What is Diesel: Definition and 145 Discussions

A diesel locomotive is a type of railway locomotive in which the prime mover is a diesel engine. Several types of diesel locomotives have been developed, differing mainly in the means by which mechanical power is conveyed to the driving wheels.
Early internal combustion locomotives and railcars used kerosene and gasoline as their fuel. Rudolf Diesel patented his first compression-ignition engine in 1898, and steady improvements to the design of diesel engines reduced their physical size and improved their power-to-weight ratios to a point where one could be mounted in a locomotive. Internal combustion engines only operate efficiently within a limited torque range, and while low power gasoline engines could be coupled to mechanical transmissions, the more powerful diesel engines required the development of new forms of transmission. This is because clutches would need to be very large at these power levels and would not fit in a standard 2.5 m (8 ft 2 in)-wide locomotive frame, or wear too quickly to be useful.
The first successful diesel engines used diesel–electric transmissions, and by 1925 a small number of diesel locomotives of 600 hp (450 kW) were in service in the United States. In 1930, Armstrong Whitworth of the United Kingdom delivered two 1,200 hp (890 kW) locomotives using Sulzer-designed engines to Buenos Aires Great Southern Railway of Argentina. In 1933, diesel–electric technology developed by Maybach was used to propel the DRG Class SVT 877, a high-speed intercity two-car set, and went into series production with other streamlined car sets in Germany starting in 1935. In the United States, diesel–electric propulsion was brought to high-speed mainline passenger service in late 1934, largely through the research and development efforts of General Motors dating back to the late 1920s and advances in lightweight car body design by the Budd Company.
The economic recovery from World War II caused the widespread adoption of diesel locomotives in many countries. They offered greater flexibility and performance than steam locomotives, as well as substantially lower operating and maintenance costs. Diesel–hydraulic transmissions were introduced in the 1950s, but, from the 1970s onwards, diesel–electric transmissions have dominated.

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  1. btostes

    A Does anyone know typical values of cutoff ratio in diesel engines?

    Hello, Does anyone know typical values of cutoff ratio in diesel engines? And how have they evolved through time? Thank you!
  2. Optymista93

    Cleaning of the finned tubes on gas cooler without disassembling

    Hi, I've been thinking about the solution for cleaning a water-cooled gas cooler and would love to hear some advice from the smarter people with more experience. Description - I will try to roughly explain the concept. Gas Cooler is used to decrease exhaust gas temperature. The exhaust gas...
  3. A

    Measurement of actual CO2 mass emitted from a diesel engine

    I was wondering if there is a method to measure the actual total mass of carbon dioxide (CO2) emitted from a diesel engine used with a generator for power generation (https://www.cat.com/en_US/products/new/power-systems/electric-power/diesel-generator-sets/1000028914.html). Infrared CO2 sensors...
  4. A

    Inconsistent flow rate measurements of an engine diesel fuel

    I am measuring the volumetric flow rate of a diesel fuel using "Turbines" flow meter, both in the supply and return fuel lines of an industrial diesel engine (https://www.cat.com/en_US/products/new/power-systems/industrial/industrial-diesel-engines/18398034.html – coupled with a generator for...
  5. T

    Cooling a marine engine while testing

    For my internship I have to test and certify a Marine diesel engine. We are trying to run a few tests in our workshop, but this obviously means we can't use the sea or a river as cooling. We bought an IBC tank, which can hold a 1000 liters of water. The water from the tank will be running...
  6. S

    Gato / Balao Submarine "Can't" vs "Must" Surface on Dead Battery

    I've read a lot about Gato / Balao / Tensch class submarines, the ones America used in WWII, and I can't seem to sort out the specific consequences of a dead battery. A lot of you are diesel experts, so maybe someone here knows? Historical accounts are vague. Dead batteries are certainly a big...
  7. S

    Diesel Injector and Water Tube Boiler Back-Pressure

    Diesel injector: How much pressure relative to the maximum combustion chamber pressure during the sharpest phase of detonation does an injector need to be able to overcome to inject its full charge? How much overlap is typical between injection and detonation? Water-tube boiler: Are the water...
  8. L

    Engineering Reviewing Efficiency of Otto & Diesel Cycle Heat Engines

    Hi, i have this question and don't understand it. can somebody explain what i have to do. i know a ideal engine is a engine running on carnot cycle i what the cycles are i don't know what relative efficiency is and what there looking for (Q) Review the relative efficiency of ideal heat engines...
  9. L

    Engineering Evaluate 2-stroke & 4-stroke Diesel engines therm & mechanical efficiency

    Evaluate 2-stroke & 4-stroke Diesel engines performance in terms of thermal & mechanical effiniecy HAs anybody got any links. all i can find is for petrol (2-stroke and 4-stroke). Is what i got so far any good?Thermal In a 2-stroke power stroke compared to a 4-stroke power stroke thermal...
  10. L

    Engineering Otto and Diesel cycles: Which PV diagram is for SI and CI?

    Writing about Engines and just muddled up diagrams and confused now. Which PV diagrams is for Compression Ignition and which one for Compression Ignition. I think one on left is CI and right SI. Cheers
  11. D

    Automotive Diesel engine parts for post-treatment of diesel engine gas exhaust

    Hi folks, Any idea about what is it? I am required to find parts like these items which are made of stainless steel 304 and used on the post-treatment of diesel engine gas.
  12. M

    External Gear Pump: Capacity & Pressure Effects

    Hi everyone, Let's say I have an external gear pump driven by the camshaft of a marine diesel engine. The nominal speed of the engine is 1800 rpm and the capacity of the pump at nominal speed is 8 L/min. Diesel fuel is supplied to the gear pump suction at 0.4 bar g pressure via a 15 mm pipe...
  13. R

    Expansion in non-adiabatic Otto / Diesel cycles

    Hello! I have a question that has been bothering me for a while now. If we look at the expansion step of a real otto or diesel cycle we see that while the pressure drops to near surrounding levels the temperature remains relatively high ( high T of the exhaust gas). How is that possible? How...
  14. R

    I Non-adiabatic expansion in Diesel and Otto cycles

    Hello! I have a question that has been bothering me for a while now. If we look at the expansion step of a real otto or diesel cycle, we see that while the pressure drops to near surrounding levels, the temperature remains relatively high ( high T of the exhaust gas). How is that possible? How...
  15. F

    Use of a Water-Cooled Diesel Generator as an Off-Grid CHP System

    I am looking at options I have available for providing Power Heat and Light to a collection of houses and barns I am planning to convert into a small holiday complex in rural France. I plan to run this complex as an agricultural small holding with holiday let's in 4 x renovated French farm...
  16. Chincha40

    B Hp/Kw required to move 1.5L/m of diesel fuel at 17.2 Bar?

    How much Hp/Kw required to move 1.5L/m of Diesel fuel at 17.2 Bar? Please note this is for a real life problem.
  17. Enzo777

    Automotive Finding the Peak Pressure of a Diesel Injection Pump

    I am trying to find peak pressure of a diesel engine injection pump.. It doesn't have to be exact but +/- 1000psi would be fine. The basic principle is the same as an engine. Piston goes up and covers a fill hole, once it is covered the only way it can flow fuel is through the injector, so...
  18. V

    Otto and Diesel Cycle: Heat Addition & Cutoff Ratios

    In case of Otto cycle we consider that heat is immediately added to air fuel mixture(i.e constant volume heat addition) but in case of diesel cycle we consider heat addition at constant pressure and we also talk of cutoff ratios.why so??
  19. M

    Automotive Flash Point of Petrol & Diesel: Pressure & Self Ignition

    Flash point temperature of petrol is lesser than that of diesel at the same pressure. Does this mean, if I take petrol and diesel as liquids in separate containers and heat them, rapid vapourisation (rapid enough to sustain a combustion) of petrol occurs at a lower temperature(fire point) than...
  20. V

    Increasing Diesel Engine Efficiency with Retractable Plates

    In case of diesel cycle thermal efficiency is low, because heat addition takes place at constant pressure.so can we introduce some retractable plate which sits below the piston during end of compression stroke,and retracts back after heat addition,thus providing constant volume heat addition and...
  21. physea

    B Laws in Otto, Diesel, etc. cycles

    Hello guys, I am a bit confused. Is it that PV/T=constant for ALL the processes of ALL cycles, like Otto, Diesel, Rankine? I know that PV=mRT, so does that mean that PV/T=constant all the time? Secondly, I am a bit confused as I read that PV^γ=constant. What is that exactly? Where does it come...
  22. X

    Thermal efficiency of a Diesel engine

    Hi, i’m learning about the thermal efficiency of a diesel cycle at university and I'm trying to understand the equation. The first law of thermodynamics states Wnet + Qnet = 0, but one of the attachments below says Qnet - Wnet = 0 and I don't understand how this is the case. Also, for process...
  23. yangshi

    What Are the Advantages of a Rotating Detonation Engine for Naval Ships?

    Just trying to understand how efficient RDE's are thermodynamically based on a 2016 paper from Bulat and Volkov titled "Detonation Jet Engine. Part 1 – Thermodynamic Cycle" and a 2013 paper by Nordeen et. al. titled "Thermodynamic Model of a Rotating Detonation Engine": Based on these papers...
  24. H

    Is LNG a Better Alternative to Diesel for Generators?

    Hi all, This is related to this thread https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/solar-batteries.928495/ I just heard that in 2 - 3 years, the LNG mains will be installed in my area. I need some help to gather info on modern LNG generator performance (the latest models, just in case the older...
  25. J

    Alternator With Inverter (Basic)

    Hi everyone I am currently working with diesel railcars. To power the electrical systems, we have engines connected to alternators, which then connect to static inverters. The auxiliary power system runs off the static inverters, initially at 415V AC but distributed throughout the railcars at...
  26. S

    Why use diesel oil in fracking?

    Without getting into the environmental controversies about fracking, why would using diesel oil in the process be useful just from an engineering standpoint? Is it used to lubricate the machinery?
  27. I

    Final Flow Rate for 900 lpm Diesel Pump & 30m Hose

    I have a diesel pump doing 900 lpm with a hose reel 30 meters long, the inside diameter of the hose is 32mm. The frictional loss for 30 meters of hose is 461.04 kPa. The Viscosity of Diesel is 4.5 mPas. I would like to know the final flow rate. thanks in advance
  28. J

    Replacing a diesel engine with an electric motor

    Hi all, I have a little project on my hands and I will go into a little detail to help everyone better understand. I built a mobile boutique out of a shuttle bus for my fiancé to run her business out of. There is a large rooftop air conditioner on top of the roof for cooling and the...
  29. C

    Automotive Common rail high pressure pump

    Hello everyone, I have a question about a common rail high pressure pump. Most common rail pumps make use of a pressure control-valve which controls the amount of fuel that goes to the plunger. This way it is possible to control how much fuel goes to the rail, so it controls the pressure...
  30. S

    Automotive Air fuel ratio effects in diesel vs. petrol engines

    I'm a mechanic who is currently doing a study automotive engineering. Being someone who worked on both diesel and petrol cars I know what a higher or lower air fuel ratio (AFR) will do for both engines. However I don't fully understand how the following is possible. "Adding fuel in a diesel...
  31. elixer akm

    Thermal vs Mech. Efficiency of Engines: Petrol vs Diesel

    What is the difference between thermal efficiency and mechanical efficiency of an engine...and which engine is more efficient ..petrol or diesel
  32. I

    Concentrating diesel fuel and or wood into liquid fuel?

    I was looking at btu numbers for common fuels and noticed 1 barrel of crude oil (42 gallons) contains 5,800,000 btu's with diesel fuel containing 139,000 btu's per gallon would it be possible to concentrate 42 gallons of diesel fuel to get more btu's per gallon? Also the wood into liquid fuel...
  33. R

    How to reduce the heat from diesel exchaust gas

    I am building a Rapid Pulse Carbonation prototype Reactor unit, I am capturing the Steam form the process and passing it though a Plate and Tube condenser to produce water, also I will capture the CO2 gas from the heating system. How would I reduce the exhaust gas heat before I pass the exhaust...
  34. K

    Diesel Electric Locomotive formula

    What formulas do Diesel Electric Locomotive manufactures use when designing new Locomotives? Are there any good books on the subject? Locomotive meaning train engine. I want to understand freight engine designs not passenger. Thank you, Kevin
  35. zwanderer

    Electrostatic precipitators to capture diesel pollution?

    I would like to understand if someone has tried/or atleast if its feasible to make a Electrostatic precipitators that captures automotive pollution from sources like this? Does the physics allow to do that?
  36. L

    A question about diesel engines

    I have read ( excuse me but i don't remember the reference) that a diesel engine, contrary to an engine that works on the otto cycle, is a " steady torque" engine meaning that torque doesn't change with revolutions. Could someone explain me the reason? ( in case that this statement is true )...
  37. M

    Diesel injector sac pressure calculation

    I am trying to calculate the nozzle sac pressure required to deliver 60mm3/ms of diesel fuel into a pressurised cylinder (19MPa). The nozzle has 5 delivery holes of diameter 0.157mm and the discharge co-efficient is 0.87. The sac diameter= 0.7 mm and the sac volume= 0.12mm3. I have tried to use...
  38. S

    Price for the cheapest diesel engine?

    What is the price per kilowatt or hp for the simplest, cheapest diesel engine, such as ones used for powering irrigation pumps? Say one of 1/2 MW or 1 MW. S.A.
  39. Monsterboy

    Mean effective pressure in a diesel engine

    Homework Statement Air enters a diesel engine with a density of 1.0 kg/m3. The compression ratio is 21 .At steady state ,the air intake is 30 x10-3 Kg/s and the net work output is 15 kW .The mean effective pressure (in kPa) is ... Homework Equations Pm= W.D/ Vs...
  40. S

    Otto & Diesel Cycles: Heat Addition/Rejection Processes

    why are heat addition and rejection processes in an otto cycle constant volume processes?similarily why does heat addition occurs at constant pressure in a diesel cycle?
  41. H

    Copper Sulfate Pentahydrarte will dissolve in diesel fuel?

    Hello all, In interested making a wood preservative using diesel fuel, paraffin plus an algaeicide. I am wondering if Copper Sulfate Pentahydrarte will dissolve in diesel fuel? If not are there other copper chemicals that may? thanks in advance, HarryA
  42. B

    Automotive Combution, energy and pressure relation

    Hello guys, I'm currently working on a car simulation just for fun, but I'm stuck... The force to move a car is generated by burning fuel ( to be more percise, diesel or gasolin). But there are more variables: Pressure (i know this because of turbos and such) amount of fuel amount of air (or...
  43. T

    Diesel engine injection timing

    How does start of injection effected by speed of the engine? According to data, it seems for higher engine speed, the SOI (in terms of degree BTC) is higher.
  44. C

    How Is Heat Calculated in a Diesel Cycle Using Volumes and Temperatures?

    1. Ideal gas cycle - diesel engine cycle. You begin at some volume V1. Perform an adiabatic compression to V2. Perform an expansion to V3 at constant pressure. Next, perform an adiabatic expansion to V4, Last, it moves back to V1 at a fixed volume, while decreasing temperature back to...
  45. R

    Paralleling a Diesel Generator Set

    I have seen many establishments having a backup electric supply using a Diesel Generator Set (AC / 3 phase). e.g. Something like in the Photo Below. What happens if the connected load grows beyond the capacity of a single generator? e.g. The unit in the photo is rated for 200 kVA. Suppose the...
  46. M

    Differences between otto and diesel

    Why do we want self-ignition in diesel engines but do not want it in otto engines or in other words why does self-ignition cause detonation in otto engines but do not cause in diesel engines?
  47. S

    Relation between SFC vs RPM in diesel engine?

    What is the relation between sfc vs rpm in diesel engine and why does it happen like that ? what is relation between air flow vs rpm ??
  48. J

    Exploring the Limitations of Standard Diesel Engines

    this is thing I'm thinking about for few years. why standard passenger car diesel engines are so limited in engine capacities range? if we take petrol engines, there are anything from 1.0 liter to 3.0l Inline 4 cylinders, 2.0-4.0l 6 cylinders (or even bigger in USA), 4-7l V8 etc. but take...
  49. A

    Exploring Diesel Engine Friction and Fuel Mass Flow Rate

    Hi I have been plotting a Willans line, (engine power against fuel mass flow rate) and I noticed that the line is fairly linear up to about 75% and then it starts to increase a bit more dramatically. So I was wondering how does engine power at a fixed RPM effect fuel mass flow rate? Is...