3 Types of Super Chargers
Are you interested in a car with a super charger? If you are, you should be aware of the types of superchargers that currently exist, and their purposes, advantages, and disadvantages.
Superchargers force more oxygen into a car's engine, which allows more fuel to be used in each cycle. The result is a more powerful engine that can output more energy. Strictly defined, superchargers are powered by the engine itself directly, as opposed to by the exhaust from the engine.
Type #1 - Roots
The roots type supercharger is by far the oldest, dating back to before the 20th century. However, it has been continuously updated since it was first invented and used, and has managed to hold its own in modern times in several areas.
Originally, roots type superchargers push extra oxygen into engines by using meshed-lobe rotors with two lobes. These rotors rotate in opposite directions, trapping air in pockets and forcing it from the inlet to the compressor chamber, where it is compressed and moved into the engine. Modern designs use the same basic principal, but usually use rotors with three or even four lobes, as well as other upgrades that can improve efficiency in dramatic ways.
Roots type superchargers have several advantages. They are simple, have few parts, and as a result are reliable and require comparatively few repairs. They are also quite good at adding power to an engine even at low RPM. This makes roots type superchargers a good choice for engines that operate at a low RPM, which is where roots type superchargers are routinely used.
Type #2 - Screw
The screw type supercharger works in a similar way to the roots type supercharger. Screw type superchargers work by using two counter rotating screws, rather than rotors. While this seems similar enough to a roots type supercharger, it actually offers very different advantages and disadvantages.
Screw type superchargers are very good at moving air — they lose very little of it due to their design. Additionally, they can compress air as they move it using their screws. However, these advantages are not without cost. Screw type superchargers are significantly less powerful before reaching high RPM — and if used on an engine that never reaches high RPM, they will not ever achieve their potential.
Type #3 - Centrifugal
Centrifugal superchargers are similar to many pumps or fans. They pull air through an intake using an impeller, which collects air and forces it out into a progressively smaller area, compressing it and leading to an engine, where it is put to work.
Centrifugal superchargers use their special features to their advantage, but not without drawbacks. In general, they are excellent at moving a large volume of air. As a result of this, they are among the most efficient and effective superchargers. Centrifugal superchargers have comparatively few moving parts. As a result of this, they are quite reliable, requiring little maintenance. They also generate much less heat than their more complicated equivalents. Unfortunately, they put a limited amount of pressure on this air, unlike the other kinds of superchargers. They also perform less effectively at lower RPM.