In the 16th century, inventors created a form of internal combustion engine using gunpowder as the fuel to power the movement of the pistons. Actually, it wasn’t the gunpowder that moved them. The way this early internal combustion engine worked was you’d stuff a piston all the way to the top of a cylinder and then ignite gunpowder beneath the piston. A vacuum would form after the explosion and suck the piston down the cylinder. Because this engine relied on the changes in air pressure to move the piston, they called it the atmospheric engine. It wasn’t very efficient. By the 17th century, steam engines were showing a lot of promise, so the internal combustion engine was abandoned.
Gasoline compression ignition combustion is an advanced combustion mode that has received considerable attention in recent years. While GCI combustion is not a new concept, it has evolved over the past several decades as technologies improve. Earlier GCI research was focused primarily on homogeneous charge compression ignition combustion, but in recent years, we have seen increasing interest in a continuous range of GCI combustion modes spanning fully homogeneous HCCI to partial fuel stratification modes to full stratification modes which are diesel-like in execution. These technologies have also led to a strong interest in reactivity controlled compression ignition combustion (RCCI), which makes use of the differences in reactivity of two fuels to manage the combustion process for maximum efficiency with lowest possible emissions.
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