May 25, 2021

The invention and inventor of Otto cycle | Nicholaus Otto

 Nicholaus August Otto (June 10, 1832 - 26 January 1891) was a German engineer who developed the Four-stroke Internal Combustion engine, which provided the first practical alternative to the steam engine power source. Nikolaus Otto built his first gasoline-powered engine in 1861

Invention of Internal combustion Engine | Otto Engine | Otto cycle

At that time gas was expensive. The engine was relatively inefficient and required a lot of water for cooling purposes. Yet Nicholaus Otto saw potential in this concept.

Three years later Nicholaus formed a partnership with German Industrialist Eugen Langen which gave this experiment a boost. They together developed an improvised engine that was selected in the Paris Expo of 1867 and won a gold medal for this invention.

    What is the Otto cycle?

    The Otto engine is a combustion engine and it is considered to be a technological milestone of the human sword, it was named after its inventor Nicholaus August otto. Otto engines are used in motorcycles, cars, and the automotive industry.

    How Otto cycle was named?

    In 1876, Nicholaus Otto build an Internal Combustion engine utilizing the four-stroke cycle. But unfortunately, the four-stroke cycle was patented in 1862 by the French engineer Alphonse Beau de Rochas. Since Otto was the first to build an engine based on this principle, it is commonly known as the Otto cycle.

    About Otto engines

    Because of its reliability, efficiency, and its relation to quietness, the Otto engine was an immediate success. More than 30,000 of them were built during the next 10 years. But in 1886 Otto's patent was officially canceled when Beau de Rochas' earlier patent was brought to light.

    So now we know that the Otto cycle is the ideal cycle for internal combustion engines more specifically gasoline engines there is a need for us to better understand the four-stroke Otto engine.

    How does the Otto cycle work?

    The proposed Otto engine is composed of a piston that moves up and down in a cylinder. 

    The highest point the Piston can reach is called the Top dead center, whereas the lowest point it can reach is called the Bottom dead center. 

    The volume between both points is called engine displacement. The pistons connected to the crankshaft through the connecting rod the crankshaft transmit the rotational movement to the gearbox and consequently drive the wheel of a car or motorcycle.

    Two camshafts are installed on the top of the cylinder which controls the intake and exhaust valve the camshaft is connected to the crankshaft through a belt more than not the crankshaft to the camshaft gear ratio is 2 to 1 which means that for every two revolutions of the crankshaft, the camshaft will rotate only once. 

    How does the Four-Stroke engine works?

    An Otto engine has a spark plug that uses an electric spark to ignite the fuel charge. A four-stroke otto engine is an internal combustion engine in which the piston completes four separate strokes.

    The four stages of the otto cycle are as follows:

    Four stroke Otto cycle | how Otto cycles works

    First stroke

    The first stroke is called the intake stroke where the intake valve is opened by the rotating cam, and the air-fuel mixture is sucked into the cylinder.

    Second stroke

    The second stroke is the compression stroke, the intake valve is closed and the air-fuel mixture is compressed to a higher degree by the piston, the higher the compression ratio the more mechanical energy the engine can squeeze from the air-fuel mixture, the higher compression ratios, however, make self-ignition more likely.

    Third stroke

    The third stroke is the power stroke because this is the process where power is produced, the air-fuel mixture explodes the force created by the explosion causes the piston to move down.

    Fourth stroke

    The fourth stroke is the axial stroke. In this stage, the gases remaining in the cylinder are removed from the cylinder through an exhaust valve. The crankshaft transmits rotational movement to the gearbox and the driver can drive often. 

    Through this four-stage cycle, the engine uses a series of small explosions to convert fuel into energy.


    These designs of the Otto cycle have become the basis for most other internal combustion engines.

    The engines of today feature more than one cylinder to power transformer motorcycles to increase speed and smoothness.

    You Might Also Like


    comment down what do you think?