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Technical Paper

Piston Bowl Geometry Effects on Combustion Development in a High-Speed Light-Duty Diesel Engine

In this work we studied the effects of piston bowl design on combustion in a small-bore direct-injection diesel engine. Two bowl designs were compared: a conventional, omega-shaped bowl and a stepped-lip piston bowl. Experiments were carried out in the Sandia single-cylinder optical engine facility, with a medium-load, mild-boosted operating condition featuring a pilot+main injection strategy. CFD simulations were carried out with the FRESCO platform featuring full-geometric body-fitted mesh modeling of the engine and were validated against measured in-cylinder performance as well as soot natural luminosity images. Differences in combustion development were studied using the simulation results, and sensitivities to in-cylinder flow field (swirl ratio) and injection rate parameters were also analyzed.
Technical Paper

Bowl Geometry Effects on Turbulent Flow Structure in a Direct Injection Diesel Engine

Diesel piston bowl geometry can affect turbulent mixing and therefore it impacts heat-release rates, thermal efficiency, and soot emissions. The focus of this work is on the effects of bowl geometry and injection timing on turbulent flow structure. This computational study compares engine behavior with two pistons representing competing approaches to combustion chamber design: a conventional, re-entrant piston bowl and a stepped-lip piston bowl. Three-dimensional computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations are performed for a part-load, conventional diesel combustion operating point with a pilot-main injection strategy under non-combusting conditions. Two injection timings are simulated based on experimental findings: an injection timing for which the stepped-lip piston enables significant efficiency and emissions benefits, and an injection timing with diminished benefits compared to the conventional, re-entrant piston.
Technical Paper

Simultaneous Reduction of Soot and NOX Emissions by Means of the HCPC Concept: Complying with the Heavy Duty EURO 6 Limits without Aftertreatment System

Due to concerns regarding pollutant and CO2 emissions, advanced combustion modes that can simultaneously reduce exhaust emissions and improve thermal efficiency have been widely investigated. The main characteristic of the new combustion strategies, such as HCCI and LTC, is that the formation of a homogenous mixture or a controllable stratified mixture is required prior to ignition. The major issue with these approaches is the lack of a direct method for the control of ignition timing and combustion rate, which can be only indirectly controlled using high EGR rates and/or lean mixtures. Homogeneous Charge Progressive Combustion (HCPC) is based on the split-cycle principle. Intake and compression phases are performed in a reciprocating external compressor, which drives the air into the combustor cylinder during the combustion process, through a transfer duct. A transfer valve is positioned between the compressor cylinder and the transfer duct.
Technical Paper

A Computational Investigation of the Effects of Swirl Ratio and Injection Pressure on Mixture Preparation and Wall Heat Transfer in a Light-Duty Diesel Engine

In a recent study, quantitative measurements were presented of in-cylinder spatial distributions of mixture equivalence ratio in a single-cylinder light-duty optical diesel engine, operated with a non-reactive mixture at conditions similar to an early injection low-temperature combustion mode. In the experiments a planar laser-induced fluorescence (PLIF) methodology was used to obtain local mixture equivalence ratio values based on a diesel fuel surrogate (75% n-heptane, 25% iso-octane), with a small fraction of toluene as fluorescing tracer (0.5% by mass). Significant changes in the mixture's structure and composition at the walls were observed due to increased charge motion at high swirl and injection pressure levels. This suggested a non-negligible impact on wall heat transfer and, ultimately, on efficiency and engine-out emissions.
Technical Paper

An Analysis on Time Scale Separation for Engine Simulations with Detailed Chemistry

The simulation of combustion chemistry in internal combustion engines is challenging due to the need to include detailed reaction mechanisms to describe the engine physics. Computational times needed for coupling full chemistry to CFD simulations are still too computationally demanding, even when distributed computer systems are exploited. For these reasons the present paper proposes a time scale separation approach for the integration of the chemistry differential equations and applies it in an engine CFD code. The time scale separation is achieved through the estimation of a characteristic time for each of the species and the introduction of a sampling timestep, wherein the chemistry is subcycled during the overall integration. This allows explicit integration of the system to be carried out, and the step size is governed by tolerance requirements.
Technical Paper

Integration of a Continuous Multi-Component Fuel Evaporation Model with an Improved G-Equation Combustion and Detailed Chemical Kinetics Model with Application to GDI Engines

A continuous multi-component fuel evaporation model has been integrated with an improved G-equation combustion and detailed chemical kinetics model. The integrated code has been successfully used to simulate a gasoline direct injection engine. In the multi-component fuel model, the theory of continuous thermodynamics is used to model the properties and composition of multi-component fuels such as gasoline. In the improved G-equation combustion model a flamelet approach based on the G-equation is used that considers multi-component fuel effects. To precisely calculate the local and instantaneous residual which has a great effect on the laminar flame speed, a “transport equation residual” model is used. A Damkohler number criterion is used to determine the combustion mode in flame containing cells.
Journal Article

A Transport Equation Residual Model Incorporating Refined G-Equation and Detailed Chemical Kinetics Combustion Models

A transport equation residual model incorporating refined G-equation and detailed chemical kinetics combustion models has been developed and implemented in the ERC KIVA-3V release2 code for Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engine simulations for better predictions of flame propagation. In the transport equation residual model a fictitious species concept is introduced to account for the residual gases in the cylinder, which have a great effect on the laminar flame speed. The residual gases include CO2, H2O and N2 remaining from the previous engine cycle or introduced using EGR. This pseudo species is described by a transport equation. The transport equation residual model differentiates between CO2 and H2O from the previous engine cycle or EGR and that which is from the combustion products of the current engine cycle.
Journal Article

Investigation of Spray Evaporation and Numerical Model Applied for Fuel-injection Small Engines

The purpose of this research is to develop a prediction technique that can be used in the development of port fuel-injection (hereinafter called PFI) gasoline engines, especially for general purpose small utility engines. Utility engines have two contradictory desirable aspects: compactness and high-power at wide open throttle. Therefore, applying the port fuel injector to utility engines presents a unique intractableness that is different from application to automobiles or motorcycles. At the condition of wide open throttle, a large amount of fuel is required to output high power, and injected fuel is deposited as a wall film on the intake port wall. Despite the fuel rich condition, emissions are required to be kept under a certain level. Thus, it is significant to understand the wall film phenomenon and control film thickness in the intake ports.
Journal Article

Ring Pack Crevice Effects on the Hydrocarbon Emissions from an Air-Cooled Utility Engine

The effect of the ring pack storage mechanism on the hydrocarbon (HC) emissions from an air-cooled utility engine has been studied using a simplified ring pack model. Tests were performed for a range of engine load, two engine speeds, varied air-fuel ratio and with a fixed ignition timing using a homogeneous, pre-vaporized fuel mixture system. The integrated mass of HC leaving the crevices from the end of combustion (the crank angle that the cumulative burn fraction reached 90%) to exhaust valve closing was taken to represent the potential contribution of the ring pack to the overall HC emissions; post-oxidation in the cylinder will consume some of this mass. Time-resolved exhaust HC concentration measurements were also performed, and the instantaneous exhaust HC mass flow rate was determined using the measured exhaust and cylinder pressure.
Technical Paper

Modeling Iso-octane HCCI Using CFD with Multi-Zone Detailed Chemistry; Comparison to Detailed Speciation Data Over a Range of Lean Equivalence Ratios

Multi-zone CFD simulations with detailed kinetics were used to model iso-octane HCCI experiments performed on a single-cylinder research engine. The modeling goals were to validate the method (multi-zone combustion modeling) and the reaction mechanism (LLNL 857 species iso-octane) by comparing model results to detailed exhaust speciation data, which was obtained with gas chromatography. The model is compared to experiments run at 1200 RPM and 1.35 bar boost pressure over an equivalence ratio range from 0.08 to 0.28. Fuel was introduced far upstream to ensure fuel and air homogeneity prior to entering the 13.8:1 compression ratio, shallow-bowl combustion chamber of this 4-stroke engine. The CFD grid incorporated a very detailed representation of the crevices, including the top-land ring crevice and head-gasket crevice. The ring crevice is resolved all the way into the ring pocket volume. The detailed grid was required to capture regions where emission species are formed and retained.
Technical Paper

Effects of EGR Components Along with Temperature and Equivalence Ratio on the Combustion of n-Heptane Fuel

Fundamental simulations in a quiescent cell under adiabatic conditions were made to understand the effect of temperature, equivalence ratio and the components of the recirculated exhaust gas, viz., CO2 and H2O, on the combustion of n-Heptane. Simulations were made in single phase in which evaporated n-Heptane was uniformly distributed in the domain. Computations were made for two different temperatures and four different EGR levels. CO2 or H2O or N2was used as EGR. It was found that the initiation of the main combustion process was primarily determined by two competing factors, i.e., the amount of initial OH concentration in the domain and the specific heat of the mixture. Further, initial OH concentration can be controlled by the manipulating the ambient temperature in the domain, and the specific heat capacity of the mixture via the mixture composition. In addition to these, the pre combustion and the subsequent post combustion can also be controlled via the equivalence ratio.
Technical Paper

1-D Modeling of Transient Engine Operations Using Data Generated by a CFD Code

Transient engine operations are modeled and simulated with a 1-D code (GT Power) using heat release and emission data computed by a 3-D CFD code (Kiva3). During each iteration step of a transient engine simulation, the 1-D code utilizes the 3-D data to interpolate the values for heat release and emissions. The 3-D CFD computations were performed for the compression and combustion stroke of strategically chosen engine operating points considering engine speed, torque and excess air. The 3-D inlet conditions were obtained from the 1-D code, which utilized 3-D heat release data from the previous 1-D unsteady computations. In most cases, only two different sets of 3-D input data are needed to interpolate the transient phase between two engine operating points. This keeps the computation time at a reasonable level. The results are demonstrated on the load response of a generator which is driven by a medium-speed diesel engine.
Journal Article

Pathline Analysis of Full-cycle Four-stroke HCCI Engine Combustion Using CFD and Multi-Zone Modeling

This paper investigates flow and combustion in a full-cycle simulation of a four-stroke, three-valve HCCI engine by visualizing the flow with pathlines. Pathlines trace massless particles in a transient flow field. In addition to visualization, pathlines are used here to trace the history, or evolution, of flow fields and species. In this study evolution is followed from the intake port through combustion. Pathline analysis follows packets of intake charge in time and space from induction through combustion. The local scalar fields traversed by the individual packets in terms of velocity magnitude, turbulence, species concentration and temperatures are extracted from the simulation results. The results show how the intake event establishes local chemical and thermal environments in-cylinder and how the species respond (chemically react) to the local field.
Technical Paper

Numerical Predictions of Diesel Flame Lift-off Length and Soot Distributions under Low Temperature Combustion Conditions

The lift-off length plays a significant role in spray combustion as it influences the air entrainment upstream of the lift-off location and hence the soot formation. Accurate prediction of lift-off length thus becomes a prerequisite for accurate soot prediction in lifted flames. In the present study, KIVA-3v coupled with CHEMKIN, as developed at the Engine Research Center (ERC), is used as the CFD model. Experimental data from the Sandia National Labs. is used for validating the model predictions of n-heptane lift-off lengths and soot formation details in a constant volume combustion chamber. It is seen that the model predictions, in terms of lift-off length and soot mass, agree well with the experimental results for low ambient density (14.8 kg/m3) cases with different EGR rates (21% O2 - 8% O2). However, for high density cases (30 kg/m3) with different EGR rates (15% O2 - 8% O2) disagreements were found.
Technical Paper

Combustion and Lift-Off Characteristics of n-Heptane Sprays Using Direct Numerical Simulations

Fundamental simulations using DNS type procedures were used to investigate the ignition, combustion characteristics and the lift-off trends of a spatially evolving turbulent liquid fuel jet. In particular, the spatially evolving n-Heptane spray injected in a two-dimensional rectangular domain with an engine like environment was investigated. The computational results were compared to the experimental observations from an optical engine as reported in the literature. It was found that an initial fuel rich combustion downstream of the spray tip is followed by diffusion combustion. Investigations were also made to understand the effects of injection velocity, ambient temperature and the droplet radius on the lift-off length. For each of these parameters three different values in a given range were chosen. For both injection velocity and droplet radius, an increase resulted in a near linear increase in the lift-off length.
Technical Paper

Global Optimization of a Two-Pulse Fuel Injection Strategy for a Diesel Engine Using Interpolation and a Gradient-Based Method

A global optimization method has been developed for an engine simulation code and utilized in the search of optimal fuel injection strategies. This method uses a Lagrange interpolation function which interpolates engine output data generated at the vertices and the intermediate points of the input parameters. This interpolation function is then used to find a global minimum over the entire parameter set, which in turn becomes the starting point of a CFD-based optimization. The CFD optimization is based on a steepest descent method with an adaptive cost function, where the line searches are performed with a fast-converging backtracking algorithm. The adaptive cost function is based on the penalty method, where the penalty coefficient is increased after every line search. The parameter space is normalized and, thus, the optimization occurs over the unit cube in higher-dimensional space.
Technical Paper

Investigation of MicroFlow Machining Effects on Diesel Injector Spray Characteristics

An investigation of the effect of microflow machining on the spray characteristics of diesel injectors was undertaken. A collection of four VCO injector tips were tested prior to and after an abrasive flow process using a high viscosity media. The injector nozzles were tested on a spray fixture. Rate of injection measurements and high-speed digital images were used for the quantification of the air entrainment rate. Comparisons of the spray characteristics and A/F ratios were made for conditions of before and after the abrasive flow process. Results showed a significant decrease in the injection-to-injection variability and improvement of the spray symmetry. A link between the quantity of air entrained and potential differences in spray plume internal chemical composition and temperature is proposed via equilibrium calculations.
Technical Paper

Improvement of Neural Network Accuracy for Engine Simulations

Neural networks have been used for engine computations in the recent past. One reason for using neural networks is to capture the accuracy of multi-dimensional CFD calculations or experimental data while saving computational time, so that system simulations can be performed within a reasonable time frame. This paper describes three methods to improve upon neural network predictions. Improvement is demonstrated for in-cylinder pressure predictions in particular. The first method incorporates a physical combustion model within the transfer function of the neural network, so that the network predictions incorporate physical relationships as well as mathematical models to fit the data. The second method shows how partitioning the data into different regimes based on different physical processes, and training different networks for different regimes, improves the accuracy of predictions.
Technical Paper

Optimization of Diesel Engine Operating Parameters Using Neural Networks

Neural networks are useful tools for optimization studies since they are very fast, so that while capturing the accuracy of multi-dimensional CFD calculations or experimental data, they can be run numerous times as required by many optimization techniques. This paper describes how a set of neural networks trained on a multi-dimensional CFD code to predict pressure, temperature, heat flux, torque and emissions, have been used by a genetic algorithm in combination with a hill-climbing type algorithm to optimize operating parameters of a diesel engine over the entire speed-torque map of the engine. The optimized parameters are mass of fuel injected per cycle, shape of the injection profile for dual split injection, start of injection, EGR level and boost pressure. These have been optimized for minimum emissions. Another set of neural networks have been trained to predict the optimized parameters, based on the speed-torque point of the engine.
Technical Paper

Effect of Fuel Composition on Combustion and Detailed Chemical/Physical Characteristics of Diesel Exhaust

An experimental study was performed to investigate the effect of fuel composition on combustion, gaseous emissions, and detailed chemical composition and size distributions of diesel particulate matter (PM) in a modern heavy-duty diesel engine with the use of the enhanced full-dilution tunnel system of the Engine Research Center (ERC) of the UW-Madison. Detailed description of this system can be found in our previous reports [1,2]. The experiments were carried out on a single-cylinder 2.3-liter D.I. diesel engine equipped with an electronically controlled unit injection system. The operating conditions of the engine followed the California Air Resources Board (CARB) 8-mode test cycle. The fuels used in the current study include baseline No. 2 diesel (Fuel A: sulfur content = 352 ppm), ultra low sulfur diesel (Fuel B: sulfur content = 14 ppm), and Fisher-Tropsch (F-T) diesel (sulfur content = 0 ppm).