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Technical Paper

Advanced Thermal Management for Internal Combustion Engines - Valve Design, Component Testing and Block Redesign

Advanced engine cooling systems can enhance the combustion environment, increase fuel efficiency, and reduce tailpipe emissions with less parasitic engine load. The introduction of computer controlled electro-mechanical valves, radiator fans, and coolant pumps require mathematic models and real time algorithms to implement intelligent thermal control strategies for prescribed engine temperature tracking. Smart butterfly valves can replace the traditional wax-based thermostat to control the coolant flow based on both engine temperature and operating conditions. The electric water pump and radiator fan replace the mechanically driven components to reduce unnecessary engine loads at high speeds and provide better cooling at low speeds.
Technical Paper

Coolant Flow Control Strategies for Automotive Thermal Management Systems

The automotive thermal management system is responsible for maintaining engine and passenger compartment temperatures, which promote normal combustion events and passenger comfort. This system traditionally circulates a water ethylene glycol mixture through the engine block using a belt-driven water pump, wax pellet thermostat valve, radiator with electric fan, and heater core. Although vehicle cooling system performance has been reliable and acceptable for many decades, advances in mechatronics have permitted upgrades to powertrain and chassis components. In a similar spirit, the introduction of a variable speed electric water pump and servo-motor thermostat valve allows ECU-based thermal control. This paper examines the integration of an electric water pump and intelligent thermostat valve to satisfy the engine's basic cooling requirements, minimize combustion chamber fluctuations due to engine speed changes, and permit quick heating of a cold block.
Technical Paper

Smart Thermostat and Coolant Pump Control for Engine Thermal Management Systems

The introduction of mechatronic components into thermal-mechanical systems provides an opportunity to apply real time control strategies for enhanced engine performance. The traditional automotive thermal management system contains the engine, thermostat, air cooled radiator, and centrifugal pump driven by the crankshaft belt. A servo-motor valve and pump may be inserted into the vehicle's heating/cooling system to regulate the coolant flow with the engine control unit. To study these dual actuators, a scale experimental cooling system has been investigated. This automotive inspired thermal system contains a heater, smart thermostat valve, radiator, and variable speed electric pump. A lumped parameter model has been developed to describe the system's behavioral response and establish the basis for temperature regulation. Real time control algorithms are introduced for the synchronous regulation of the valve and pump.
Technical Paper

Modeling and Validation of Automotive “Smart” Thermal Management System Architectures

The functionality and performance of an internal combustion (spark or compression ignition) engine's thermal management system can be significantly enhanced through the application of mechatronics technology. The replacement of the conventional thermostat valve and mechanical coolant pump in the heating/cooling system by a servo-motor driven smart valve and variable flow pump permits powertrain control module regulated coolant flow through the engine block and radiator. In this paper, a dynamic mathematical model will be created for a 4.6L spark ignition engine to analyze various thermal management system architectures. The designs to be studied include the factory configuration, a smart valve upgrade, and the smart valve combined with a variable flow pump and radiator fan. Representative results are presented and discussed to demonstrate improvements in the engine warm-up time, temperature tracking, and component power consumption.
Journal Article

An Engine Thermal Management System Design for Military Ground Vehicle - Simultaneous Fan, Pump and Valve Control

The pursuit of greater fuel economy in internal combustion engines requires the optimization of all subsystems including thermal management. The reduction of cooling power required by the electromechanical coolant pump, radiator fan(s), and thermal valve demands real time control strategies. To maintain the engine temperature within prescribed limits for different operating conditions, the continual estimation of the heat removal needs and the synergistic operation of the cooling system components must be accomplished. The reductions in thermal management power consumption can be achieved by avoiding unnecessary overcooling efforts which are often accommodated by extreme thermostat valve positions. In this paper, an optimal nonlinear controller for a military M-ATV engine cooling system will be presented. The prescribed engine coolant temperature will be tracked while minimizing the pump, fan(s), and valve power usage.
Technical Paper

Optimization of a Military Ground Vehicle Engine Cooling System Heat Exchanger - Modeling and Size Scaling

Heat rejection in ground vehicle propulsion systems remains a challenge given variations in powertrain configurations, driving cycles, and ambient conditions as well as space constraints and available power budgets. An optimization strategy is proposed for engine radiator geometry size scaling to minimize the cooling system power consumption while satisfying both the heat removal rate requirement and the radiator dimension size limitation. A finite difference method (FDM) based on a heat exchanger model is introduced and utilized in the optimization design. The optimization technique searches for the best radiator core dimension solution over the design space, subject to different constraints. To validate the proposed heat exchanger model and optimization algorithm, a heavy duty military truck engine cooling system is investigated.
Technical Paper

Double-Pass vs. Single-Pass Radiators for Automotive Application

Experimental evaluations were made of single- and double-pass heat exchangers for automotive application. The study was concerned primarily with the effect of the working parameters, air and water mass flow rates and the inlet water temperature, on the average and local heat transfer coefficients. An automotive radiator having two water-side passes was fabricated and tested. The experimental results were compared with those for a single-pass unit. The study showed that the overall coefficient of heat transfer of the single-pass radiator was higher than that of the double-pass radiator.
Technical Paper

Thermal Modeling of Engine Components for Temperature Prediction and Fluid Flow Regulation

The operation of internal combustion engines depend on the successful management of the fuel, spark, and cooling processes to ensure acceptable performance, emission levels, and fuel economy. Two different thermal management systems exist for engines - air and liquid cooling. Smaller displacement utility and spark ignition aircraft engines typically feature air cooled systems which rely on forced convection over the exterior engine surfaces. In contrast, passenger/light-duty engines use a water-ethylene glycol mixture which circulates through the radiator, water pump, and heater core. The regulation of the overall engine temperature, based on the coolant's temperature, has been achieved with the thermostat valve and (electric) radiator fan. To provide insight into the thermal behavior of the cylinder-head assembly for enhanced cooling system operation, a dynamic model must exist.
Technical Paper

Conceptualization and Implementation of a Scalable Powertrain, Modular Energy Storage and an Alternative Cooling System on a Student Concept Vehicle

The Deep Orange program immerses automotive engineering students into the world of an OEM as part of their 2-year graduate education. In support of developing the program’s seventh vehicle concept, the students studied the sponsoring brand essence, conducted market research, and made a heuristic assessment of competitor vehicles. The upfront research lead to the definition of target customers and setting vehicle level targets that were broken down into requirements to develop various vehicle sub-systems. The powertrain team was challenged to develop a scalable propulsion concept enabled by a common vehicle architecture that allowed future customers to select (at the point of purchase) among various levels of electrification best suiting their needs and personal desires. Four different configurations were identified and developed: all-electric, two plug-in hybrid electric configurations, and an internal combustion engine only.
Technical Paper

An Innovative Electric Motor Cooling System for Hybrid Vehicles - Model and Test

Enhanced electric motor performance in transportation vehicles can improve system reliability and durability over rigorous operating cycles. The design of innovative heat rejection strategies in electric motors can minimize cooling power consumption and associated noise generation while offering configuration flexibility. This study investigates an innovative electric motor cooling strategy through bench top thermal testing on an emulated electric motor. The system design includes passive (e.g., heat pipes) cooling as the primary heat rejection pathway with supplemental conventional cooling using a variable speed coolant pump and radiator fan(s). The integrated thermal structure, “cradle”, transfers heat from the motor shell towards an end plate for heat dissipation to the ambient surroundings or transmission to an external thermal bus to remote heat exchanger.
Technical Paper

Experimental Analysis of a Multiple Radiator Cooling System with Computer Controlled Flow Rates

The automotive cooling system configuration has remained fixed for many decades with a large radiator plus fan, coolant pump, and bypass valve. To reduce cooling system power consumption, the introduction of multiple computer-controlled heat exchangers may offer some benefits. A paradigm shift from a single large radiator, sized for maximum load, to n-small radiators with individual flow control valves should allow fine tuning of the heat rejection needs to minimize power. In this project, a series of experimental scenarios featuring two identical parallel radiators have been studied for low thermal load engine cooling (e.g., idling) in ground transportation applications. For high thermal load scenarios using two radiators, the fans required between 1120 - 3600 W to maintain the system about the coolant reference temperature of 85oC.