Browse Publications Technical Papers 2020-01-0291
2020-04-14

Combined Experimental/Numerical Study of the Soot Formation Process in a Gasoline Direct-Injection Spray in the Presence of Laser-Induced Plasma Ignition 2020-01-0291

Combustion issued from an eight-hole, direct-injection spray was experimentally studied in a constant-volume pre-burn combustion vessel using simultaneous high-speed diffused back-illumination extinction imaging (DBIEI) and OH* chemiluminescence. DBIEI has been employed to observe the liquid-phase of the spray and to quantitatively investigate the soot formation and oxidation taking place during combustion. The fuel-air mixture was ignited with a plasma induced by a single-shot Nd:YAG laser, permitting precise control of the ignition location in space and time. OH* chemiluminescence was used to track the high-temperature ignition and flame. The study showed that increasing the delay between the end of injection and ignition drastically reduces soot formation without necessarily compromising combustion efficiency. For long delays between the end of injection and ignition (1.9 ms) soot formation was eliminated in the main downstream charge of the fuel spray. However, poorly atomized and large droplets formed at the end of injection (dribble) eventually do form soot near the injector even when none is formed in the main charge. The quantitative soot measurements for these spray and ignition scenarios, resolved in time and space, represents a significant new achievement.
Reynolds-averaged Navier-Stokes (RANS) simulations were performed to assess spray mixing and combustion. An analysis of the predicted fuel-air mixture in key regions, defined based upon experimental observations, was used to explain different flame propagation speeds and soot production tendencies when varying ignition timing. The mixture analysis indicates that soot production can be avoided if the flame propagates into regions where the equivalence ratio (Φ) is already below 2. Reactive RANS simulations have also been performed, but with a poor match against the experiment, as the flame speed and heat-release rate are largely over estimated. This modeling weakness appears related to a very high level of turbulent viscosity predicted for the high-momentum spray in the RANS simulations, which is an important consideration for modeling ignition and flame propagation in mixtures immediately created by the spray.

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