Nano/micro Fuels

Engine Based Burning Of Microencapsulated Fuel

The recently developed technology of microencapsulation and nanoencapsulation allows emulsion of liquid fuel, such as benzene, diesel fuel, sunflower oil and other water non-mixable hydrocarbons of different sort. Practically, size of emulsion droplet is about 0.5-20 microns and can be optimized. Essential advantage of this encapsulation technology is coating of each emulsion drop with composite nanoparticle polymeric shell. Metallic nanoparticles of silver or gold and carbon nanotubes are susceptible to laser irradiation and produce enough heat locally to ignite fuel droplets. The laser initializes burning of fuel in a controllable way. Quantity of fuel and release of energy are determined by injection of capsules upon each circle of working piston. An oxidizer such as oxygen or even water soluble oxidizers must be supplied together with fuel capsules for continuous burning of fuel. Laser beam is conducted via optical waveguide to chamber receiving fuel droplets. Laser impulse is synchronized with the up position of piston when volume is minimized and new portion of fuel capsules is added. Burning of fuel droplets is done once in the circle of piston engine. Expanding piston produces the work. Products of burning fuel are exhausted and piston returns to down position. As shown in preliminary data, a wide range of fuel can be encapsulated and burned via laser induced ignition in the presence of an oxidizer. Laser ignition of encapsulated fuel droplets decrease combustion and exhaust waste.
Practically, compression ratio for fuel is increased drastically, since fuel is added in a liquid encapsulated form and starts to burn only from an externally synchronized laser impulse. Minimum volume of engine chamber does not play a role in ignition

This method of encapsulating fuel is primarily used towards more efficient energy creation in engines, turbines, heaters, furnaces, and others. Through the combined use of microcapsules and laser activation combustion is more effective.
The process requires significantly less laser energy to initiate burning with microcapsules. The laser activates a few capsules and ignites the fuel inside rather than igniting the entire amount of fuel in the combustion chamber. Within an internal combustion engine, the laser can be more precisely timed electronically rather than mechanically to increase engine lifespan, reduce fuel consumption, and create cleaner exhaust. Doing this does not require idling when the engine is not in use. Ignition can take place at any position of the piston to start the engine instantly. Being able to stop the engine rather than keep it idle increases fuel efficiency in gas and diesel engines.
Furthermore, encapsulation allows for a significantly higher compression ratio. Fuel can be encapsulated in such a way as to prevent ignition through pressure. Compression ratio’s significantly higher than 25:1 can be achieved. Through encapsulation of fuel, both diesel and gasoline can perform in the same way as they are both ignited only when the capsules are ruptured by laser irradiation. Additionally, diesel fuel can be used without laser irradiation by using microcapsules designed to rupture at a specific compression ratio to ignite the fuel through pressure.
With the increase in efficiency, smaller fuel tanks are possible to yield the same energy production. By adding an oxidizer to the combustion chamber, the engine is able to operate in oxygen free environments such as underwater. All oil or gas based fuels can be encapsulated and used in a single engine without the need for modification. Gasolines such as petroleum diesel, autogas (liquified petroleum gas), compressed natural gas, and jet fuel; Coal based fuels such as methanol; heating oils; and Biofuels like biobutanol, biodiesel, bioethanol, biomethanol, biogas, ethanol, peanut oil, and other vegoils can all be encapusalted. This method of encapsulation can also be used for jet fuels necessary to remain stable up to 900 degrees Fahrenheit.

This method is significantly safer and better for the environment than non-encapsulated fuels. During transportation, storage, and distribution encapsulated fuels are less prone to accidental combustion and the fuel creates no harmful fumes due to evaporation. In case of spills into bodies of water or the ground it has fewer consequences to the environment as the encapsulation makes the fuel inactive and thus reduces the cost of decontamination. Cleaner burning and efficiency is also better for the environment.