Compression Ignition Delay (Physical + Chemical) of Dimethyl Ether - An Alternative Fuel for Compression-Ignition Engines 2003-01-0759
Compression ignition delay of DME is studied theoretically. Physical phenomena that would influence the ignition delay, characteristics of the DME spray and evaporation of DME droplets in the spray, are analyzed. It is found that the short ignition delay of DME revealed in engine tests is due largely to the short physical delay of DME: The evaporation rate of DME droplets is about twice that of diesel-fuel droplets at the same cylinder condition and, the stoichiometric mixture in a DME spray can be established immediately - in comparison, the stoichiometric mixture in a diesel-fuel spray cannot be established before temperatures of diesel-fuel droplets become higher than 225 °C. The high droplet evaporation rate of DME is also responsible for the irregular boundary and tip of the DME spray as observed by many investigators. On the basis of experimental data reported in the literature, cetane number of DME is estimated to be 68. A correlation is developed in this study for compression ignition delay of DME as a function of pressure and temperature, which may be applied in modeling of the DME engine combustion.