology.


Transonic Combustion Technology - TSCiTM Fuel Injection
Utilizing supercritical fuel injection to achieve injection-ignition, the TSCiTM combustion system achieves high thermal and combustion efficiency when operating with high compression ratio gasoline engines.

[ Learn More ]

The Fundamental Problem
The spark ignited (SI) gasoline engine is limited in performance and fuel efficiency by three fundamental factors: 1) throttling which results in pumping losses as well as reduced cycle pressures and temperatures; 2) inherently slow heat release curve as a result of a long delay period and a modest burn rate; resulting in increased heat losses and low cycle efficiency; 3) compression ratio limited by fuel quality.

[ Learn More ]
Benefits of TSCiTM Technology
The characteristics of TSCiTM address all of the issues identified as limiting the efficiency of the gasoline engine; it is capable of operating over a wide range of air/fuel ratios and so does not require a throttle for load control. TSCiTM has inherently short combustion delay and a fast combustion that combine in heat release phasing for optimal efficiency. TSCiTM can be operated at an optimal compression ratio since it is not dependent on high octane gasoline.

Why TSCiTM Technology


Powertrain technologies have expanded to include not only direct propulsion, but also parallel and series hybrids, and plug-in electrics with range-extending internal combustion driven generators. Internal combustion is at the core of all of these, and will continue to be the prime powertrain technology well into the foreseeable future. From a refinery output standpoint, it is impractical to move our entire vehicle fleet to Diesel fuel. Therefore, major efficiency gains need to occur with gasoline fueled engines to meet the future’s ever more stringent fuel economy and emissions requirements. TSCiTM addresses the problem of spark ignited gasoline internal combustion being less efficient than compression ignition of Diesel.

Transonic Combustion, based in Camarillo, CA, has developed a gasoline fuel injection system that can improve the efficiency of gasoline engines by 50 to 75 percent, beating the fuel economy of hybrid vehicles. A test vehicle the size and weight of a Toyota Prius (but without hybrid propulsion) showed 64 miles per gallon for highway driving. The company says the system can work with existing engines, and costs about as much as existing high-end fuel injection.

Transonic Combustion uses supercritical-state fuel to radically shift the technological benefits of the automotive internal combustion engine This technology was featured at the ARPA-E Innovation summit and has DOE funding.

TSCi Fuel Injection achieves lean combustion and super efficiency by running gasoline, diesel, and advanced bio-renewable fuels on modern diesel engine architectures. Supercritical fluids have unusual physical properties that Transonic is harnessing for internal combustion engine efficiency. Supercritical fuel injection facilitates short ignition delay and fast combustion, precisely controls the combustion that minimizes crevice burn and partial combustion near the cylinder walls, and prevents droplet diffusion burn. Our engine control software facilitates extremely fast combustion, enabled by advanced microprocessing technology. Our injection system can also be supplemented by advanced thermal management, exhaust gas recovery, electronic valves, and advanced combustion chamber geometries.

Fuel efficiency improvements enabled by advanced combustion technologies of 50% or more for automotive engines (relative to spark-ignition engines dominating the road today in the U.S.) and 25% or more for heavy-duty truck engines (relative to today’s diesel truck engines) are possible in the next 10 to 15 years

Our fuel system efficiently supports engine operation over the full range of conditions – from stoichiometric air-to-fuel ratios at full power to lean 80:1 air-to-fuel ratios at cruise, with engine-out NOx at just 50% of comparable standard engines. Our real-time programmable control of combustion heat release results in dramatically increased efficiency.

Along with operating on gasoline, our technology can efficiently utilize fuels based on their chemical heat capacity independent of octane or cetane ratings. Thus, economical, highly functional mixtures of renewable plant products can be utilized which are not practical in either conventional spark or compression ignition engines. In dynamometer testing on current engine architectures, our technology has successfully run on gasoline, diesel, biodiesel, heptane, ethanol, and vegetable oil. Recently our engineers achieved seamless operation alternating between several different fuels on one of our customer’s engines in our Camarillo test facilities.

Supercritical Fuel Injection

Automotive Engineering International Feature - Supercritical fuel injection and combustion

Recent work by Mike Cheiky, a physicist and serial inventor/entrepreneur, is focusing on raising not only the fuel mixture’s pressure but also its temperature.

Cheiky's aim, in fact, is to generate a little-known, intermediate state of matter—a so-called supercritical (SC) fluid—which he and his co-workers at Camarillo, CA-based Transonic Combustion believe could markedly increase the fuel efficiency of next-generation power plants while reducing their exhaust emissions.

Transonic’s proprietary TSCi fuel-injection systems do not produce fuel droplets as conventional fuel delivery units do, according to Mike Rocke, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development. The supercritical condition of the fuel injected into a cylinder by a TSCi system means that the fuel mixes rapidly with the intake air which enables better control of the location and timing of the combustion process.

The novel SC injection systems, which Rocke calls “almost drop-in” units, include “a GDI-type,” common-rail system that incorporates a metal-oxide catalyst that breaks fuel molecules down into simpler hydrocarbon chains, and a precision, high-speed (piezoelectric) injector whose resistance-heated pin places the fuel in a supercritical state as it enters the cylinder.

Company engineers have doubled the fuel efficiency numbers in dynamometer tests of gas engines fitted with the company’s prototype SC fuel-injection systems, Rocke said. A modified gasoline engine installed in a 3200-lb (1451-kg) test vehicle, for example, is getting 98 mpg (41.6 km/L) when running at a steady 50 mph (80 km/h) in the lab.

The 48-employee firm is finalizing a development engine for a test fleet of from 10 to 100 vehicles, while trying to find a partner with whom to manufacture and market TSCi systems by 2014.

“A supercritical fluid is basically a fourth state of matter that’s part way between a gas and liquid,” said Michael Frick, Vice President for Engineering. A substance goes supercritical when it is heated beyond a certain thermodynamic critical point so that it refuses to liquefy no matter how much pressure is applied.

SC fluids have unique properties. For a start, their density is midway between those of a liquid and gas, about half to 60% that of the liquid. On the other hand, they also feature the molecular diffusion rates of a gas and so can dissolve substances that are usually tough to place in solution.

To minimize friction losses, the Transonic engineers have steadily reduced the compression of their test engines to between 20:1 and 16:1, with the possibility of 13:1 for gasoline engines.


Thus far 3 patents (#7444230, #7546826, #7657363) have been issued to Transonic from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office related to our technology, with another 14 patents pending.

Patent 7444230 - Fuel injector having algorithm controlled look-ahead timing for injector

The present invention provides an injector-ignition fuel injection system for an internal combustion engine, comprising an ECU controlling a heated catalyzed fuel injector for heating and catalyzing a next fuel charge, wherein the ECU uses a one firing cycle look-ahead algorithm for controlling...

This Fuel-Injection System Might Increase Fuel Efficiency By Up To 50%
The most fuel efficient hybrid for sale in the US gets 51 MPG, but a startup called Transonic Combustion claims they can improve that. They claim their fuel-injection system will get 64 MPG.

Transonic's fuel-injection system is supposedly better because it "uses supercritical fluids and requires no spark to ignite the fuel. The supercritical fluid is mixed with air before injected into the cylinder. The heat and pressure, in the cylinder, alone is enough to cause the fuel to combust without a spark." That spark-free ignition process along with some proprietary software makes this particular fuel-injection system different from direct injection systems and supposedly helps make it so ultra-efficient.

Transonic says that they hope to place the technology in production cars by 2014, but I really just want to see the data from their initial test, because this is an almost bold claim for mainstream electric hybrids.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

causing the first rotor to act like a super charger / turbo charger, compressing the air

General Motors Co. is considering a rotary engine for the second generation Chevrolet Volt. In an interview with Inside Line, Karl Stracke, GM's vice president of global engineering, said that the range-extending gasoline engine in the next-gen Volt will be smaller than the 71hp 1.4-liter inline four-cylinder in the 2011 Volt. Stracke shared about the company‚ strategy to pick a rotary engine or a two-cylinder (gas) engine producing 15-18 kW (20-24 hp. He explained that rotary may have a higher fuel consumption but that its round packaging is an advantage. He said that a single-rotor engine could be enough. He also cited that the Mazda RX-8 is the only current-production rotary-engined car and it uses the two-rotor Renesis engine. Of course, the Volt has needs that are quite different from the RX-8. Stracke noted that with the higher rpm of a rotary, there has to be an NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) solution. He also revealed that for the next generation of GM hybrids, a diesel engine is being considered. The issue with this is that diesel has a higher materials cost but then consumers would have lower fuel costs.

If GM hopes to reach the same level of mainstream success with the Volt as Toyota has accomplished with its Prius hybrid, it's extremely important to cut costs in future generations. Stracke says the cost of the 2011 Volt's battery pack is "roughly $10,000" and that GM is "working aggressively to get that cost down 50 percent" for the next Volt.

"The future of the automobile has never been as interesting as it is right now," said Stracke. "Big question is, what new propulsion system will come next?"

Moller invents compound rotary engine, in which the two rotors act in series instead of parallel, causing the first rotor to act like a super charger / turbo charger, compressing the air while being pushed by exhaust gases:!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Major increase in efficiency, cooler exhaust, and no need for a catalytic converter.

According to a recent interview with Karl Stracke, the new VP of Global Vehicle Engineering, GM is looking at the current drivetrain choice for the Volt much more critically. The intent of the Volt is to complete with the Toyota Prius but, with a battery pack that costs close $10,000 to replace, it won't be able to do so successfully. Especially considering that even after the $7,500 tax credit, the effective price of the Volt is close to the $30,000 mark.

GM's answer to this is swapping out the current 1.4 liter internal combustion engine with a smaller rotary powerplant. The choice was made because rotary engines are well known for making more power by volume than traditional internal combustion engines. Even though they are also known for using more fuel, reducing the displacement should be able to offset this. The use of a single rotor has also been discussed.

Another possibility that is apparently being tossed around by GM's Engineers is making use of a two cylinder petroleum engine in place of the inline-4. GM has tested such a motor already, and was able to coax up to 25 horsepower out of the little guy.

The use of a diesel engine was also brought up, but this would increase the overall cost of the drivetrain. That isn't to say it will never happen, but for the next generation of the Volt it is highly unlikely.

As of now, General Motors is still planning on having the first generation Volts onto the showroom floors by the end of this year. However, with the second generation already in the works and looking to be better than the first, the initial round of sales may suffer just a bit.

Friday, August 12, 2011


Second-Generation Chevrolet Volt Could Use Rotary Engine !!!!!!!
New range-extending engines are already being tested for the second-generation Chevrolet Volt. Among them, two-cylinder and rotary power plants

The Chevrolet Aerovette is a car created by the Chevrolet division of General Motors, beginning life as Experimental Project 882 (XP-882). It has a mid-engine configuration using a transverse mounting of its V-8 engine. Zora Arkus- Duntov's engineers originally built two XP-882s during 1969, but John DeLorean, Chevrolet's general manager, canceled the program because it was impractical and costly. But when Ford announced plans to sell the DeTomaso Pantera through Lincoln-Mercury dealers, DeLorean ordered one XP-882 cleaned up for display at the 1970 New York Auto Show.

In 1972, DeLorean authorized further work on the XP-882 chassis and gave it a new project code, XP-895. A near-identical body in aluminum alloy that resembled the XP-895 was constructed, and became the "Reynolds Aluminum Car." Two of the Chevrolet Vega 2-rotor engines were joined together as a 4-rotor, 420 horsepower (310 kW) engine, which was used to power XP-895. The XP-895 was first shown in late 1973. Another Corvette concept, XP-897GT, also appeared in 1973, which used a 2-rotor engine. However, with the energy crisis of the time, GM scrapped its rotary development work and all plans for a Wankel-powered car. The XP-897GT 2-rotor Concept was sold to Tom Falconer and fitted with a Mazda 13B rotary engine in 1997.

In 1976, the 4-rotor engine was replaced by a 400 cu in (6,600 cc) Chevy V-8, and the concept car was named Aerovette and approved for production for 1980. The Aerovette featured double folding gullwing doors. The production car would use a 350 cu in (5,700 cc) V-8, and priced between $15000-$18000. However, after chief supporters Duntov, Bill Mitchell, and Ed Cole had retired from General Motors, David R. McLellan decided that a front/mid-engine car would be more economical to build and would have better performance, and canceled Aerovette program. Contemporary import mid engine cars had poor sales in the United States compared to the Datsun 240Z, which ultimately determined the Aerovette's fate, terminating production plans.

Chevrolet vega 1974 by rotor engine

Chevrolet Vega
1972 Chevrolet Vega GT Hatchback Coupe
Manufacturer Chevrolet Division
of General Motors
Also called Vega 2300
Production 1970–1977
Model years 1971–1977
Assembly Lordstown Assembly,
Lordstown, Ohio, United States
Sainte-Thérèse Assembly-
Quebec, Canada
Successor Chevrolet Monza
Class Subcompact
Body style 2-door notchback sedan
2-door hatchback coupe
2- door wagon
2- door panel delivery
Layout FR layout
Platform GM H platform (RWD)
Engine 140 cu in (2.3 L) OHC 1bbl I4
140 cu in (2.3 L) OHC 2bbl I4
122 cu in (2.0 L) DOHC EFI I4
Transmission 3-speed manual
4-speed manual
5-speed manual w/overdrive
Torque-Drive clutchless manual
2-speed Powerglide automatic
3-speed Turbo-Hydramatic auto.
Wheelbase 97.0 in (2,464 mm)
Length 169.7 in (4,310 mm)
Width 65.4 in (1,661 mm)
Height 51 in (1,295 mm)
Curb weight 2,181–2,270 lb (989–1,030 kg) (1971)
Related Pontiac Astre, Chevrolet Monza, Pontiac Sunbird, Buick Skyhawk, Oldsmobile Starfire
Designer GM & Chevrolet Design staffs
Chief Stylist, Bill Mitchell

Dura-Built 140
Dura-built 140 cu in (2.3 L) 2bbl. I-4, 84 hpThe 140 cu in engine was named Dura-Built 140 in 1976. It featured improved coolant pathways for the aluminum-block, a redesigned cylinder head incorporating quieter hydraulic valve lifters, longer life valve stem seals (which reduced oil consumption by 50%), and a redesigned water pump, head gasket, and thermostat. Warranty on the engine was five years/60,000-mile (97,000 km).[34]

"August 1, 1975. 8 a.m. Outside the southern edge of Las Vegas, Nevada. Three medium orange Vegas start their engines. They won't be turning them off much during the next 58 days except for rest and food stops, refueling and maintenance. They have a job to do."[35] Chevrolet conducted an advertised 60,000 miles in 60 days Durability Run of the 1976 Vega and its Dura-Built 140 engine. Three new Vega hatchback coupes equipped with manual transmissions and air conditioning were driven non-stop for 60,000 miles (97,000 km) in 60 days through the deserts of California and Nevada (Death Valley) using three pre-production models of the subcompact and nine non-professional drivers.

1976 Vegas on the 60,000 miles in 60 days Durability RunAll three 1976 Vegas completed a total of 180,000 miles (290,000 km) with only one "reliability" incident — a broken timing belt. This fact prompted Vega project engineer Bernie Ernest to say, "The Vega has reliability in excess of 60,000 miles, and therefore the corporation feels very comfortable with the warranty." [36]

Motor Trend in their February 1976 report The 60,000-mile Vega, said, "Chevrolet chose the 349-mile Southwestern desert route in order to show the severely criticized engine and cooling system had been improved in the 1976 model. During the 60-day test which was certified and supervised by the United States Auto Club, the three cars were subjected to ambient temperatures never lower than 99 °F (37 °C) and often reaching as high as 122 °F (50 °C). The nine drivers were instructed to treat the cars as they would their own and use the air conditioning as desired. Yet, in more than 180,000 miles of total driving, the cars used only 24 ounces of coolant, an amount attributed to normal evaporation under severe desert conditions. Furthermore, fuel economy for the three test Vegas averaged 28.9 mpg over the duration of the run, while oil was used at the rate of only one quart every 3400 miles. Translated into actual driving expenses, the three Vegas averaged a per-mile cost of 2.17 cents."[37] One of the cars went on display at the 1976 New York Auto Show. The 1976 Vega was marketed as a durable and reliable car.[38][39] The 1977 Dura-Built 140 engine added a pulse-air system to meet the more-strict 1977 U.S. exhaust emission regulations. The engine paint color (as used on all Chevy engines) changed from orange on 1976 engines, to blue on 1977 engines.

[edit] 122 CID DOHC
Cosworth Twin-Cam 16-valve, 122 cu in (2.0 L) EFI I-4, 110 hpThe Cosworth Vega 122 CID engine is a 1,994 cc (121.7 cu in) inline-four featuring a die cast aluminum alloy cylinder and case assembly and a Type 356 aluminum alloy, 16-valve cylinder head with double overhead camshafts (DOHC), designed in conjunction with English engineering company Cosworth. The camshafts are held in a removable cam-carrier which also serves as a guide for the valve lifters. Each camshaft is supported by five bearings and is turned by individual cam gears on the front end. The two overhead camshafts are driven, along with the water pump and fan, by a fiberglass cord reinforced neoprene rubber belt, much like the Vega 140 cu in engine. Below the cam carrier is a 16-valve cylinder head constructed of an aluminum alloy using sintered iron valve seats and iron cast valve seats. Sturdy forged aluminum pistons and heat-treated forged steel crankshaft and connecting rods reveal racing ancestry; assure high performance durability.[40]

The engine features a stainless steel exhaust header and electronic fuel injection (EFI) – a Bendix system with pulse-time manifold injection, four injector valves, an electronic control unit (ECU), five independent sensors and two fuel pumps. Each engine was hand-built and includes a cam cover sticker with the engine builder's signature. The Cosworth Vega engine is some 60 lb (27 kg) lighter than the SOHC Vega engine.[41] The engine develops its maximum power at 5,600 rpm and is redlined at 6,500 rpm where the SOHC Vega engine peaks at 4,400 rpm and all is done at 5,000 rpm. Final rating is 110 hp (82 kW).[42] The planned 1974 launch of the Cosworth variant was delayed when burned exhaust valves were found at 40,000 miles (64,000 km) during a 50,000 miles (80,000 km) emissions certification run. This resulted in a major redesign of the fuel system and ignition system, plus the addition of fresh air injection into the exhaust to reduce pollutants.[43] With only 3,508 of the 5,000 engines used, GM disassembled about 500; the remaining engines were scrapped.[44]

[edit] Aluminum engine block
Vega aluminum engine block has 17 percent silicon content, free standing siamese cylinder wallsGM Research Labs had been working on a sleeveless aluminum block since the late 1950s. The incentive was cost. Engineering out the four-cylinder block liners would save $8 per unit. Reynolds Metal Co. developed an eutectic alloy called A-390, composed of 77 percent aluminum, 17 percent silicon, 4 percent copper, 1 percent iron, and traces of phosphorus, zinc, manganese, and titanium — suitable for faster production diecasting, making the Vega block less expensive to manufacture than other aluminum engines. Sealed Power Corp. developed chrome-plated piston rings that were blunted to prevent cylinder bore scuffing. Basic work had been done under Eudell Jackobson of GM engineering. Then suddenly, Chevrolet got handed the job of putting this sleeveless aluminum block into production. The Vega blocks were cast in Massena, NY at the same factory that had produced the Corvair engine. The casting process provided a uniform distribution of fine primary silicon particles approximately 0.001 inches (25 µm) in size. The blocks were aged eight hours at 450 °F (232 °C) to achieve dimensional stability, then inpregnated with sodium silicate to help eliminate porosity.[2] From Massena, the cast engine blocks were shipped to GM's engine plant in Tonawanda, NY where they underwent the etch and machining operations. The cylinder bores were rough and finish-honed conventionally to a 7-microinch (180 nm) finish then etched removing approximately 0.00015-inch (3.8 µm) of aluminum, leaving the pure silicon particles prominent to form the bore surface. A four-layer plating process was necessary for the piston skirts, putting a hard iron surface opposite the silicon of the block. From Tonawanda, the engines went to the Chevrolet assembly plant in Lordstown, Ohio. The technical breakthroughs of the block lay in the die-casting method used to produce it, and in the silicon alloying which provided a compatible bore surface without liners. With a finished weight of 36 pounds (16 kg), the block weighs 51 pounds (23 kg) less than the cast-iron block of the 153 cu in (2,507 cc) inline-4 used in the Chevy II Nova.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Shanghai Maple was Geely’s ultra cheap economy brand

Englon brand to get major boost in 2011
Englon was born from the ashes of the doomed Shanghai Maple brand, both of which are controlled by Geely. Shanghai Maple was Geely’s ultra cheap economy brand, and was reborn as the Englon brand in early 2010 as part of Geely’s restructuring. At the Beijing 2010 Auto Show Geely announced dozens of new cars !!!!!!!!

Englon SC5-RV to launch on 11/2011
Englon basically means England-London and was Geely’s brand under which it would be build the London Taxi series but at the Beijing Auto Show earlier this year it appears that Geely have bigger plans for the Englon brand than just a taxi brand, they appear to be making it into their new budget brand !!!!!!!!!!

De Tomaso Pantera!!

The car was designed by US-born designer Tom Tjaarda[3] and replaced the De Tomaso Mangusta. Unlike the Mangusta, which employed a steel backbone chassis, the Pantera was a steel monocoque design, the first instance of De Tomaso using this construction technique. It made its public debut in Modena in March 1970 and was presented at the 1970 New York Motor Show a few weeks later.[3] Approximately a year after that production Panteras started finding their way into the hands of customers and production had already been ramped up to a remarkable (by the standards of Modena-built exotica) 3 per day.[3]

The curious slat-backed seats which had attracted comment at the New York Show were replaced by more conventional body-hugging sports-car seats in the production cars: leg-room was generous but the pedals were off-set and headroom was insufficient for drivers above approximately 6 ft. (ca. 183 cm) tall.[3] Reflecting its makers' transatlantic ambitions, the Pantera came with an abundance of standard features which appeared exotic in Europe, such as electric windows, air conditioning and even "doors that buzz when ... open".[3] By the time the Pantera reached production, the interior was in most respects well sorted, although resting an arm on the central console could lead to inadvertently activating the poorly located cigarette lighter.[3]

The first 1971 Panteras were powered by a Ford 351 cu in (5.8 L) V8 engine that produced 330 hp (246 kW; 335 PS). The high torque provided by the Ford engine reduced the need for excessive gear changing at low speeds: this made the car much less demanding to drive in urban conditions than many of the locally built competitor products.[3]

The ZF transaxle used in the Mangusta was also used for the Pantera: a passenger in an early Pantera recorded that the mechanical noises emanating from the transaxle were more intrusive than the well restrained engine noise.[3] Another Italian exotic that shares the ZF transaxle is the Maserati Bora, also launched in 1971 though not yet available for sale.[4] Power-assisted four-wheel disc brakes and rack and pinion steering were all standard equipment on the Pantera. The 1971 Pantera could accelerate to 60 mph (97 km/h) in 5.5 seconds according to Car and Driver.

In the summer of 1971 a visitor to the De Tomaso plant at Modena identified two different types of Pantera awaiting shipment, being respectively the European and American versions.[3] From outside, the principal differences were the larger tail lamps on the cars destined for America along with "fender side-lamps".[3] Not being a cost-accountant but a journalist, the visitor was impressed by the large number of cars awaiting shipment: in reality spending the best part of a year under dust covers in a series of large hangars probably did nothing for the cash-flow of the business or the condition of some of the cars by the time they crossed the Atlantic.

De Tomaso Pantera at Goodwood Festival of Speed 2010


Late in 1971, Ford began importing Panteras for the American market to be sold through its Lincoln Mercury dealers. The first 75 cars were simply European imports and are known for their "push-button" door handles and hand-built Carrozzeria Vignale bodies. A total of 1,007 Panteras reached the United States that first year. Unfortunately, these cars were poorly built, and several Panteras broke down during testing on Ford's own test track. Early crash testing at UCLA showed that safety cage engineering was not very well understood in the 1970s. Rust-proofing was minimal on these early cars, and the quality of fit and finish was poor, with large amounts of lead being used to cover body panel flaws. Notably, Elvis Presley once fired a gun at his Pantera after it wouldn't start.

1972 De Tomaso Pantera InteriorSeveral modifications were made for the 1972 model year Panteras. A new 4 Bolt Main Cleveland Engine, also 351 in3, was used with lower compression (from 11:1 to 8.6:1, chiefly to meet US emissions standards and run on lower octane standard fuel) but with more aggressive camshaft timing (in an effort to reclaim some of the power lost through the reduction in compression). Many other engine changes were made, including the use of a factory exhaust header.

The "Lusso" (luxury) Pantera L was also introduced in 1972. It featured large black bumpers for the US market as well as a 248 hp (185 kW) Cleveland engine. The 1974 Pantera GTS featured yet more luxury items and badging.

Ford ended their importation to the U.S. in 1975, having sold roughly 5,500 cars in the United States. De Tomaso continued to build the car, however, in ever-escalating forms of performance and luxury for more than a decade. A small number of Panteras were imported to the US by gray market importers in the 1980s, notably Panteramerica and AmeriSport. In all, about 7,200 Panteras were built.


An Amazing Fact About Gear BOX Changes !!

Formula One cars, like any other car also have 8-speed gearboxes (7 forward and 1 reverse) which are put under extensive stresses during the races. In some cases, gearboxes are the cause of engine blow ups during the race because if the gearbox doesn’t put itself into the right region, it increases load on engine which can heat up and go bang during the race.

The Formula One gearshift stick is actually located beneath the steering wheel which drivers can be seen changing from onboard cameras during the race.

We all commute to our work daily and during a trip to office/college or any other place, change gears several times, maybe not more than 50 times at best. But a Formula One car in Monaco undergoes 3,600 gear changes in one race that is 300 kilometers long with 78 laps and lasts for 1hour and 40 minutes approximately.

This means one gearshift approximately every 1.6s at average. If 24 cars make it to the starting grid, that means a whopping 86,400 gearshifts every Monaco GP. And it’s all semi-automatic !