Lasers could replace spark plugs

Fun with an Argon-ion and a He-Ne laser. Most ...Image via Wikipedia
BBC:

Car engines could soon be fired by lasers instead of spark plugs, researchers say.

A team at the Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics will report on 1 May that they have designed lasers that could ignite the fuel/air mixture in combustion engines.

The approach would increase efficiency of engines, and reduce their pollution, by igniting more of the mixture.

...

A team from Romania and Japan has now demonstrated a system that can focus two or three laser beams into an engine's cylinders at variable depths.

That increases the completeness of combustion and neatly avoids the issue of degradation with time.

...
There is more.

This looks like a good idea if they can make it work. It should both improve efficiency and the life of the devices used to spark combustion.
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