Acceleration Defined

Acceleration Defined

DEFINITION OF ACCELERATION (copied in part from a CorvetteForum.com post)

One top fuel dragster 500 cubic inch Hemi engine makes more horsepower than the first 4 rows of stock cars at the Daytona 500.

It takes just 15/100ths of a second for all 8000+ horsepower of an NHRA Top Fuel dragster engine to reach the rear wheels.

Under full throttle, a dragster engine consumes 1-1/2 gallons of nitromethane per second; a fully loaded 747 consumes jet fuel at the same rate with 25% less energy being produced. (note: Nitro M weights 10# per gal vs about 6# for gasoline)

A stock Z06 V8 engine cannot produce enough power to drive the dragster's supercharger.

With 3,000 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 lock at full throttle.

At the stoichiometric (stoichiometry: methodology and technology by which quantities of reactants and products in chemical reactions are determined) 1.7:1 air/fuel mixture of nitro methane, the flame front temperature measures 7,050 deg 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. This is the output of an arc welder in each cylinder.

Spark plug electrodes are totally consumed during a pass. After halfway, the engine is dieseling from compression, plus the glow of exhaust valves at 1,400 deg 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 sufficient force to blow cylinder heads off the block in pieces or split the block in half.

In order to exceed 300 mph in 4. 5 seconds, dragsters must accelerate an average of over 4G's. In order to reach 200 mph (well before half-track), the launch acceleration approaches 8G's.

Dragsters reach over 300 miles per hour before you have completed reading this sentence.

Top fuel engines turn approximately 540 revolutions from light to light! Including the burnout, the engine must only survive 900 revolutions under load.

The redline is actually quite high at 9,500 rpm.

Assuming all the equipment is paid off, the crew worked for free, and for once NOTHING BLOWS UP, each run costs an estimate $1,000.00 per second. That is $60,000 per minute. That is $3,600,000 dollars per hour.

The current top fuel dragster elapsed time record is 4.428 seconds for the quarter mile (11/12/06, Tony Schumacher, at Pomona , CA ).. The top speed record is 336.15 mph as measured over the last 66' of the run (05/25/05 Tony Schumacher, at Hebron , OH ).

Putting all of this into perspective:
If you are driving the average $140,000 Lingenfelter 'twin-turbo' powered Corvette Z06. Over a mile up the road, a top fuel dragster is staged and ready to launch down a quarter mile strip as you pass. You have the advantage of a flying start. You run the 'Vette hard up through the gears and blast across the starting line and pass the dragster at an honest 200 mph. The 'tree' goes green for both of you at that moment. The dragster launches and starts after you. You keep your foot down hard, but you hear an incredibly brutal whine that sears your eardrums and within 3 seconds, the dragster catches and 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 not only caught, but nearly blasted you off the road when he passed you within a mere 1,320 foot long race course.

and that my friend, is ACCELERATION ...

ANYTHING WORTH DOING, IS WORTH DOING TO EXCESS!!!

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9 Comments

5 years 23 weeks ago, 2:31 PM

ivantank

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weee LOOK AT ME......

DRIVING IN A STRAIGHT LINE WEEEEE!!!

I have reasons for the things I do, just don't expect them to be reasonable
5 years 23 weeks ago, 2:48 PM

samD

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Bud, you wanna try it?

I can get you a ride at Frank Hawley's...
Better wear your Depends, cause you gonna need 'em.

5 years 23 weeks ago, 2:55 PM

greg az

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I had no idea on some of these specs. 8K hp, the blower can't be driven by a hipower V8, 3000CFM, think about that 3K cubic feet is a block almost a mile square. 44 amps per plug. 8G's. I'm one of the "usta have a set" crowd, but don't know if i ever had the huevoes to pull the triger on one of those

a man has to hold his word, hold his beliefs, and hold a good sight picture.
5 years 23 weeks ago, 4:30 PM

luckybychoice

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i want a ride

thats a great article,i'm ready to go racing.

i tried being reasonable,i didn't like it, NRA LIFE MEMBER,USMC VETERAN
5 years 23 weeks ago, 5:47 PM

Anonymous

a few corrections

the engine size is 520 c.i.d.
redline is a limited 8,250 RPM
the distance has been reduced to 1000 feet

5 years 23 weeks ago, 6:59 PM

samD

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about. It was just a neat article.

5 years 23 weeks ago, 7:35 PM

ivantank

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drag racing fans...you know the shit us nascar fans take all the time..although we turned runaway to our side now

I have reasons for the things I do, just don't expect them to be reasonable
5 years 23 weeks ago, 7:37 PM

samD

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What up Bud?

5 years 23 weeks ago, 7:40 PM

Schuyler

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He was racing a 'normal' one and the guy in the gas rig held up a hot dog on a stick. The announcer said, well,, if you're going to toast that dog, that means you must be planning on being BEHIND him. Driver gives the booth the finger. Announcer also says, "You guys that are behind the line had better get your butts out of there." We didn't listen, and when the jet took off, all hell broke loose as it scattered rocks the size of beer cans at us. All we could do was duck & cover and by the time we could look up the race was over. The gasser won because the jet had jumped the gun.

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." - Edmund Burke
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