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Old 07-31-2006, 11:34 PM   #1
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Ethanol and Torque?

Was reading this: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~dfr/fall05_newsletter.pdf

They say that the turbo and the switch to e85 increases torque 20%, wtf is this I'm hearing about e85 and torque? Is it just the octane advantage or is it something else?
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Old 08-01-2006, 02:28 AM   #2
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The turbo's actually what's responsible for the large increase, since I doubt they can run 105 octane lean enough to increase torque by 20% with stock air flow. The E85 helps of course, but if the engine was run with gas and a turbo, there would be a much more significant increase in torque (provided fueling was available) compared to the modest increase by being able to advance timing and run a bit leaner on E85. Course I'm not exactly sure how much greater than stoich you can run with higher octane fuels, so i could be totally wrong.
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Old 08-01-2006, 04:08 AM   #3
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It's probably like saying "Adding the JATO and a slightly larger crank sprocket to my bicycle allowed me to attain a MUCH higher top speed."

Both are contributing factors, but one greatly overshadows the other.
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Old 08-01-2006, 06:10 AM   #4
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Ethanol does have a higher octane than gas, but the biggest reason for more torque and power is its heat of vaporization, which is higher than gas.

It takes more heat to vaporize a stoichiometric amount of ethanol than gas. Thus, the incoming air gets cooler. Cold air is more dense, meaning that a greater mass of air is drawn into the cylinders and thus more fuel can be burned. This increases the torque.
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Old 08-01-2006, 08:18 AM   #5
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Hmm, very interesting stuff. I'm going to have to learn something about cars before I go bugging those damn engineers, currently I know very little, *cry*
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