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Journal Article

A Comprehensive Evaluation of Diesel Engine CFD Modeling Predictions Using a Semi-Empirical Soot Model over a Broad Range of Combustion Systems

Single-cylinder engine experiments and computational fluid dynamics (CFD) modeling were used in this study to conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the accuracy of the modeling approach, with a focus on soot emissions. A semi-empirical soot model, the classic two-step Hiroyasu model with Nagle and Strickland-Constable oxidation, was used. A broad range of direct-injected (DI) combustion systems were investigated to assess the predictive accuracy of the soot model as a design tool for modern DI diesel engines. Experiments were conducted on a 2.5 liter single-cylinder engine. Combustion system combinations included three unique piston bowl shapes and seven variants of a common rail fuel injector. The pistons included a baseline “Mexican hat” piston, a reentrant piston, and a non-axisymmetric piston similar to the Volvo WAVE design. The injectors featured six or seven holes and systematically varied included angles from 120 to 150 degrees and hole sizes from 170 to 273 μm.
Journal Article

Early Investigation of Ducted Fuel Injection for Reducing Soot in Mixing-Controlled Diesel Flames

Ducted fuel injection (DFI) is a developing technology for reducing in-cylinder soot formed during mixing-controlled combustion in diesel compression ignition engines. Fuel injection through a small duct has the effect of extending the lift-off length (LOL) and reducing the equivalence ratio at ignition. In this work, the feasibility of DFI to reduce soot and to enable leaner lifted-flame combustion (LLFC) is investigated for a single diesel jet injected from a 138 μm orifice into engine-like (60-120 bar, 800-950 K) quiescent conditions. High-speed imaging and natural luminosity (NL) measurements of combusting sprays were used to quantify duct effects on jet penetration, ignition delay, LOL, and soot emission in a constant pressure high-temperature-pressure vessel (HTPV). At the highest ambient pressure and temperatures tested, soot luminosity was reduced by as much as 50%.
Journal Article

Understanding Hydrocarbon Emissions in Heavy Duty Diesel Engines Combining Experimental and Computational Methods

Fundamental understanding of the sources of fuel-derived Unburned Hydrocarbon (UHC) emissions in heavy duty diesel engines is a key piece of knowledge that impacts engine combustion system development. Current emissions regulations for hydrocarbons can be difficult to meet in-cylinder and thus after treatment technologies such as oxidation catalysts are typically used, which can be costly. In this work, Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulations are combined with engine experiments in an effort to build an understanding of hydrocarbon sources. In the experiments, the combustion system design was varied through injector style, injector rate shape, combustion chamber geometry, and calibration, to study the impact on UHC emissions from mixing-controlled diesel combustion.
Technical Paper

Investigating Limitations of a Two-Zone NOx Model Applied to DI Diesel Combustion Using 3-D Modeling

A two-zone NOx model intended for 1-D engine simulations was developed and used to model NOx emissions from a 2.5 L single-cylinder engine. The intent of the present work is to understand key aspects of a simple NOx model that are needed for predictive accuracy, including NOx formation and destruction phenomena in a DI Diesel combustion system. The presented two-zone model is fundamentally based on the heat release rate and thermodynamic incylinder data, and uses the Extended Zeldovich mechanism to model NO. Results show that the model responded very well to changes in speed, load, injection timing, and EGR level. It matched measured tail pipe NOx levels within 20%, using a single tuning setup. When the model was applied to varied injection rate shapes, it showed correct sensitivity to speed, load, injection timing, and EGR level, but the absolute level was well outside the target accuracy. The same limitation was seen when applying the Plee NOx model.
Technical Paper

Control-Oriented Dynamics Analysis for Electrified Turbocharged Diesel Engines

Engine electrification is a critical technology in the promotion of engine fuel efficiency, among which the electrified turbocharger is regarded as the promising solution in engine downsizing. By installing electrical devices on the turbocharger, the excess energy can be captured, stored, and re-used. The electrified turbocharger consists of a variable geometry turbocharger (VGT) and an electric motor (EM) within the turbocharger bearing housing, where the EM is capable in bi-directional power transfer. The VGT, EM, and exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) valve all impact the dynamics of air path. In this paper, the dynamics in an electrified turbocharged diesel engine (ETDE), especially the couplings between different loops in the air path is analyzed. Furthermore, an explicit principle in selecting control variables is proposed. Based on the analysis, a model-based multi-input multi-output (MIMO) decoupling controller is designed to regulate the air path dynamics.
Technical Paper

Numerical Simulation and Experimental Verification of Gasoline Intake Port Design

The hybrid vehicle engines modified for high exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) is a good choice for high efficiency and low NOx emissions. However, high EGR will dilute the engine charge and may cause serious performance problems, such as incomplete combustion, torque fluctuation, and engine misfire. An efficient way to overcome these drawbacks is to intensify tumble leading to increased turbulent intensity at the time of ignition. The enhancement of turbulent intensity will increase flame velocity and improve combustion quality, therefore increasing engine tolerance to higher EGR. To achieve the goal of increasing tolerance to EGR, this work reports a CFD investigation of high tumble intake port design using STAR-CD. The validations had been performed through the comparison with PIV experimental tests.
Journal Article

The Visualization of Soot Late in the Diesel Combustion Process by Laser Induced Incandescence with a Vertical Laser Sheet

Although soot-formation processes in diesel engines have been well characterized during the mixing-controlled burn, little is known about the distribution of soot throughout the combustion chamber after the end of appreciable heat release during the expansion and exhaust strokes. Hence, the laser-induced incandescence (LII) diagnostic was developed to visualize the distribution of soot within an optically accessible single-cylinder direct-injection diesel engine during this period. The developed LII diagnostic is semi-quantitative; i.e., if certain conditions (listed in the Appendix) are true, it accurately captures spatial and temporal trends in the in-cylinder soot field. The diagnostic features a vertically oriented and vertically propagating laser sheet that can be translated across the combustion chamber, where “vertical” refers to a direction parallel to the axis of the cylinder bore.
Journal Article

An Experimental Investigation of Low-Soot and Soot-Free Combustion Strategies in a Heavy-Duty, Single-Cylinder, Direct-Injection, Optical Diesel Engine

High-efficiency, clean-combustion strategies for heavy-duty diesel engines are critical for meeting stringent emissions regulations and reducing the costs of aftertreatment systems that are currently required to meet these regulations. Results from previous constant-volume combustion-vessel experiments using a single jet of fuel under quiescent conditions have shown that mixing-controlled soot-free combustion (i.e., combustion where soot is not produced) is possible with #2 diesel fuel. These experiments employed small injector-orifice diameters (≺ 150 μm) and high fuel-injection pressures (≻ 200 MPa) at top-dead-center (TDC) temperatures and densities that could be achievable in modern heavy-duty diesel engines.
Journal Article

Impact of Biodiesel Impurities on the Performance and Durability of DOC, DPF and SCR Technologies

It is estimated that operating continuously on a B20 fuel containing the current allowable ASTM specification limits for metal impurities in biodiesel could result in a doubling of ash exposure relative to lube-oil-derived ash. The purpose of this study was to determine if a fuel containing metals at the ASTM limits could cause adverse impacts on the performance and durability of diesel emission control systems. An accelerated durability test method was developed to determine the potential impact of these biodiesel impurities. The test program included engine testing with multiple DPF substrate types as well as DOC and SCR catalysts. The results showed no significant degradation in the thermo-mechanical properties of cordierite, aluminum titanate, or silicon carbide DPFs after exposure to 150,000 mile equivalent biodiesel ash and thermal aging. However, exposure of a cordierite DPF to 435,000 mile equivalent aging resulted in a 69% decrease in the thermal shock resistance parameter.
Technical Paper

A Feasible CFD Methodology for Gasoline Intake Flow Optimization in a HEV Application - Part 1: Development and Validation

Hybrid vehicle engines modified for high exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) are a good choice for high efficiency and low NOx emissions. Such operation can result in an HEV when a downsized engine is used at high load for a large fraction of its run time to recharge the battery or provide acceleration assist. However, high EGR will dilute the engine charge and may cause serious performance problems such as incomplete combustion, torque fluctuation, and engine misfire. An efficient way to overcome these drawbacks is to intensify tumble leading to increased turbulent intensity at the time of ignition. The enhancement of turbulent intensity will increase flame velocity and improve combustion quality, therefore increasing engine tolerance to higher EGR. It is accepted that the detailed experimental characterization of flow field near top dead center (TDC) in an engine environment is no longer practical and cost effective.
Journal Article

Influence of Injection Timing and Piston Bowl Geometry on PCCI Combustion and Emissions

Premixed Charge Compression Ignition (PCCI), a Low Temperature Combustion (LTC) strategy for diesel engines is of increasing interest due to its potential to simultaneously reduce soot and NOx emissions. However, the influence of mixture preparation on combustion phasing and heat release rate in LTC is not fully understood. In the present study, the influence of injection timing on mixture preparation, combustion and emissions in PCCI mode is investigated by experimental and computational methods. A sequential coupling approach of 3D CFD with a Stochastic Reactor Model (SRM) is used to simulate the PCCI engine. The SRM accounts for detailed chemical kinetics, convective heat transfer and turbulent micro-mixing. In this integrated approach, the temperature-equivalence ratio statistics obtained using KIVA 3V are mapped onto the stochastic particle ensemble used in the SRM.
Journal Article

New Developments in Diesel Oxidation Catalysts

A number of oxidation catalysts have been prepared using different types of advanced support materials such as ceria-zirconia, silica-titania, spinels and perovskites. Active metals such as Pd and Au-Pd were loaded by conventional impregnation techniques and/or deposition-precipitation methods. A liquid hydrocarbon delivery system was designed and implemented for the catalyst test benches in order to simulate the diesel engine exhaust environment. The activity of fresh (no degreening) catalysts was evaluated with traditional CO and light hydrocarbons (C2H4, C3H6) as well as with heavy hydrocarbons such as C10 H22.
Technical Paper

Preparation and Characterization of Nanophase Gold Catalysts for Emissions Control

Various gold catalysts were prepared using commercial and in-house fabricated advanced catalyst supports that included mesoporous silica, mesoporous alumina, sol-gel alumina, and transition metal oxides. Gold nanoparticles were loaded on the supports by co-precipitation, deposition-precipitation, ion exchange and surface functionalization techniques. The average gold particle size was ∼20nm or less. The oxidation activity of the prepared catalysts was studied using carbon monoxide and light hydrocarbons (ethylene, propylene and propane) in presence of water and CO2 and the results are presented.
Technical Paper

Effects of Fuel Property Changes on Heavy-Duty HCCI Combustion

Homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) offers the potential for significant improvements in efficiency with a substantial reduction in emissions. However, achieving heavy-duty (HD) HCCI engine operation at practical loads and speeds presents numerous technical challenges. Successful expansion of the HCCI operating range to include the full range of load and speed must be accomplished while maintaining proper combustion phasing, control of maximum cylinder pressure and pressure rise rates, and low emissions of NOx and particulate matter (PM). Significant progress in this endeavour has been made through a collaborative research effort between Caterpillar and ExxonMobil. This paper evaluates fuel effects on HCCI engine operating range and emissions. Test fuels were developed in the gasoline and diesel boiling range covering a broad range of ignition quality, fuel chemistry, and volatility.
Technical Paper

Steady-State Engine Testing of γ-Alumina Catalysts Under Plasma Assist for NOx Control in Heavy-Duty Diesel Exhaust

A slipstream of exhaust from a Caterpillar 3126B engine was diverted into a plasma-catalytic NOx control system in the space velocity range of 7,000 to 100,000 hr-1. The stream was first fed through a non-thermal plasma that was formed in a coaxial cylinder dielectric barrier discharge reactor. Plasma treated gas was then passed over a catalyst bed held at constant temperature in the range of 573 to 773 K. Catalysts examined consisted of γ-alumina, indium-doped γ-alumina, and silver-doped γ-alumina. Road and rated load conditions resulted in engine out NOx levels of 250 - 600 ppm. The effects of hydrocarbon level, catalyst temperature, and space velocity are discussed where propene and in one case ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel (late cycle injection) were the reducing agents used for NOx reduction. Results showed NOx reduction in the range of 25 - 97% depending on engine operating conditions and management of the catalyst and slipstream conditions.
Technical Paper

API CI-4: The First Oil Category for Diesel Engines Using Cooled Exhaust Gas Recirculation

This oil category was driven by two new cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) engine tests operating with 15% EGR, with used oil soot levels at the end of the test ranging from 6 to 9%. These tests are the Mack T-10 and Cummins M11 EGR, which address ring, cylinder liner, bearing, and valve train wear; filter plugging, and sludge. In addition to these two new EGR tests, there is a Caterpillar single-cylinder test without EGR which measures piston deposits and oil consumption control using an articulated piston. This test is called the Caterpillar 1R and is included in the existing Global DHD-1 specification. In total, the API CI-4 category includes eight fired-engine tests and seven bench tests covering all the engine oil parameters. The new bench tests include a seal compatibility test for fresh oils and a low temperature pumpability test for used oils containing 5% soot. This paper provides a review of the all the tests, matrix results, and limits for this new oil category.
Technical Paper

System Efficiency Issues for Natural Gas Fueled HCCI Engines in Heavy-Duty Stationary Applications

Homogeneous Charge Compression Ignition (HCCI) has been proposed for natural gas engines in heavy duty stationary power generation applications. A number of researchers have demonstrated, through simulation and experiment, the feasibility of obtaining high gross indicated thermal efficiencies and very low NOx emissions at reasonable load levels. With a goal of eventual commercialization of these engines, this paper sets forth some of the primary challenges in obtaining high brake thermal efficiency from production feasible engines. Experimental results, in conjunction with simulation and analysis, are used to compare HCCI operation with traditional lean burn spark ignition performance. Current HCCI technology is characterized by low power density, very dilute mixtures, and low combustion efficiency. The quantitative adverse effect of each of these traits is demonstrated with respect to the brake thermal efficiency that can be expected in real world applications.
Technical Paper

Plasma-Facilitated SCR of NOx in Heavy-Duty Diesel Exhaust

This paper describes two independent studies on γ-alumina as a plasma-activated catalyst. γ-alumina (2.5 - 4.3 wt%) was coated onto the surface of mesoporous silica to determine the importance of aluminum surface coordination on NOx conversion in conjunction with nonthermal plasma. Results indicate that the presence of 5- and 6- fold aluminum coordination sites in γ-alumina could be a significant factor in the NOx reduction process. A second study examined the effect of changing the reducing agent on NOx conversion. Several hydrocarbons were examined including propene, propane, isooctane, methanol, and acetaldehyde. It is demonstrated that methanol was the most effective reducing agent of those tested for a plasma-facilitated reaction over γ-alumina.
Technical Paper

Plasma-Enhanced Catalytic Reduction of NOx in Simulated Lean Exhaust

NOx reduction efficiency in simulated lean exhaust conditions has been examined for three proprietary catalyst materials using a non-thermal plasma discharge as a pretreatment stage to the catalyst. Using propene as the reducing agent for selective catalytic reduction, 74% reduction of NOx has been observed in the presence of 20 ppm SO2. For sulfur-free simulated exhaust, 84% NOx reduction has been obtained. Results show that the impact of sulfur on the samples examined can vary widely from virtually no effect (< 5%) to more than 20% loss in activity depending on the catalyst. Any loss due to sulfur poisoning appears to be irreversible according to limited measurements on poisoned catalysts exposed to sulfur-free exhaust streams. Catalysts were tested over a temperature range of 473-773K, with the highest activity observed at 773K. Examination of this large temperature window has shown that the optimum C1:NOx ratio changes with temperature.
Technical Paper

Development of Plasma Spray Coated Cylinder Liners

Improved fuel economy and reduction of emissions can be achieved by insulation of the combustion chamber components to reduce heat rejection. However, such insulation will also increase the operating temperature of the piston ring/cylinder liner interface from approximately 150°C to over 300°C. Since existing ring/liner materials cannot withstand these higher operating temperatures alternatives are needed for this critical tribological interface. This paper describes the development of a cost effective ID grinding technique for machining the bores of plasma sprayed diesel engine cylinder liners.