An Experimental Study of Combustion Initiation and development in an Optical HCCI Engine 2005-01-2129
The major characteristics of the combustion in Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) engines, irrespective of the technological strategy used to enable the ‘controlled auto-ignition’, are that the mixture of fuel and air is preferably premixed and largely homogeneous. Ignition tends to take place simultaneously at multiple points and there is no bulk flame propagation as in conventional spark-ignition (SI) engines. This paper presents an experimental study of flame development in an optical engine operating in HCCI combustion mode. High resolution and high-speed charge coupled device (CCD) cameras were used to take images of the flame during the combustion process. Fuels include gasoline, natural gas (NG) and hydrogen addition to NG all at stoichiometric conditions, permitting the investigation of combustion development for each fuel. The flame imaging data was supplemented by simultaneously recorded in-cylinder pressure data. This was used for the calculation of mass fraction burned (mfb) and its comparison with synchronous flame development. Correlations of flame area and mfb are presented in addition to a discussion on the initiation centres and combustion structures observed with HCCI combustion.