Engineering thermodynamics research often focuses on methods of
improving the efficiency of gasoline engines. Two students have recently
investigated engineering thermodynamics.
Mike Devenuto (2007) investigated
acoustical resonance in a turbo jet. He inserted a butterfly valve, which
restricted the flow of air to only one direction. The flow produced a
thrust that depended on the air/fuel mixture.
Ryan McCullough (2007) performed a thermodynamic analysis of an Otto
cycle powered by alcohol. He obtained a graph of pressure versus cylinder
volume for the cycle. He also determined the relation of revolutions per
minute on the engine's torque.