Effects of Gasoline Reactivity and Ethanol Content on Boosted, Premixed and Partially Stratified Low-Temperature Gasoline Combustion (LTGC) 2015-01-0813
Low-temperature gasoline combustion (LTGC), based on the compression ignition of a premixed or partially premixed dilute charge, can provide thermal efficiencies (TE) and maximum loads comparable to those of turbo-charged diesel engines, and ultra-low NOx and particulate emissions. Intake boosting is key to achieving high loads with dilute combustion, and it also enhances the fuel's autoignition reactivity, reducing the required intake heating or hot residuals. These effects have the advantages of increasing TE and charge density, allowing greater timing retard with good stability, and making the fuel ϕ- sensitive so that partial fuel stratification (PFS) can be applied for higher loads and further TE improvements. However, at high boost the autoignition reactivity enhancement can become excessive, and substantial amounts of EGR are required to prevent overly advanced combustion. Accordingly, an experimental investigation has been conducted to determine how the tradeoff between the effects of intake boost varies with fuel-type and its impact on load range and TE. Five fuels are investigated: a conventional AKI=87 petroleum-based gasoline (E0), and blends of 10 and 20% ethanol with this gasoline to reduce its reactivity enhancement with boost (E10 and E20). A second zero-ethanol gasoline with AKI=93 (matching that of E20) was also investigated (CF-E0), and some neat ethanol data are also reported.
Results show that ethanol content has little effect on LTGC autoignition reactivity for naturally aspirated operation, but it produces a large effect for boosted operation, with the reactivity enhancement with boost being reduced by an amount that correlates with ethanol content. In contrast, CFE0 showed a reactivity enhancement with boost similar to E0. Related to this autoignition enhancement, the effect of fuel-type on the increase in ITHR with boost was also investigated since it correlates with the ability to retard CA50 with good stability for higher loads without knock and to apply PFS effectively. The study showed that by adding ethanol, less EGR is required with boost, leaving more oxygen available for combustion. As a result, the high-load limit could be increased from 16.3 to 18.1 to 20.0 bar IMEPg for E0, E10, and E20, respectively, and to 17.7 bar for the high-AKI gasoline. TE vs. load curves for the various fuels at typical boosted conditions are also presented and discussed. At boosted conditions, PFS was found to be very effective for increasing the TE, with the peak TE increasing from 47.8% for premixed fueling to 48.4% with PFS, and TE improvements up to 2.8 %-units were achieved at higher loads.