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Engine Acceleration

In the world of high performance, we have heard that power is nothing without control. Now we can also consider that power is nothing without acceleration.

The example that a diesel engine can produce a lot of power, but is unable to produce a fast rate of acceleration, demonstrates the significance of acceleration. Further examples of high power levels with low levels of acceleration can be seen in a racing competition between an elephant and a horse; the one horsepower animal is faster.

In animals, the rapid movement of feet produces a fast run, and in a high performance car, the rapid rotation of the crankshaft produces acceleration.

The effects of engine acceleration on the performance of a sports car can be seen in vehicles that produce high power on a dyno, but fail to produce the desired result on the race track. High power engines that are poor performers at the track are usually lacking a rapid rate of engine acceleration.

Acceleration has much to do with the combustion process. Combustion is primarily dependent on the quality of the cylinder head, along with the working relationship between the cylinder head, intake manifold, exhaust system, camshaft and piston. The faster the combustion process occurs and the greater the force of energy applied to the top of the piston, the better the rate of engine acceleration. Achieving an equal balance of power production in each cylinder will also help to produce smoother and faster engine acceleration.

Technically, acceleration is an increase in velocity measured in time and an object will accelerate only if a force is applied to increase the velocity. In a high performance engine, the quality of combustion determines the force that will be applied to the piston and a rapid rate of combustion can help to increase the velocity of the piston, thereby increasing the acceleration rate of the engine.

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Ned Erkman
Author of The Read for Speed

Copyright 2005 The Read For Speed. All Rights Reserved.
Reproduction in whole or in part without expressed written permission from the author
is strictly prohibited.

Power Of Knowledge
Performance Power of Cylinderheads
Intake Manifold Power Production
Camshaft Power Production
Mathmatical Formulas
Engine Development

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