Rudolf Christian Karl Diesel - March 18, 1858

March 18, 1858, Paris, France, a German couple had a baby boy and they named him 
Rudolf Christian Karl Diesel.  On February 28, 1892 Imperial German Patent #67207 
was issued for an internal combustion engine using compression ignition.  

On Feburary 17, 1897 a 250mm x 400mm engine produced 13.1kw of power during a 
successful test.  Even this early prototype was 26.2% efficient!  This was a 
significant milestone in engine technology. During that time a steam engine was 
at best about 18% efficient!  On July 16, 1895 US Patent #542,846 was issued on 
the Diesel Engine.  In spite of it's efficiency and potential Rudolf and his 
business enterprise was in serious financial straits and on September 29, 1913  
while crossing the English Channel Rudolf threw himself into the frigid waters.  
What is tragic is that with the onset of World War I his invention became
immensly popular and continues to be popular even today.

update - February 2011 *

	over 40% efficiency with Diesel.  can be made to run other fuels as well... 

current gasoline engines are at best around 18-20%, 

DID YOU REALIZE THAT Rudolf Diesel's PROTOTYPE was 26.2% efficient?  Modern fuel injected gasoline engines 
have not achieved this yet!  This is why the rest of the world runs on Diesel and idiotic and ignorant
Americans pollute and waste with gasoline instead of using a more environment friendly Diesel fuel, which
as any one who lets a Diesel car sit too long learns that it is biodegradeable... :)  

Know that current Diesel engines are around 30-40% efficient.

	The most efficient type, direct injection Diesels, are able to reach an efficiency of about 40% 
in the engine speed range of idle to about 1,800 rpm. Beyond this speed, efficiency begins to decline due 
to air pumping losses within the engine.  (so that's why my TDI will get over 40mpg in town if I keep the rpms down... :) *
* - links not active, not maintained... copy and paste into browser
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