Top Fuel Drag Racing Facts
* One Top Fuel dragster 500 cubic-inch Hemi engine
makes more horsepower (8,000 HP) than the first 4 rows of cars at the Daytona 500.
* Under full throttle, a dragster engine consumes
11.2 gallons of nitro methane per second; a fully loaded 747
consumes jet fuel at the same rate with 25% less energy being produced.
* A stock Dodge Hemi V8 engine cannot produce
enough power to merely drive the dragster's supercharger.
* With 3000 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 1.7:1 air/fuel mixture for
nitro methane the flame front temperature measures 7050 degrees 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
* 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 1/2 way, the engine is dieseling from compression plus
the glow of exhaust valves at 1400 degrees 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.
* Dragsters reach over 300 MPH before you have
completed reading this sentence.
* In order to exceed 300 MPH in 4.5 seconds,
dragsters must accelerate an average of over 4 G's. In order to reach 200 MPH
well before half-track, the launch acceleration approaches 8
* 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 9500 RPM.
* THE BOTTOM LINE: Assuming all the equipment is
paid off, the crew worked for free, & for once, NOTHING BLOWS UP, each
run costs an estimated $1,000 per second.
0 to 100 MPH in .8 seconds (the first 60 feet of the run)
0 to 200 MPH in 2.2 seconds (the first 350 feet of the run)
6 g-forces at the starting line (nothing accelerates faster on land)
6 negative g-forces upon deployment of twin chutes at 300 MPH
An NHRA Top Fuel Dragster accelerates quicker than any other land vehicle on earth quicker than a jet fighter plane . . . quicker than the space shuttle.
The current Top Fuel dragster elapsed time record is
4.420 seconds for the quarter-mile (2004, Doug Kalitta). The
top speed record is 337.58 MPH as measured over the last 66'
of the run (2005, Tony Schumacher).
Putting this all into perspective:
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 & 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 & pass the
dragster at an honest 200 MPH. The 'tree' goes green for both of
you at that moment.
The dragster launches & starts after you. You keep
your foot down hard, but you hear an incredibly brutal whine that sears
your eardrums & within 3 seconds the dragster catches & 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 & not only caught, but nearly blasted you off the road
when he passed you within a mere 1320 foot long race!
That's acceleration !
Thank You .....
I have been looking for this list for quite some time. I can't remember where I read it....Drag News, National Dragster, or the like. The one I get the most resistance from is the revs per run...it's simple math, but most people miss it. The one I didn't remember, and am slightly confused over, was the stoichiometric efficiency factor. Stoichiometric efficiency of a naturally aspirated engine is 14:7:1 which I thought to be relative accross the board due to the definition of the term stoichiometric itself....(chemical reaction taken to compleation, or it's entirety.) Was that a typo, or do I need to re-read my fuel for dummys book? Any rate, I'm printing this out, laminating it and putting a copy in the trailer, and the truck...(for those after race drinkin bets) Thanks again
"For gasoline fuel, the stoichiometric air/fuel mixture is approximately 14.7 times the mass of air to fuel"
for other fuels its different. so i guess nitro is only 1.7:1
more cool facts:
At top engine speed, the exhaust gases escaping from the open headers produce about 800-1000 pounds-force of downforce. If a cylinder fails during the run, the car may pull to that side due to unequal downforce
The massive foil over and behind the rear wheels produces much more downforce, peaking at around 12,000 lbs when the car reaches a speed of about 325 mph
Chickaboom chickaboom don't ya just luv it!!!!
Tracers work both ways.
I enjoyed the facts, but:
11 gallons of fuel per second?
Say a 4-second pass~~ where is the 44 gallon fuel tank in a top fuelie?
Say 50 gallons for the purposes of math:
Say 4" bore X 4" stroke (12.56 X 4 X 8) (400 inch displacement)
400 inches X 540 rpms = 216,000 cubic inches. (total displaced during a "run")
44 gallons X 230" (cubic 'gallon' of mass) = 10120 cubic inches
10120 / 216,000 = .047" of fuel per cylinder stroke?
That doesn't seem like a lot.~~ I just don't see the 44 gallon volume of fuel being moved in 4 seconds.
boss would not like you taking it on a service call
Originally Posted by DCN289
Its variable......the motor will obviously be using more gas at 9500 rpms than at anything lower than that. Typically your motor isn't @ 9500 rpm's the entire run down the track.
Your figuring for a N/A motor....remember this thing is force feed.
You math is incorrect.
These are some nifty site for determining engine parameters...probably more than your interested in.
14.7:1 is the best ratio for "complete combustion" ie the most enviornmentally friendly. The best ratio for power was a little richer than that, but leaves behind a little unburnt gasoline.
If a car was doing 200mph, and the dragster took off at the finish line the same exact time the car got there, it would be a statistical dead heat at the 1/4 mile mark.
It would take the 200mph car 4.5 seconds to cover the 1/4 mile, which would be about the exact length of time the dragster takes to cover the 1/4 mile.
Therefore, the dragster will not catch the car in 3 seconds, but rather 4.5 seconds.
The 44 amps thing to each spark plug isn't exactly welding much of anything.
If we assume 12 volts, 44 amps about the same as a midsized car's alternator, you aren't going to weld much of anything.
Typically ignition coils put's out very high voltage, but very little amps. That's why you can get hit with 60,000 volts, from an ignition coil and not get electrocuted.
It's an interesting read, but seem's suspect.
For N/A gasoline. More like 11.5:1 for forced induction for safety or as high as 12.5:1 for high octane with water/meth injection for cooling the air stream.
Originally Posted by towdriver80
But this is for Nitro Methane so that's a different monster.
I think the fuel consumption seems to be about 1.5 gallons per second, and not the 11.2 gallons per second, from what I have been reading.
Figure out the density of the air it breathes in to complete the run. multiply time 70% because of the optimal 1.7:1 ratio for nitro methane. Convert density from lbs to gallons for nitro methane. I lost my conversion chart
Originally Posted by mikmic2
Don't need no conversion chart. Here are a few fun facts from NHRA.com
"that NHRA Top Fuel dragsters and Funny Cars use between 10 and 12 gallons of fuel for a complete pass, including the burnout, backup to the starting line, and quarter-mile run?"
"that a fuel pump for an NHRA Top Fuel dragster and Funny Car delivers 65 gallons of fuel per minute, equivalent to eight bathroom showers running at the same time?"
Doesn't look anything like the fuel consumption statistics used in this thread.