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Old April 30th, 2004, 07:57 PM   #26
Join Date: Feb 2000
Location: Harrisburg, PA
Posts: 106
Originally Posted by krisw
ok, so im wondering which of these 2 explanations is correct in describing what detonation is. is detonation when the air/fuel mixture gets so compressed and hot that it detonates BEFORE the spark plug goes off? or is detonation when a small pocket of air/fuel spontaneously combusts after the spark plug has been set off but has not completed its burn? the reason why im asking is because in Supercharged! by corky bell, he talks about how having an intercooler will cool the compressed air going into the cylendar and make it less likely to detonate. this would lead me to believe that detonation would be the first explanation. in which case if you ran nitrous while supercharging it would lower the cylendar temperature considerably, and thus reduce chance of detonation. i hope this makes sense.
Detonation, pre-ignition, knock... it's all the same thing - the air/fuel mixture ignites before the spark plug goes off. Once the mixture is ignited, the flame front may or may not travel optimally across the combustion chamber. If it occurs due to detonation, the flame front probably doesn't propogate across the combustion chamber like it was designed to - that would require a spark plug to light the mixture. Unless someone made a messed up head with a poor spark plug location. :-)

Intercooling takes out energy from the air charge, reducing the chance of detonation.

Running nitrous reduces the temperature, effectively doing the same thing. Except when you run nitrous, you can't control the oxygen content and since you don't want to run lean, you blast as much gas in as possible, and now you raise the chance of detonation...

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