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Technical Paper

Effect of Flame Propagation on the Auto-Ignition Timing in SI-CAI Hybrid Combustion (SCHC)

SCHC (SI-CAI hybrid combustion), also known as spark-assisted HCCI, has been proved to be an effective method to stabilize combustion and extend the operation range of high efficiency, low temperature combustion. The combustion is initiated by the spark discharge followed by a propagation of flame front until the auto-ignition of end-gas. Spark ignition and the spark timing can be used to control the combustion event. The goal of this research is to study the effect of flame propagation on the auto-ignition timing in SCHC by means of chemiluminescence imaging and heat release analysis based on an optical engine. With higher EGR (exhaust gas recirculation) rate, more fuel is consumed by the flame propagation and stronger correlation between the flame propagation and auto-ignition is observed.
Technical Paper

Combustion and Emission Characteristics of a HCCI Engine Fuelled with Different n-Butanol-Gasoline Blends

Biobutanol, i.e. n-butanol, as a second generation bio-derived alternative fuel of internal combustion engines, can facilitate the energy diversification in transportation and reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from engines and vehicles. However, the majority of research was conducted on spark-ignition engines fuelled with n-butanol and its blend with gasoline. A few investigations were focused on the combustion and exhaust emission characteristics of homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) engines fuelled with n-butanol-gasoline blends. In this study, experiments were conducted in a single cylinder four stroke port fuel injection HCCI engine with fully variable valve lift and timing mechanisms on both the intake and exhaust valves. HCCI combustion was achieved by employing the negative valve overlap (NVO) strategy while being fueled with gasoline (Bu0), n-butanol (Bu100) and their blends containing 30% n-butanol by volume (Bu30).
Technical Paper

Continuous Load Adjustment Strategy of a Gasoline HCCI-SI Engine Fully Controlled by Exhaust Gas

Homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) technology is promising to reduce engine exhaust emissions and fuel consumption. However, it is still confronted with the problem of its narrow operation range that covers only the light and medium loads. Therefore, to expand the operation range of HCCI, mode switching between HCCI combustion and transition SI combustion is necessary, which may bring additional problems to be resolved, including load fluctuation and increasing the complexity of control strategy, etc. In this paper, a continuously adjustable load strategy is proposed for gasoline engines. With the application of the strategy, engine load can be adjusted continuously by the in-cylinder residual gas fraction in the whole operation range. In this research, hybrid combustion is employed to bridge the gaps between HCCI and traditional SI and thus realize smooth transition between different load points.
Technical Paper

Investigation of Split Injection in a Single Cylinder Optical Diesel Engine

Over the last decade, the diesel engine has made dramatic progress in its performance and market penetration. However, in order to meet future emissions legislations, Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) and particulate matters' (PM) emissions will need to be reduced simultaneously. Nowadays researchers are focused on different combustion modes which can have a great potential for both low soot and low NOx. In order to achieve this, different injection strategies have been investigated. This study investigates the effects of split injection strategies with high levels of Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) on combustion performance and emissions in a single-cylinder direct injection optical diesel engine. The investigation is focused on the effects of injection timing of split injection strategies. A Ricardo Hydra single-cylinder optical engine was used in which conventional experimental methods like cylinder pressure data, heat release analysis and exhaust emissions analysis were applied.
Technical Paper

Performance and Analysis of a 4-Stroke Multi-Cylinder Gasoline Engine with CAI Combustion

Controlled Auto-Ignition (CAI) combustion was realised in a production type 4-stroke 4-cylinder gasoline engine without intake charge heating or increasing compression ratio. The CAI engine operation was achieved using substantially standard components modified only in camshafts to restrict the gas exchange process The engine could be operated with CAI combustion within a range of load (0.5 to 4 bar BMEP) and speed (1000 to 3500 rpm). Significant reductions in both specific fuel consumption and CO emissions were found. The reduction in NOx emission was more than 93% across the whole CAI range. Though unburned hydrocarbons were higher under the CAI engine operation. In order to evaluate the potential of the CAI combustion technology, the European NEDC driving cycle vehicle simulation was carried out for two identical vehicles powered by a SI engine and a CAI/SI hybrid engine, respectively.
Technical Paper

Research and Development of Controlled Auto-Ignition (CAI) Combustion in a 4-Stroke Multi-Cylinder Gasoline Engine

Controlled Auto-Ignition (CAI) combustion has been achieved in a production type 4-stroke multi-cylinder gasoline engine. The engine was based on a Ford 1.7L Zetec-SE 16V engine with a compression ratio of 10.3, using substantially standard components modified only in design dimensions to control the gas exchange process in order to significantly increase the trapped residuals. The engine was also equipped with Variable Cam Timing (VCT) on both the intake and exhaust camshafts. It was found that the largely increased trapped residuals alone were sufficient to achieve CAI in this engine and with VCT, a range of loads between 0.5 and 4 bar BMEP and engine speeds between 1000 and 3500 rpm were mapped for CAI fuel consumption and exhaust emissions. The measured CAI results were compared with those of Spark Ignition (SI) combustion in the same engine but with standard camshafts at the same speeds and loads.
Technical Paper

The Dilution, Chemical, and Thermal Effects of Exhaust Gas Recirculation on Diesel Engine Emissions - Part 3: Effects of Water Vapour

Water vapour is a main constituent of exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) in diesel engines and its influence on combustion and emissions were investigated. The following effects of the water vapour were examined experimentally: the effect of replacing part of the inlet charge oxygen (dilution effect), the effect of the higher specific heat capacity of water vapour in comparison with that of oxygen it replaces (thermal effect), the effect of dissociation of water vapour (chemical effect), as well as the overall effect of water vapour on combustion and emissions. Water vapour was introduced into the inlet charge, progressively, so that up to 3 percent of the inlet charge mass was displaced. This was equivalent to the amount of water vapour contained in 52 percent by mass of EGR for the engine operating condition tested in this work.
Technical Paper

The Dilution, Chemical, and Thermal Effects of Exhaust Gas Recirculation on Disesel Engine Emissions - Part 4: Effects of Carbon Dioxide and Water Vapour

This paper deals with the effects on diesel engine combustion and emissions of carbon dioxide and water vapour the two main constituents of EGR. It concludes the work covered in Parts 1, 2, and 3 of this series of papers. A comparison is presented of the different effects that each of these constituents has on combustion and emissions. The comparison showed that the dilution effect was the most significant one. Furthermore, the dilution effect for carbon dioxide is higher than that for water vapour because EGR has roughly twice as much carbon dioxide than water vapour. On the other hand, the water vapour had a higher thermal effect in comparison to that of carbon dioxide due to the higher specific heat capacity of water vapour. The chemical effect of carbon dioxide was, generally, higher than that of water vapour.
Technical Paper

A Mathematical Model for In-Cylinder Catalytic Oxidation of Hydrocarbons in Spark-Ignition Engines

Our earlier experimental study has shown that exhaust unburnt hydrocarbon emissions from spark-ignition engines can be reduced effectively by using in-cylinder catalysts on the surface of the piston top-land crevice. In order to improve the understanding of the process and mechanism by means of which unburnt hydrocarbon emissions are reduced, a phenomenological mathematical model was developed for catalytic oxidation processes in the piston-ring-pack crevice. This paper describes in details the modelling of the processes of the gas flow, mass diffusion and reaction kinetics in the crevices. The flow in the crevices is assumed to be isothermal and at the temperature of the piston crown surface. The overall rate of reaction is calculated using expressions for mass diffusion for laminar flows in channels and a first-order Arrhenius-type expression for catalytic reaction kinetics of hydrocarbon oxidation over platinum.
Technical Paper

The Dilution, Chemical, and Thermal Effects of Exhaust Gas Recirculation on Diesel Engine Emissions - Part 1: Effect of Reducing Inlet Charge Oxygen

This is a first of a series of papers describing how the replacement of some of the inlet air with EGR modifies the diesel combustion process and thereby affects the exhaust emissions. This paper deals with only the reduction of oxygen in the inlet charge to the engine (dilution effect). The oxygen in the inlet charge to a direct injection diesel engine was progressively replaced by inert gases, whilst the engine speed, fuelling rate, injection timing, total mass and the specific heat capacity of the inlet charge were kept constant. The use of inert gases for oxygen replacement, rather than carbon dioxide (CO2) or water vapour normally found in EGR, ensured that the effects on combustion of dissociation of these species were excluded. In addition, the effects of oxygen replacement on ignition delay were isolated and quantified.
Technical Paper

The Dilution, Chemical, and Thermal Effects of Exhaust Gas Recirculation on Diesel Engine Emissions - Part 2: Effects of Carbon Dioxide

This is the second of a series of papers on how exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) affects diesel engine combustion and emissions. It concentrates on the effects of carbon dioxide (CO2) which is a principal constituent of EGR. Results are presented from a number of tests during which the nitrogen or oxygen in the engine inlet air was progressively replaced by CO2 and/or inert gases, whilst the engine speed, fuelling rate, injection timing, inlet charge total mass rate and inlet charge temperature were kept constant. In one set of tests, some of the nitrogen in the inlet air was progressively replaced by a carefully controlled mixture of CO2 and argon. This ensured that the added gas mixture had equal specific heat capacity to that of the nitrogen being replaced. Thus, the effects of dissociated CO2 on combustion and emissions could be isolated and quantified (chemical effect).
Technical Paper

The Effect of Exhaust Gas Recirculation on Soot Formation in a High-Speed Direct-injection Diesel Engine

A number of tests were conducted on a 2.5 litre, high-speed, direct-injection diesel engine running at various loads and speeds. The aim of the tests was to gain understanding which would lead to more effective use of exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) for controlling exhaust NOx whilst minimising the penalties of increased smoke emission and fuel consumption. In addition to exhaust emission measurements, in-cylinder sampling of combustion gases was carried out using a fast-acting, snatch-sampling valve. The results showed that the effectiveness of EGR was enhanced considerably by cooling the EGR. In addition to more effective NOx control, this measure also improved volumetric efficiency which assisted in the control of smoke emission and fuel consumption. This second of two papers on the use of EGR in diesel engines deals with the effects of EGR on soot emission and on the engine fuel economy.
Technical Paper

The Effect of Exhaust Gas Recirculation on Combustion and NOx Emissions in a High-Speed Direct-injection Diesel Engine

A number of tests were conducted on a 2.5 litre, high-speed, direct-injection diesel engine running at various loads and speeds. The aim of the tests was to gain understanding which would lead to more effective use of exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) for controlling exhaust NOx. In addition to exhaust emission measurements, extensive in-cylinder sampling of combustion gases was carried out using a fast-acting, snatch-sampling valve. The results showed that the effectiveness of EGR in suppressing NOx was enhanced considerably by intercooling the inlet charge and by cooling the EGR. A companion paper (SAE 960841) deals with the effects of EGR on soot formation and emission [1].
Technical Paper

In-Cylinder Catalysts - A Novel Approach to Reduce Hydrocarbon Emissions from Spark-Ignition Engines

A novel approach was proposed and investigated to reduce unburned hydrocarbon emissions from spark-ignition engines using in-cylinder catalysts. The unburned hydrocarbons in spark-ignition engines arise primarily from sources near the combustion chamber walls, such as flame quenching at the entrance of crevice volumes and at the combustion chamber wall, and the absorption and desorption of fuel vapour into oil layers on the cylinder wall. The proximity of these sources of unburned hydrocarbons to the wall means that they can be reduced significantly by simply using in-cylinder catalysts on the combustion chamber walls, in particular on the surfaces of the crevice volumes. A platinum-rhodium coating was deposited on the top and side surfaces of the piston crown, and its effects on the engine combustion and emission characteristics were examined in this experimental investigation.
Technical Paper

In-Cylinder Mixture Excursions in a Port-Injected Engine During Fast Throttle Opening

Fast throttle opening in port-injected gasoline engines often results in a lean air-fuel ratio excursion lasting several engine cycles. Even when the engine is equipped with a three-way catalyst this lean excursion can lead to high tailpipe emissions. This paper will describe an in-cylinder method of measuring these air-fuel ratio excursions, using a fast flame ionisation detector. Examples will be given of air-fuel ratio excursions obtained on a four-valve-per-cylinder sequentially-injected gasoline engine equipped with a lambda sensor. The air-fuel ratio excursions together with measurements of the engine air flow are used to estimate me build up of the fuel film on the inlet manifold walls. Whilst air-fuel ratio excursions have been recorded previously by other investigators, their results were obtained from exhaust gas analysis using fast oxygen sensors.
Technical Paper

Modelling and Measurements from a Natural Gas Fuelled Engine

A programme of work is being undertaken to improve the performance of a spark-ignited natural gas engine, that has been converted from a diesel engine. The aim of this work is to reduce the fuel consumption and NOx emissions. All experimental data and predictions refer to full throttle operation at 1500 rpm. The work to be reported here will include baseline tests that have been used to calibrate a two-zone combustion model. Particularly important are the predictions of the NOx emissions. The simulation has then been used to predict the effects of using: a higher compression ratio, and a faster burn combustion system. The design philosophy of the resulting fast burn combustion system is discussed, and some preliminary results are presented. There will be a discussion of the ignition parameters that affect the lean burn operation, and the effect of the spark plug gap position is discussed in the context of results from a phenomenological model of turbulent combustion.
Technical Paper

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

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.
Technical Paper

Combustion Analysis of Sunflower Oil in a Diesel Engine and its Impact on Lubricant Quality

Comparisons have been made between the ignition delay and combustion performance of sunflower oil and diesel fuel. The experimental results have been obtained in a naturally aspirated direct injection diesel engine, and particular attention has been given to the heat release analysis, ignition delay, combustion noise and lubricant degradation. The anomalous behaviour of sunflower oil is explained by reference to its physical properties and ignition quality, as reported in the literature from bomb tests. It is concluded that the power output and brake efficiency are largely unaffected by the use of the sunflower oil, and that lubricant degradation is not likely to be significant. However, the build up of combustion deposits already widely reported in the literature was observed. Suggestions are made as to how this might be ameliorated through modifications to the injection system.