Merlin Engine Cylinders
This is a bank of six cylinders from a Merlin engine. Air and fuel are burnt inside the cylinders to move the pistons up and down. A crankshaft converts the up-and down-motion of the pistons into a round-and-round motion, turning a shaft connected to the propeller.
The ‘four-stroke’ cycle:
- The piston moves to the bottom of the cylinder. The exhaust valves close and the inlet valves open, letting in a mixture of air and fuel.
- All the valves close. The piston moves back up and compresses the air and fuel at the top of the cylinder.
- The sparkplug ignites the compressed air and fuel. The explosive force pushes the piston down. This is the power stroke.
- The exhaust valves open. The piston moves up and pushes out the exhaust gases, The cycle can now begin again.
More resources on the powerhouse behind the Spitfire.
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