Browse Publications Technical Papers 2018-01-1142

Experimental and Numerical Analysis of Diluted Combustion in a Direct Injection CNG Engine Featuring Post- Euro-VI Fuel Consumption Targets 2018-01-1142

The present paper is concerned with part of the work performed by Renault, IFPEN and Politecnico di Torino within a research project founded by the European Commission. The project has been focused on the development of a dedicated CNG engine featuring a 25% decrease in fuel consumption with respect to an equivalent Diesel engine with the same performance targets. To that end, different technologies were implemented and optimized in the engine, namely, direct injection, variable valve timing, LP EGR with advanced turbocharging, and diluted combustion. With specific reference to diluted combustion, it is rather well established for gasoline engines whereas it still poses several critical issues for CNG ones, mainly due to the lower exhaust temperatures. Moreover, dilution is accompanied by a decrease in the laminar burning speed of the unburned mixture and this generally leads to a detriment in combustion efficiency and stability. The optimization of in-cylinder turbulence plays a fundamental role in compensating this trend.
The present paper is specifically focused on the characterization of the diluted combustion in the direct injection engine. The results of an experimental activity have been presented, aimed at characterizing the in-cylinder combustion process and the exhaust temperatures at 2000 rpm and variable load, both without dilution and with 20% of external EGR. At the same time, a 3-D numerical model for the in-cylinder turbulence and combustion simulation has been developed in Converge. The model embeds a user-specified laminar-flame speed submodel, which was derived from a 1-D combustion simulation model with detailed chemistry. The model has been calibrated against experimental data and then used to characterize the heat release dependence on the dilution. The experimental activity has evidenced the potential of EGR to increase the engine efficiency, by allowing to increase the boost level at full load and by reducing pumping losses at partial load. As far as the maximum allowed EGR rate is concerned, the CFD activity showed that the limit can be detected on the basis of a threshold value of the MFB0-50 interval. At 2000 rpm and medium load the maximum EGR rate ranged around 35% and showed an increasing trend versus load. It also demonstrated a decreasing trend against the engine speed.


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