Acceleration Explained
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  1. #1
    JBN
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    Default Acceleration Explained

    A most interesting article...

    Acceleration Explained-dragster-1.jpg
    * One Top Fuel dragster outfitted with a 500 cubic-inch replica Dodge (actually Keith Black, etc) Hemi engine makes more horsepower (8,000 HP) than the first 4 rows of cars at NASCAR's Daytona 500.

    * Under full throttle, a dragster engine will consume 11.2 gallons of nitro methane per second; a fully loaded Boeing 747 consumes jet fuel at the same rate but with 25% less energy being produced.

    * A stock Dodge Hemi V8 engine cannot produce enough power to merely drive the dragster's supercharger.

    * With 3000 CFM of air being rammed in by the supercharger on overdrive, the fuel mixture is compressed into a near-solid form before ignition. Cylinders run on the verge of hydraulic lockup at full throttle.

    * At the stoichio metric 1.7:1 air/fuel mixture for nitro methane the flame front temperature measures 7050 degrees F.

    * Nitro methane burns yellow. The spectacular white flame seen above the stacks at night is raw burning hydrogen, dissociated from atmospheric water vapor by the searing exhaust gases.

    * Dual magnetos supply 44 amps to each spark plug. Which is typically the output of an electric arc welder in each cylinder.

    * Spark plug electrodes are totally consumed during a pass. After 1/2 way thru the run, the engine is 'dieseling' from compression and the glow of the exhaust valves at 1400 degrees F. The engine can only be shut down by cutting the fuel flow.

    * If spark momentarily fails early in the run, unburned nitro builds up in the affected cylinders and then explodes with enough sufficient force to blow the cylinder heads off the block in pieces or split the block in half !!

    * Dragsters reach over 300 MPH +... before you have completed reading this sentence.

    * In order to exceed 300 MPH in 4.5 seconds, a dragster must accelerate an average of over 4 G's. In order to reach 200 MPH well before reaching half-track, at launch the acceleration approaches 8 G's.

    * Top Fuel engines turn approximately 540 revolutions from light to light!

    Acceleration Explained-dragster-2.jpg

    * Including the burnout, the engine must only survive 900 revolutions under load.

    * The redline is actually quite high at 9500 RPM.

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    * THE BOTTOM LINE: Assuming all the equipment is paid for, the pit crew is working for free, & NOTHING BLOWS UP, each run will cost an estimated $1,000 per second.

    0 to 100 MPH in .8 seconds (the first 60 feet of t he run)
    0 to 200 MPH in 2.2 seconds (the first 350 feet of the run)
    6 g-forces at the starting line (nothing accelerates faster on land)
    6 negative g-forces upon deployment of twin 'chutes at 300 MPH

    An NHRA Top Fuel Dragster accelerates quicker than any other land vehicle on earth . . quicker than a jet fighter plane . . . quicker than the space shuttle....or snapping your fingers !!

    The current Top Fuel dragster elapsed time record is 4.420 seconds for the quarter-mile (2004, Doug Kalitta). The top speed record is 337.58 MPH as measured over the last 66' of the run (2005, Tony Schumacher).

    Let's now put this all into perspective:

    Imagine this...........You are driving a new $140,000 Lingenfelter twin-turbo powered Corvette Z-06. Over a mile up the road, a Top Fuel dragster is staged & ready to 'launch' down a quarter-mile s trip as you pass. You have the advantage of a flying start. You run the 'Vette hard, on up through the gears and blast across the starting line & pass the dragster at an honest 200 MPH.... The 'tree' goes green for both of you at that exact moment.

    The dragster departs & starts after you. You keep your foot buried hard to the floor, and suddenly you hear an incredibly brutally screaming whine that seares and pummels your eardrums & within a mere 3 seconds the dragster effortlessly catches & passes you. He beats you to the finish line, a quarter-mile away from where you just passed him. Think about it - from a standing start, the dragster had spotted you 200 MPH.....and it not only caught, but nearly blasted you off the planet when he passed you within a mere 1320 foot long race !!!!

    That, my friends.....is acceleration.


  2. #2
    VIP Sponsor 59 Floride's Avatar
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    Nice find..
    Every day when I wake up I reach up in the darkness with my eyes shut and if I cannot feel anything that resembles a wooden lid I know it will be a good day. No lid today.

  3. #3
    Fellow Frogger! lozenge's Avatar
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    yeah, thanks a lot... my 205 Si suddenly seems even slower, in fact I'm not sure that's it's even moving...

  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Incredible stats.

    The only thing equal in awesomeness to be being buzzed by a fighter jet is being up close to a couple of Top Fuellers launching.

  5. #5
    UFO
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    Quote Originally Posted by 88lp View Post
    Incredible stats.

    The only thing equal in awesomeness to be being buzzed by a fighter jet is being up close to a couple of Top Fuellers launching.
    Oh yes.... The sound of the dragsters from the Eastern Creek strip ALL DAY during the August Shannon's Eastern Creek Classic is so much fun. Just when you think you might hear something classic and Italian roar down the main straight you get the premature emasculation club from the other side of the hill going BLAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
    Craig K
    2009 C5 HDi Exclusive

  6. #6
    Fellow Frogger!
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    You sure they were Top Fuelers? They sound less like the regular drag racing BLAAAHHH. They crackle and whine with a different ferocity and sound like they're ripping the world around them apart.

    I'm no huge drag racing fan but if one doesn't get a buzz of adrenaline from having 16000 horsepower unleashed just 10 metres away from where they're standing then the ol' adrenal gland isn't working.

  7. #7
    VIP Sponsor 59 Floride's Avatar
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    Funny Dad story from Willowbank drags a few years ago...

    I decided to enrich my 14 year old Daughter's education by taking her and her mate (also 14) to the drags as any good dad would. We sat in the paid seats on one side of the track and my daughter and her mate are scanning the cheap seats on the hill opposite with binoculars and spotted two young blokes with binoculars looking back at them.

    Five minutes later these young blokes were sitting behind us trying to crack on to my two young girls, so I had to spend the afternoon keeping an eye on the girls, and giving these two young blokes the death stare and still try to enjoy the event...lesson learned, keep 14 year old girls locked up.
    Every day when I wake up I reach up in the darkness with my eyes shut and if I cannot feel anything that resembles a wooden lid I know it will be a good day. No lid today.

  8. #8
    JBN
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    Nah. Strap them to a dragster and let the blokes run after them.

    John

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