Simon Longdill has a passion for engines.
This passion is the driving force behind a research project he is doing for Buckley Systems Ltd that is poised to
deliver an innovative fuel injection system for two-stroke engines. The research centres on developing a sensor that can
control the fuel flow of a two-stroke engine by being able to "read" the air-fuel ratio inside the engine.
Previous attempts to implement fuel injection systems on high performance two-stroke engines have failed because of the
systems' inability to respond to sudden changes in the engine's fuel requirements. Testing over more than two years by
Mr Longdill indicates that this can be overcome by measuring the air-fuel ratio of each combustion cycle.
"We can use a fibre-optic cable to look down into the engine and then electronically read the colour of the flame, which
is strongly related to the air-fuel ratio," Mr Longdill says. "Once we know the air-fuel ratio that is burning in the
cylinder during the combustion process, we can control it by using an electric fuel injection that alters the fuel
Mr Longdill has now finalised the test measurement system, with encouraging results from the test engine. "I am very
excited about this development," he says.
Mr Longdill is a graduate of the University of Auckland's Engineering School and is undertaking the research project as
part of his study towards a PhD. His project was supported by the Technology for Industry Fellowship scheme of the
Foundation for Research, Science and Technology. The scheme gives tertiary students an opportunity to work with
He approached Buckley Systems - a company specialising in manufacturing ion beam lines for the production of silicon
chips - about some project work. The idea of a two-stroke sensor came out of their discussions because Buckley was
planning to run a fuel injection system on its New Zealand-made 500 GP racing bikes.
It is expected that Mr Longdill's electronic device will help maximise engine efficiency and performance, meaning lower
fuel consumption, higher output and reduced operating costs.
Buckley research and development engineer Wayne Wright says the device is an industry first and proves the value of
academia working within an R structure, supported by government through Technology New Zealand. "Simon's innovative approach has far-reaching
ramifications within the automotive world, with great opportunity for New Zealand-based manufacture of complete systems
and/or licensing agreements with engine design teams," Mr Wright says.
Contact: * Wayne Wright, Buckley Systems Ltd, Ph:(09) 573-2214. Email firstname.lastname@example.org * Simon Longdill,
University of Auckland, School of Engineering. Ph: (09) 373-7599 Extn 7254. Email: email@example.com * Nigel
Metge, Technology New Zealand at the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology (Auckland Office), (09) 912-6730,
or 021 454-095. Website: www.technz.co.nz
Prepared on behalf of the Foundation for Research, Science and Technology by ID Communications. Contact: Ian Carson (04)
477-2525. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org