Supersonic Nozzles for Better Fuel Atomization

Paul Trame, BSE’65, MSE’67., Senior Development Engineer

After being laid off from Williams International (builder of the Cruise Missile, and small Jet Engines) when we lost several follow-on programs with Russia’s collapse in 1991, I found a job at Ford Motor Company’s Advanced V-Engine group.One of the things they were working on was better fuel atomization for cleaner emissions at start-up. I was able to use my knowledge of supersonic nozzles to design a small (.050 inch throat) nozzle that provided 20 to 40 micron particles—much better than the 200 micron spray from the fuel injectors.