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|Abstract:||A spark plug is disclosed having at least one main electrode and at least one secondary electrode. The gaps associated with the secondary electrodes are between one third and two thirds the optimum gap distance. Resistors associated with the secondary electrodes control the current flow and therefore the voltage on the electrodes.|
|Inventor(s):||Cleeves; James M. (Redwood City, CA)|
|Filing Date:||Sep 15, 2003|
|Claims:||1. A spark plug having a plurality of electrodes each connected in series with a resistor, the resistors having low enough resistance such that pre-ionization current flows through its respective electrode without significantly changing a voltage applied to the electrode and resistor, the resistance being high enough that the voltage change on the electrode is substantial once a gap defined by the electrode is ionized wherein the plurality of electrodes are arranged to form a series of gaps, the size of each gap being adjusted to facilitate ionization current flow to occur one after the other between the series of gaps, the gaps being one-third to two-thirds an optimum gap distance for a single gap. |
2. A spark plug comprising: a first and a second main electrode, spaced-apart by a distance N, each electrode for receiving a different potential; and a plurality of secondary electrodes, disposed between the main electrodes, each having a gap between one another and the main electrodes, each gap being different from one another, the sum of the gaps being equal to the distance N, each gap having a gap distance between one-third to two-thirds the optimum gap distance for a single gap.
3. The spark plug defined by claim 2, wherein one of the main electrodes is disposed through the center of the spark plug, and wherein the resistors are connected between the center of the spark plug and each of the secondary electrodes.
4. The spark plug defined by claim 2, wherein one of the main electrodes comprises an outer threaded cylindrical housing, and wherein the resistors are connected between each of the secondary electrodes and the outer member.
5. A spark plug comprising: a main electrode; a plurality of secondary electrodes, each having a gap from one another, with a first of the secondary electrodes having a first gap with the main electrode where all the gaps are between one-third to two-thirds an optimum gap distance for a single gap; and a plurality of resistors each coupled between a common node and one of the secondary electrodes.
6. The spark plug defined by claim 5, wherein the main electrode is part of an outer cylindrical housing.
7. The spark plug defined by claim 6, wherein the secondary electrodes are mounted on a generally coplanar surface.
8. The spark plug defined by claim 7, wherein the secondary electrodes are linearly aligned.
9. The spark plug defined by claim 5, wherein the main electrode is coupled to a ground potential, and the common node is coupled to a high potential.
10. The spark plug defined by claim 9, wherein each of the gaps is different from one another.
11. The spark plug defined by claim 10, wherein the secondary electrodes are arranged in a linear configuration.
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