Assessment and Optimisation of the Instrumentation Used for Cetane Tests on Diesel Fuels 922269

This paper is concerned with the performance of the sensors and associated instrumentation used for the standard cetane tests for diesel fuels according to the ASTM D-613 procedure. The two primary sensors are replaced by modern units, and the analogue monitoring system is replaced by a digital one; the changes in the performance of the instrumentation system are then assessed.
It is shown that the main source of inaccuracy in the measurement of ignition delay (on which the cetane test is based) is cyclic instability in the start of combustion, and that the current instrumentation and monitoring methods do not cope well with this instability. Although some of the cyclic variation can be ascribed to the instrumentation system, a large part is contributed by variability in the fuel ignition and injection processes. Improvements to the instrumentation and monitoring systems are presented and assessed.


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