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Jackson Larkin

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Major: Mechanical Engineering

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Accumulator & Cooling Lead

As Powertrain Lead, I’m responsible for extracting as much power from our engine as possible and sending it to the wheels as efficiently as possible. There are 3 ways to optimize an engine; the air, the spark, and the fuel. 

 

Optimizing air is the simplest conceptually, but the hardest to apply. It consists of creating the max airflow possible through the intake and exhaust and dispersing air evenly to all 4 cylinders. Optimizing the fuel is the easiest, as this can be directly controlled by the ECU in the car the data is easy to collect.  When combustion occurs there is an optimum air-to-fuel ratio to achieve maximum power. The goal of optimizing fuel is to ensure that this proper air-to-fuel ratio occurs at all RPMs and throttle positions.

Optimizing spark changes when the spark plugs ignite to ensure that combustion happens at an optimal time in the engine cycle. My other responsibilities include ensuring that the engine is consistently in racing condition, creating testing plans to validate tuning changes, and working with other systems to ensure that we can get peak performance from our car.

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