Up to this point in my life, I’ve been rather disappointed with lasers. Despite many cartoon and science fiction projections to the contrary, lasers have yet to become an integral part of my everyday life. Sure they’re used for many medical procedures, and it can be great fun to annoy someone across the room with a laser pointer. But what if lasers suddenly became one of the key components in car engines?

All Ford Mustangs reports that the Blue Oval working to make spark plugs obsolete through the use of lasers.

Picture: Ford

Spark plugs were around for nearly 70 years before the first Ford Model T was built. It is an old, simple technology, and it is about time it were replaced. Ford is working alongside the University of Liverpool in England to develop lasers that will provide more power, fuel economy, and engine feedback than spark plugs could ever hope to attain.

Lasers offer a wide variety of benefits, primarily having to do with fuel efficiency and power. A car’s fuel economy is a main concern of many in the buying public; Ford’s laser plugs deliver a more complete burn of fuel in the combustion chamber. The laser can detect the intensity needed to completely burn the fuel, making cold starts a problem no more. A complete burn of the fuel means that you’re getting the most out of your potential energy, and power is increased as well.

The laser is also fitted with a receiver, so it can detect things such as knock and tell the ECU to deliver more fuel or less timing. Lasers can even detect the type of fuel being used. With more vehicles going Flex Fuel, and experiments being done with mixing gasoline and diesel (also reportedly delivering more efficiency and power) this could mean in the future we’ll have your choice of fuels. I guess lasers might actually have an everyday use after all.

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