Have you ever wondered what REAL acceleration is? Some facts from the Top Fuel Dragster world....don't know the author, so it is another piece from the ether world of tha INNANETS!
Acceleration Put Into Perspective
* One Top Fuel dragster outfitted with a 500 cubic-inch Dodge Hemi engine
makes more horsepower (8,000 HP) than the first 4 rows at NASCAR's Daytona
* Under full throttle, a dragster engine will consume 11.2 gallons of nitro
methane per second; a fully loaded Boeing 747 consumes jet fuel at the same
rate but 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 lockup 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
stack s at night is raw burning hydrogen, dissociated from atmospheric water
vapor by the searing exhaust gases.
* Dual magnetos supply 44 amps to each spark plug. Which is typically the
output of an electric arc welder in each cylinder.
* Spark plug electrodes are totally consumed during a pass. After 1/2 way
thru the run, the engine is 'dieseling' from compression and the glow of the
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 enough sufficient force to blow
the cylinder heads off the block in pieces or split the block in half !!
* Dragsters reach over 300 MPH +... before you have completed reading this
* In order to exceed 300 MPH in 4.5 seconds, a dragster must accelerate an
average of over 4 G's. In order to reach 200 MPH well before reaching
half-track , at launch the acceleration approaches 8 G's.
* Top Fuel engines turn approximately 540 revolutions from light to light !
* Including the burnout, the engine must only survive 900 revolutions under
* The redline is actually quite high at 9500 RPM.
* THE BOTTOM LINE: Assuming all the equipment is paid for, the pit crew is
working for free, & NOTHING BLOWS UP, each run will cost an estimated $1,000
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....or snapping your fingers !!
The current Top Fuel dragster elapsed time record i s 4.420 seconds for the
quarter-mile (2004, Doug Kalitta R.I.P.) The top speed record is 337.58 MPH as
measured over the last 66' of the run (2005, Tony Schumacher).
Let's now put this all into perspective:
Imagine this...........You are driving a new $140,000 Lingenfelter
twin-turbo powered Corvette Z-06. Over a mile up the road, a Top Fuel
dragster is staged & r eady to 'launch' down a quarter-mile strip as you
pass. You have the advantage of a flying start. You run the 'Vette
hard, on 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 exact moment.
The dragster departs & starts after you. You keep your foot buried hard to
the floor, and suddenly you hear an incredibly brutally screaming whine that
seares and pummels your eardrums & within a mere 3 seconds the dragster
effortlessly 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....and it not only caught, but nearly blasted you off
the planet when he passed you within a mere 1320 foot long race !!!!
That my friends.....is acceleration !!!