What Is Diesel

6 03 2009

I realized I’ve been writing a lot about biodiesel and diesel engines, but I’m not entirely sure how diesel is different from gasoline. Here’s what I learned:

The diesel engine was created in 1892 by Rudolf Diesel who considered vegetable seed oil as fuel for his invention.

Air Compression in Diesel Engine

Air Compression in Diesel Engine

A diesel engine is different because air is compressed (which heats it up) then fuel is injected. In a gasoline engine, both air and fuel are compressed together then ignited.

The compressed air reaches hotter temperatures in a diesel engine as opposed to a gasoline engine, thereby making the diesel engine more fuel efficient.

Fuel Injection in Diesel Engine

Fuel Injection in Diesel Engine

Biodiesel is very similar to petroleum diesel. It is made when plant oils are combined with methanol and chemically altered to make fatty acids.

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