Fuel for Thought

  • What Is A Spark-Ignition Fuel?

What Is A Spark-Ignition Fuel?

Feb 25 2019 Read 1622 Times

With the majority of UK drivers using petrol-fuelled car, it may be surprising that not many of us understand exactly how the fuel works inside our vehicle. Without an understanding of how your car works, you may be left open to vehicle issues and complications that you're unable to resolve.

More often than not, your vehicle probably runs on spark-ignition fuel. Due to its nature, gasoline – or petrol – engines all use spark ignition in order to run most efficiently. Read on to discover more about spark ignition fuel and how it works to fuel your car.

How does it work?

First things first, what exactly is a spark ignition fuel? Well, the term spark ignition refers to a system in which the air-fuel mixture inside the combustion chamber of an engine is ignited by a spark. The system uses an electrical field made inside a magnet or coil, which builds thousands of volts set on a timed circuit. The surge of current travels along the wire, ending at the spark plug inside the combustion chamber.

The system is automated so that an electrical spark occurs as the surge of current tries to jump the precision gap at the end of the spark plug. At the exact same time, a precisely measured mixture of fuel and air is thoroughly compressed int eh combustion chamber, resulting in a controlled explosion with enough power to turn the engine. The exact measurement of each component in spark ignition fuel is vital for maintaining a safe and controlled explosion. Take a look at the ‘Introducing the ASTM Method for PIONA Compound Analysis by GC-VUV’ e-learning session to discover more about the measurement of these components.

Advantages of spark ignition fuel

Petrol engines, which use spark ignition to run, tend to give off less harmful emissions than a diesel alternative. They are more efficient vehicles, providing higher performance capacities than diesel engines. Petrol engines are the most popular engine type in the UK, largely down to the fact they are more lightweight, quieter and cheaper than the alternatives.

However, spark ignition vehicles tend to need more maintenance than diesel engines and typically have shorter lifespans. Also, spark ignition fuel vehicle drivers must take care when putting fuel into their car, as the incorrect mixture of fuels, including the wrong calibre biofuel, could lead to irreparable engine damage. For more information about the best fuel types and technologies for your vehicle, come along to the PETEC 2019 convention in May to take part in industry conferences and exhibitions.

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