Automobiles have heat engines whether they run on petrol or diesel. Heat engines are an interesting engineering phenomenon in which we get work out of a compression, expansion cycle. The efficiency of these engines heavily depends on the operating temperatures and ambient temperature. Keeping the temperature low would mean greater efficiency and engine performance. This phenomenon is what BMW’s new water injection system based 1series car hopes to achieve.
The company’s quest for efficiency and power has led it to this system. The lowered combustion temperatures will eventually mean economy benefits totalling eight percent of the total fuel costs. The lower temperature will also reduce knocking effect that combusts the fuel prematurely. The water system will allow the car to run on an impressive compression ratio of 11:1 instead of 9.5:1. It will mean that low and medium throttle based movement will be improved tremendously. But how will the water injection be applied to the current system?
The BMW’s water injection system sprays a fine mist with air into the intake manifold. It reduces the temperature by around 25-degree centigrade. As a result, the torque produced by the engine is ten percent greater than the average car. The lower temperature not only improves the economy and performance, it will help achieve longevity of all the components associated with the engine like a turbocharger, catalytic converter, inside of the engine cylinders and pistons themselves. It will give costs benefits not easy to calculate at the present level.
The water injection system isn’t the first one to be made by BMW. Earlier, its BMW M4 MotoGP car also had such injection system, but it required a storage tank to be filled and maintained independently of the system. The 1series goes one step further in the pursuit of this addition as it has an innovative water recovery system that fills the tank on its own. So, there won’t be a need to fill constantly it with water. All the water from the hoses is sucked up into the storage tank so that it won’t freeze and burst pipes in extreme cold too.
The water injection technology is close to becoming a reality in production as the future BMW M series are being planned to incorporate them in their manufacturing. But the company still needs to undergo some vigorous tests before this happens!