A method for determining the octane rating of gasoline samples by observing corresponding acoustic resonances therein. A direct correlation between the octane rating of gasoline and the frequency of corresponding acoustic resonances therein has been experimentally observed. Therefore, the octane rating of a gasoline sample can be directly determined through speed of sound measurements instead of by the cumbersome process of quantifying the knocking quality of the gasoline. Various receptacle geometries and construction materials may be employed. Moreover, it is anticipated that the measurements can be performed on flowing samples in pipes, thereby rendering the present method useful in refineries and distilleries.
The present invention relates generally to the measurement of octane ratings in samples of gasoline and, more particularly, to the observation of corresponding acoustic resonant frequencies in a sample thereof which may be related to the octane rating of the gasoline therein. This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. W-7405-ENG-36 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.