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Characteristics of a Diesel Engine - Coursework Example

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Many engine manufactures have had to explore techniques in order to update their diesel engines and keep them within the requirements of automotive emissions regulations. There is certainly a worry about decreased performance of diesel engines when they are more "clean running." When emission regulations were not required, the diesel engine was a very efficient tool, able to run and maintain itself with its large use of heat…
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Characteristics of a Diesel Engine
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Download file to see previous pages Following this, many researchers have been trying to find ways to make the diesel engines run as powerfully as they have in the past. Some ideas that have been considered so far are new modes of combustion, exhaust gas recirculation - EGR, after treatment and use of hydrogen produced by fuel reforming as a combustion improver. For diesel engines, these techniques are mainly focused on the reduction of both nitrogen oxides (NOx) and particulate matter (PM) emissions. EGR has been extensively used as a successful method of reducing NOx emissions, but it results in a well-reported increase in the fuel consumption and increased smoke and PM emissions, as the air admitted into the engine is partially substituted by exhaust gases. In this paper, a closer look will be taken at more effective diesel engines, considering the history of diesel engines up to issues affecting diesel engines in the present time.
Diesel engines use internal-combustion to produce their effects, and were invented by Rudolf Diesel. Diesel patented his invention in 1892. Originally he had planned to use coal for the engine's fuel, but in modern times, the diesel actually uses fuel oil, which is relatively affordable. There are several benefits for individuals who decide to use these types of engines. First, the engine does not need a significant amount of water, it warms up rather quickly, and it does a very good job of efficiently converting heat energy into work. They are also much smaller than steam units, and thus help to save space for companies that wish to use them (Columbia Encyclopedia).

Taking a closer look at the effects of diesel engines can increase overall understanding of their benefits. Therefore, a closer look at diesel engines in locomotives will be presented in this analysis (Zhao, 2006)
Steam and diesel locomotives have very different technologies and these huge differences have caused wide differences in both production and marketing for locomotive companies. Steam locomotives have remained customized and purpose-built (Yin, X., Schafer, et al. 2003). On the other hand, diesel engines are much more adaptable, allowing for the demand of fewer designs and ideas. This also helps to decrease overall costs. Therefore, because diesels have been so versatile and research costs for engines can be very high, diesels have helped to cut back costs for most designers, while allowing for increased standardization. The great shift that occurred in locomotive production from steam to diesel engines required a huge change in technology, making companies shift from more customized engines to focusing on the concept of mass production. (Churella, 1998).

The locomotive industry was therefore a bit slow to embrace this new technology, but once it did start to embrace the technology, the benefits to using diesel engines became apparent and cost-saving. It was used heavily in the industry only several decades after its original introduction. Since the railroad engine industry had already been widely established for years, and had formed its own use of other technologies to keep it going, the benefits of the diesel engine were ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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