What is a Two Stroke Engine?

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The creation of the engine was a big step in powering a lot of what we need to do. The engine has greatly impacted the way we power our day to day lives. Over the years, engines have gradually evolved and today we have the four stroke internal combustion engine as well as the diesel engine as the most popular types of engines. These are however not the only engine types that we have today as we also have very many two stroke engines as well as a few remaining steam engines. The one thing that all these engines have in common is that they need some form of fuel to operate. Their design, working and suitable use however differ as per the advantages presented by each type of engine.

The two stroke engine’s invention is credited to a Scott’s man by the name Dugald Clerk, who was the first to patent the design in 1881. His design was very basic and there were two notable improvements to it from Joseph Day and Fredrick Cock. Over the years there have been various adjustments and improvements to the engine in order to make it more efficient, user and environmentally friendly. From this original design we currently have a number of two stroke engine types that include the loop scavenged engine, piston controlled inlet port engine, uniflow scavenged engine, reed inlet valve engine, stepped piston engine, rotary inlet valve engine and the cross flow scavenged engine.

The two stroke engine is basically an engine that operates one piston which completes the internal combustion process in a single revolution. This is achieved when the piston goes through the up stroke and down stroke and is also where it gets its name from. This is unlike the four stroke engine which requires two up stroke and two down stroke movements to complete the internal combustion process. Two stroke engines are light weight, simple constructions that have the capacity to give high power. This high power is attributed to the fact that they fire in every revolution. Other engines normally fire once in every other revolution. Another important feature of the two stroke engine is that it does not have to be upright to operate. This gives it a significant advantage over other kinds of engines which have to be in an upright position to operate.

Two stroke engines are not very popular in heavy commercial use due to the fact that they do a lot of polluting. This is because in the two stroke engine fuel, oil and air are all burnt together in the combustion chamber. However since they give high specific power and are also able to work in any position, they have a wide variety of uses. Light weight devices such as chainsaws and lawn mowers normally use a two stroke engine. They are also used in large applications where weight is not a concern such as in boat and ship engines. In the past these engines were used in the motor vehicle industry though this was stopped due to concerns over pollution.

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