The actual speed of sound in the exhaust medium of an engine plays an extensive role in the noise attenuation characteristics of the engine’s muffler system. For 2-stroke engine applications, the speed of sound in the exhaust gas also greatly affects how the expansion chamber is tuned to maintain maximum power output. The combustion process in an engine creates exhaust gases that differ from the composition of atmospheric air. This difference in chemical composition and humidity content yield a different density and ratio of specific heats. These ultimately yield different sound speeds in the exhaust gases compared to atmospheric air. This paper performs a full chemical analysis of the combustion process in an internal combustion gasoline engine to yield the chemical composition of the of the exhaust gases. An algorithm is written to calculate the speed of sound in the exhaust stream. The inputs of the algorithm include measurements of temperature, pressure, and relative humidity of the ambient intake air, specification of the gasoline/ethanol fuel blend, and a direct measurement of the exhaust gas temperature. Comparisons are made between sound speed approximation calculations based on air to calculations obtained by the algorithm.

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