AiS Challenge Team Interim

Team Number: 095

School Name: Silver High School

Area of Science: Physics

Project Title: The Perfect Engine



It was difficult to decide which type of problem to work on, but an excellent topic was eventually realized. Last year, the judges disapproved of our project idea because we did not make the world a better place. It did not solve any problems. We only made a mathematical model to demonstrate the effects of Simple Harmonic Motion upon an object. This year, we decided to try to create a program that could actually be used to accomplish something good. We also wanted to choose an appealing topic that was not just chosen because of the complicated math involved. Utilizing those ideas, we chose to center our project on Internal Combustion Engines.

Instead of making a program that would only evaluate and demonstrate the operation of an engine, we decided to create a program where the user is able to enter specific values for their particular engine. Users can input cylinder shape and size, cubic centimeters, piston and oil ring size, simplified spark plug voltage capacity, coolant cavity size and capability, fuel mixture types, and exhaust port numbers, sizes and temperatures. With these given values, the program can evaluate the performance of that automobile engine, and output the general efficiency. By comparing the efficiency to that of a "perfect" similar engine, the program tells the user how to boost his or her engine to peak performance. The user can find out where energy losses are occurring, and can read the outputted charts and lists that describe the symptoms of their vehicle.

This computer program will be called The Perfect Engine. Users can get measurements and statistics from a mechanic's manual, and after The Perfect Engine calibrates solutions to the weaknesses of the engine, lists of information can be read on possible approaches to fixing multiple impurities with the internal combustion system. For example, if the user finds out that their engine is losing too much heat in some of the cylinders, The Perfect Engine will use the given statistics for that engine to determine weather it is most likely a coolant problem, piston blow-by, or valve corrosions. The Perfect Engine cuts problem-shooting time down significantly by locating just one or two problems and giving exact solutions rather than guessing. The precise research and calculations that will be done will render nearly perfect results for a very wide variety of engine types.

Because many engines are very different in size, shape, and thermal energy ratios, a very unique approach will be taken. The diagnosis must be broken down into the most basic unit parts of the system. Instead of diagnosing an entire internal combustion engine system at the same time, The Perfect Engine will begin with an analysis of only one cylinder. After statistics for that cylinder are recorded, the program will move on to the next and the next. Because of this very focused approach, results are very accurate, and very specific suggestions can be made concerning repairs of the system. Once repaired, the vehicle can be used for much cheaper, and full performance of the vehicle can be expected. Another neat use for The Perfect Engine is comparing a certain engine to other engine types. Maximum efficiency can be found for both engines, and users can find out exactly how close they are to meeting the vehicle's top performance expectancy.

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