Nitromethane

From MoparWiki
(Redirected from Top Fuel)
Jump to: navigation, search


Nitromethane is used as a fuel in racing, particularly drag racing, and commonly referred to in this context as "nitro" or "top fuel". The oxygen content of nitromethane enables it to burn with much less atmospheric oxygen in comparison to hydrocarbons such as gasoline:

4CH3NO2 + 3O2 → 4CO2 + 6H2O + 2N2

14.7 kg of air is required to burn one kilogram of gasoline, but only 1.7 kg of air for one kilogram of nitromethane. Since an engine’s cylinder can only contain a limited amount of air on each stroke, 8.7 times more nitromethane than gasoline can be burned in one stroke. Nitromethane, however, has a lower energy density: Gasoline provides about 42–44 megajoule|MJ/kg whereas nitromethane provides only 11.3 MJ/kg. This analysis indicates that nitromethane generates about 2.3 times the power of gasoline when combined with a given amount of oxygen.

A small amount of hydrazine blended in nitromethane can increase the power output even further. With nitromethane, hydrazine forms an explosive salt that is again a monopropellant. This unstable mixture poses a severe safety hazard.



Because of recent spam attacks on Mediawiki sites by the tens of thousands of spammers concerned with the length, girth and hardness of our Johnsons, we have had to temporarily disable new registrations and editing until measures can be taken to ensure there is no further vandalism of this site. We apologize for the assholes out there that don't have better things to do, and will find a work around soon. Meanwhile, there are still thousands of MoparWiki pages containing a wealth of information.