Effects of Butanol Isomers on the Combustion and Emission Characteristics of a Heavy-Duty Engine in RCCI Mode
Butanol is an attractive alternative fuel by virtue of its renewable source and low sooting tendency. In this paper, three butanol isomers (n-butanol, isobutanol, and tert-butanol) were induced via port injection respectively and n-heptane was directly injected into the cylinder to investigate reactivity controlled compression ignition in a heavy-duty diesel engine. This work evaluates the potential of applying butanol as low reactivity fuel and the effects of reactivity gradient on combustion and emission characteristics. The experiments were performed from low load to medium-high load. Due to the different reactivities among the butanol isomers, the exhaust gas recirculation rate and the direct injection strategy were varied for a specific butanol isomer and testing load. Particularly, isobutanol/n-heptane can be operated with single direct injection and no exhaust gas recirculation up to medium load due to the high octane rating.