MACHINE internal combustion (piston engine) will be likely still manufactured and used until a few years. Currently, researchers at the National Institutes of Natural Sciences (NINS) Japan is developing a laser spark plug that one day be applied on the machine.
The use of high-tech spark plugs will not only make a better engine performance and fuel efficient, but it also allows the creation of low emission.
Conventional spark plug is placed on top of the cylinder combustion chamber. This device can issue a leap plasma flame due to high voltage electricity between the two metal electrodes. Sparks is then ignited by the fuel and air mixture in the cylinder is compressed by the piston, causing an explosion in the form of expansion of the gas pressure makes the piston pushed down and turned the crank shaft.
One byproduct of this process are toxic nitrogen oxides (NOx) which pollute the air if a large scale can cause smog and acid rain that are harmful to the environment.
In order for the machine is not much produce NOx, can be achieved by reducing the ratio of fuel to less than the air in the mixture to be compressed in the cylinder machine. However, these steps remove spark plugs require greater energy to be able to burn a lean mixture of these.
It could be the way it is applied in conventional spark plugs, but it will not last long because the two electrode spark plugs will not be able to withstand the onslaught of very high voltage so that the two electrodes to melt.
Another drawback of conventional spark plugs, because its position is closer to the top of the cylinder head, then the mixture of fuel and air the top closest to the spark plugs are experiencing initial ignition, so more heat is absorbed by the blast walls of the cylinder before it reaches the piston.
To answer the challenge, only laser technology that can burn lean mixture had no damaging effect because the laser does not require electrodes. Through technology 'sparkplug laser', scientists at NINS also able to answer the limited use of conventional spark plugs.
Because the laser beam can be directed to go to the center of the piston so that the explosion that caused more symmetrical and three faster process than using conventional spark plugs.
Because the laser can be pulsed at a speed of nano-seconds, while the conventional spark plugs have a work process in milli-seconds, then in theory the use of a laser spark plugs improve engine ignition timing.
To reach the combustion air and fuel mixture is lean, the laser must have kakuatan about 100 gigawatts per cm square with short pulses of more than 10 in each ignition per milijoule.
Previously it could only be achieved through large laser, inefficient and relatively unstable. But Japanese researchers have created a small laser, stronger and more efficient for the task.
They heat the ceramic powder and then incorporate them into a solid optically transparent then implanting them with metal ions in an effort to adjust to their properties.
Laser spark plugs are made of yttrium-gallium material, lighter laser only has a width of 9 mm and 11 mm long. He has two laser rays that can burn faster and more uniform than using a lighter at two places (double spark).
Even the researchers in Japan has been considering to make a spark plug with a three-ray laser beam. Therefore can not create combustion with only one light pulse, then plugs it uses multiple pulse laser beam with a duration of 800 pico-seconds.
So far, the laser ignition system has not been used in actual cars. The scientists reportedly are negotiating with a big spark plug manufacturers and global automotive components manufacturer Denso Corporation.
By replacing the spark plug (spark plug) with the conventional spark plug laser (pulse plug) NINS claimed research findings can improve efficiency as well as performance through energy storage which is then released in the form of a ball of plasma which transmitted intense in the engine cylinder.
The plan, research from NINS will be presented next month at an event titled the Conference on Lasers and Electro Optics in Baltimore, the United States.