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Difference Between Petrol and Diesel Engine

S.No Petrol Engine Diesel Engine

1. The petrol engine works on Otto cycle i.e. The diesel engine works on diesel cycle
on constant volume. i.e. on constant pressure.
2. The air and petrol are mixed in the The fuel is fed into the cylinder by a fuel
carburetor before they enter into the injector and is mixed with air inside the
cylinder. cylinder.
3. The petrol engine compresses a mixture of The diesel engine compresses only a charge
air and petrol which is ignited by an of air and ignition is done by the heat of
electric spark. compression.
4. Compression ratio is low. Compression ratio is higher in diesel
(8:1 to 12:1) engine. (14:1 to 25:1)
(Gasoline engines use lower compression
ratios to avoid fuel auto ignition)
5. Less power is produced due to lower Due to higher compression ratio more power
compression ratio. is produced. (Higher compression ratios lead
to higher thermal efficiencies and better fuel
6. Petrol engine is fitted with a spark plug It is fitted with a fuel injector.(used glow
7. Burns fuel that has high volatility. Burns fuel that has low volatility.
8. They are used in light vehicles which They are used in heavy vehicles which
requires less power require high power.
Eg: car, jeep, motorcycle, scooters etc. Eg: bushes, trucks, locomotive etc.

9. Fuel consumption in petrol engine is high. Fuel consumption in diesel engine is less.
10. Lighter Heavier
11. Petrol engine requires frequent Overhauling of diesel engine is done after a
overhauling. long time.
12. Lesser starting problem. Greater starting problem.
13. Lower initial cost. Higher initial cost.
14. Lower maintenance cost. Higher maintenance cost.


In a gasoline engine, the explosion process is:
1. Intake stroke fuel is mixed with air

2. Compression stroke piston goes up, mixture of fuel and air is compressed

3. Ignition stroke fuel/air is ignited through the use of a spark plug

4. Exhaust stroke piston goes up, pushes exhaust through the exhaust valve

In a diesel engine, the explosion process is:

1. Intake stroke intake valve opens, air in, piston goes down

2. Compression stroke piston goes up, air compressed (heated in excess of 540C)

3. Combustion stroke fuel is injected (right time), ignition, piston goes down

4. Exhaust piston goes up, pushes exhaust through the exhaust valve
4. Why are glow plug used in diesel engine?
A glowplug (alternatively spelled as glow plug or glow-plug) is a heating device to a
high temperature (around 750850 degrees Celsius) used to aid starting diesel engines.

In cold weather, high speed diesel engines can be difficult to start because the mass of
the cylinder block and cylinder head absorb the heat of compression, preventing
ignition due to the higher surface-to-volume ratio.
Pre-chambered engines make use of small electric heaters inside the pre-chambers
glow plugswhile the direct-injected engines have these glow plugs in the combustion

The glowplug is a pencil-shaped piece of metal with a heating element at the tip. This
heating element, when electrified, heats due to its electrical resistance and begins to
emit light in the visible spectrum, hence the term "glow"-plug. The visual effect is very
similar to that of a toaster.

The fuel injector spray pattern then impinges directly upon the hot tip of the glow plug
during the injection of fuel at top dead center.
This enables the fuel to ignite even when the engine is insufficiently hot for normal
operation. This reduces the cranking time needed to start the diesel engine.

5. How is the fuel delivered into cylinder for 2 stroke diesel engine?

A two-stroke diesel engine (fig. 1-13) shares the same operating principles as other internal
combustion engines. The two-stroke diesel engine has a less complicated valve train because it
does not use intake valves. Instead, it requires a supercharger to force air into the cylinder and
force exhaust gases out, because the piston cannot do this naturally as in four-stroke engines.
The two-stroke diesel takes in air and discharges exhaust through a system called scavenging.
Scavenging begins with the piston at bottom dead center. At this point, the intake ports are
uncovered in the cylinder wall and the exhaust valve is open. The supercharger forces air into
the cylinder and, as the air of forced in, the burned gases from the previous operating cycle are
forced out. The two stroke cycle is so called because it takes two strokes of the piston to
complete the processes needed to convert the energy in the fuel into work. Because the engine
is reciprocating, this means that the piston must move up and down the cylinder, and therefore
the crankshaft must revolve once.
1. The crankshaft is revolving clockwise 2. Just before TDC fuel is injected into the
and the piston is moving up the cylinder, cylinder by the fuel injector. The fuel is
compressing the charge of air. Because "atomised" into tiny droplets. Because they
energy is being transferred into the air, its are very small these droplets heat up very
pressure and temperature increase. By the quickly and start to burn as the piston passes
time the piston is approaching the top of over TDC. The expanding gas from the fuel
the cylinder (known as Top Dead Center or burning in the oxygen forces the piston
TDC) the pressure is over 100 bar and the down the cylinder, turning the crankshaft. It
temperature over 500C is during this stroke that work energy is
being put into the engine; during the upward
stroke of the piston, the engine is having to
do the work.

3. As the piston moves down the cylinder, 4. At about 140 after TDC the piston
the useful energy from the burning fuel is uncovers a set of ports known as scavenge
expended. At about 110 after TDC the ports. Pressurized air enters the cylinder via
exhaust valve opens and the hot exhaust these ports and pushes the remaining
gas (consisting mostly of nitrogen, carbon exhaust gas from the cylinder in a process
dioxide, water vapour and unused known as "scavenging".
oxygen) begin to leave the cylinder.
The piston now goes past Bottom Dead
Centre and starts moving up the cylinder,
closing off the scavenge ports. The exhaust
valve then closes and compression begins