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Old 06-14-2011, 05:17 AM   #1
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Lightbulb Crazy or good idea?

I had a thought this morning about modern fuel injection systems: What about one O2 sensor per cylinder?

Currently V-engines use one O2 sensor per bank (not counting the post-cat sensors) to make sure each bank gets its mixture controlled separately from the other, in case there's any difference. Well, then it's still averaging the cylinders in that bank...why not sense each cylinder and avoid treating them all the same? There's already one injector per cylinder, so it's just a matter of pairing O2 sensors to the injectors, monitoring individual sensors, and controlling their paired injectors.

They'd have to be right at the top of the exhaust manifold, obviously. They couldn't reasonably be wideband; I can't imagine that any amount of fuel economy or longevity from adjusting individual cylinders' fuel injection would ever pay back that kind of investment. Would individual narrowband sensors be better than single wideband sensors (common in the past few years)? Could they compliment each other?

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Old 06-14-2011, 07:53 AM   #2
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Re: Crazy or good idea?

That's a nifty idea. If nothing else, it would help out in diagnostics. It would take much less time to identify which cylinder has a problem.

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Old 06-14-2011, 08:29 AM   #3
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Re: Crazy or good idea?

A more effective (and cheaper) route might be to put EGT sensors in all exhaust ports. You can use the O2 for overall tuning, and the EGT to tweak for cylinder uniformity.

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Old 06-14-2011, 10:19 PM   #4
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Re: Crazy or good idea?

Some racing cars (F1 for example) already do what you are suggesting.

I think the main reason is simply costs. One sensor per bank is cheaper and less expensive to replace when the time comes so consumers like that option over saving some smaller value in fuel consumed.

I do agree it is the optimum way to set up for better economy.

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Old 06-20-2011, 09:24 AM   #5
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Re: Crazy or good idea?

That is a good idea. Injectors will not all work the same after years of use, so this would compensate for that, and make a old car run better with less maintenance. I guess on the other hand O2 sensors wear out too...
I think six cheapo one wire sensors would be better than two wide band, and for about the same price.
It could even result in a car that could run one cylinder on open loop, with the rest on closed (when something was wrong).

It seems like it wouldn't even be that hard or expensive to add in the extra sensors to an existing car. Which would be great for diagnostic reasons, but to get the computer to use that data would requite a great deal of know how an likely a new computer.
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