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Technical Paper

Space Life Support from the Cellular Perspective

Determining the fundamental role of gravity in vital biological systems in space is one of six science and research areas that provides the philosophical underpinning for why NASA exists. The study of cells, tissues, and microorganisms in a spaceflight environment holds the promise of answering multiple intriguing questions about how gravity affects living systems. To enable these studies, specimens must be maintained in an environment similar to that used in a laboratory. Cell culture studies under normal laboratory conditions involve maintaining a highly specialized environment with the necessary temperature, humidity control, nutrient, and gas exchange conditions. These same cell life support conditions must be provided by the International Space Station (ISS) Cell Culture Unit (CCU) in the unique environment of space. The CCU is a perfusion-based system that must function in microgravity, at unit gravity (1g) on earth, and from 0.1g up to 2g aboard the ISS centrifuge rotor.
Technical Paper

Prediction of the Knock Limit and Viable Operating Range for a Homogeneous-Charge Compression-Ignition (HCCI) Engine

A method is presented for predicting the viable operating range of homogeneous-charge compression-ignition (HCCI) engines. A fundamental criterion for predicting HCCI knock is described and used to predict the minimum air/fuel ratio (and hence maximum torque) available from the engine. The lean (misfire) limit is computed using a modification of the multi-zone method of Aceves et al. [1]. Numerical improvements are described which allow even very complex fuel chemistry to be rapidly modeled on a standard PC. The viable operating range for an HCCI engine burning a primary reference fuel (PRF 95) is predicted and compared with literature experimental data. The new ability to accurately predict the operating range for any given HCCI engine/fuel combination should considerably simplify the tasks of designing a robust engine and identifying suitable fuels for HCCI.
Technical Paper

Increased Power Density via Variable Compression/Displacement And Turbocharging Using The Alvar-Cycle Engine

This paper presents the analysis and design of a variable compression-ratio and displacement engine concept - the Alvar Cycle using a four-stroke engine-performance simulation. The Alvar-Cycle engine uses secondary pistons which reciprocate in auxiliary chambers housed in the cylinder head, at adjustable phase-angle differences from the primary pistons. The phase difference provides both the variable total engine displacement and compression ratio. Results indicate that the Alvar engine can operate at higher power density via a combination of higher intake boost and lower compression ratio to avoid knock at high loads, and capture the better thermal efficiency at higher compression ratios at part loads.
Technical Paper

Research Alliances, A Strategy for Progress

In today's business climate rapid access to, and implementation of, new technology is essential to enhance competitive advantage. In the past, universities have been used for research contracts, but to fully utilize the intellectual resources of education institutions, it is essential to approach these relationships from a new basis: alliance. Alliances permit both parties to become active participants and achieve mutually beneficial goals. This paper will examine the drivers and challenges for industrial -- university alliances from both the industrial and academic perspectives.
Technical Paper

Characterization of Knock in a Spark-Ignition Engine

Spark-ignition engine knock was characterized in terms of when during the engine cycle and combustion process knock occurred and its magnitude or intensity. Cylinder pressure data from a large number of successive individual cycles were generated from a single-cylinder engine of hemispherical chamber design over a range of operating conditions where knock occurred in some or all of these cycles. Mean values and distributions of following parameters were quantified: knock occurrence crank angle, knock intensity, combustion rate and the end-gas thermodynamic state. These parameters were determined from the cylinder pressure data on an individual cycle basis using a mass-burn-rate analysis. The effects of engine operating variables on these parameters were studied, and correlations between these parameters were examined.
Technical Paper

Spacelab Neurovestibular Hardware

A set of devices for measurement of human balance orientation and eye movements in weightlessness was developed for neurovestibular experiments on Spacelab. The experiments involve astronaut motion, limb position changes, and moving visual fields, measurements are made of eye movements, muscular activity and orientation perception. This joint US/Canadian research program represent a group of closely related experiments designed to investigate space motion sickness, any associated changes in otolith-mediated responses occurring during weightlessness, and the continuation of changes to postflight conditions. The otoliths are a component of the vestibular apparatus which is located in the middle ear. It is responsible for maintaining the body's balance. Gravitational pull on the otoliths causes them to constantly appraise the nervous system of the position of the head with respect to the direction of gravity.
Technical Paper

Predicting the Effects of Air and Coolant Temperature, Deposits, Spark Timing and Speed on Knock in Spark Ignition Engines

The prediction of knock onset in spark-ignition engines requires a chemical model for the autoignition of the hydrocarbon fuel-air mixture, and a description of the unburned end-gas thermal state. Previous studies have shown that a reduced chemistry model developed by Keck et al. adequately predicts the initiation of autoignition. However, the combined effects of heat transfer and compression on the state of the end gas have not been thoroughly investigated. The importance of end-gas heat transfer was studied with the objective of improving the ability of our knock model to predict knock onset over a wide range of engine conditions. This was achieved through changing the thermal environment of the end gas by either varying the inlet air temperature or the coolant temperature. Results show that there is significant heating of the in-cylinder charge during intake and a substantial part of the compression process.
Technical Paper

Autoignition of Alcohols and Ethers in a Rapid Compression Machine

The autoignition characteristics of methanol, ethanol and MTBE (methyl tert-butyl ether) have been investigated in a rapid compression machine at pressures in the range 20-40 atm and temperatures within 750-1000 K. All three oxygenated fuels tested show higher autoignition temperatures than paraffins, a trend consistent with the high octane number of these fuels. The autoignition delay time for methanol was slightly lower than predicted values using reported reaction mechanisms. However, the experimental and measured values for the activation energy are in very good agreement around 44 kcal/mol. The measured activation energy for ethanol autoignition is in good agreement with previous shock tube results (31 kcal/mol), although ignition times predicted by the shock tube correlation are a factor of three lower than the measured values. The measured activation energy for MTBE, 41.4 kcal/mol, was significantly higher than the value previously observed in shock tubes (28.1 kcal/mol).
Technical Paper


THE autoignition characteristics of several fuels under various conditions of mixture strength, compression ratio, and temperature have been studied by means of a rapid-compression machine. The behaviors of a knock inhibitor, tetraethyl lead, and a knock inducer, ethyl nitrite, have also been studied. Simultaneous records of pressure, volume, and the inflammation have been obtained. These records show the diverse aspects of the autoignition phenomenon and indicate, among other things, according to the authors, that a comparison of the detonating tendencies of fuels must include not only a consideration of the length of the delay period but also an evaluation of the rate of pressure rise during autoignition. Physical interpretations of the data are presented but chemical interpretations have been avoided. The work was exploratory in nature. The authors hope that the results will stimulate activity in this important branch of combustion research.
Technical Paper

Performance Assessment of Extended Stroke Spark Ignition Engine

The performance of an extended stroke spark ignition engine has been assessed by cycle simulation. The base engine is a modern turbo-charged 4-stroke passenger car spark-ignition engine with 10:1 compression ratio. A complex crank mechanism is used so that the intake stroke remains the same while the expansion-to-intake stroke ratio (SR) is varied by changing the crank geometry. The study is limited to the thermodynamic aspect of the extended stroke; the changes in friction, combustion characteristic, and other factors are not included. When the combustion is not knock limited, an efficiency gain of more than 10 percent is obtained for SR = 1.5. At low load, however, there is an efficiency lost due to over-expansion. At the same NIMEP, the extended stroke renders the engine more resistant to knock. At SR of 1.8, the engine is free from knock up to 14 bar NIMEP at 2000 rpm. Under knocking condition, the required spark retard to prevent knocking is less with the extended stroke.
Technical Paper

Dual-Fuel Gasoline-Alcohol Engines for Heavy Duty Trucks: Lower Emissions, Flexible-Fuel Alternative to Diesel Engines

Long-haul and other heavy-duty trucks, presently almost entirely powered by diesel fuel, face challenges meeting worldwide needs for greatly reducing nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions. Dual-fuel gasoline-alcohol engines could potentially provide a means to cost-effectively meet this need at large scale in the relatively near term. They could also provide reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. These spark ignition (SI) flexible fuel engines can provide operation over a wide fuel range from mainly gasoline use to 100% alcohol use. The alcohol can be ethanol or methanol. Use of stoichiometric operation and a three-way catalytic converter can reduce NOx by around 90% relative to emissions from diesel engines with state of the art exhaust treatment.
Technical Paper

Real World Performance of an Onboard Gasoline/Ethanol Separation System to Enable Knock Suppression Using an Octane-On-Demand Fuel System

Higher compression ratio and turbocharging, with engine downsizing can enable significant gains in fuel economy but require engine operating conditions that cause engine knock under high load. Engine knock can be avoided by supplying higher-octane fuel under such high load conditions. This study builds on previous MIT papers investigating Octane-On-Demand (OOD) to enable a higher efficiency, higher-boost higher compression-ratio engine. The high-octane fuel for OOD can be obtained through On-Board-Separation (OBS) of alcohol blended gasoline. Fuel from the primary fuel tank filled with commercially available gasoline that contains 10% by volume ethanol (E10) is separated by an organic membrane pervaporation process that produces a 30 to 90% ethanol fuel blend for use when high octane is needed. In addition to previous work, this paper combines modeling of the OBS system with passenger car and medium-duty truck fuel consumption and octane requirements for various driving cycles.
Technical Paper

Knock in Spark Ignition Engines

The knocking characteristics of several fuels are studied using a single cylinder test engine with variations in key engine operating parameters. Compression ratio, spark advance, fuel equivalence ratio, exhaust gas recirculation, engine speed, charge inlet pressure and charge inlet temperature were varied to yield a range of engine cylinder pressure-temperature histories as the base for this study. The fuels studied include three reference fuels containing isooctane and heptane with isooctane volume percents of 80, 90 and 100. Two wide boiling range gasolines were also studied. A number of empirical relationships for autoignition times of isooctane and heptane blends are employed in conjunction with the experimentally obtained pressure-temperature histories to predict onset of knock. The accuracies of the predictions with respect to the experimentally determined knock points are discussed.
Technical Paper

Anthropometric and Blood Flow Characteristics Leading to EVA Hand Injury

The aim of this study was to explore if fingernail delamination injury following EMU glove use may be caused by compression-induced blood flow occlusion in the finger. During compression tests, finger blood flow decreased more than 60%, however this occurred more rapidly for finger pad compression (4 N) than for fingertips (10 N). A pressure bulb compression test resulted in 50% and 45% decreased blood flow at 100 mmHg and 200 mmHg, respectively. These results indicate that the finger pad pressure required to articulate stiff gloves is more likely to contribute to injury than the fingertip pressure associated with tight fitting gloves.
Technical Paper

The Anatomy of Knock

The combustion process after auto-ignition is investigated. Depending on the non-uniformity of the end gas, auto-ignition could initiate a flame, produce pressure waves that excite the engine structure (acoustic knock), or result in detonation (normal or developing). For the “acoustic knock” mode, a knock intensity (KI) is defined as the pressure oscillation amplitude. The KI values over different cycles under a fixed operating condition are observed to have a log-normal distribution. When the operating condition is changed (over different values of λ, EGR, and spark timing), the mean (μ) of log (KI/GIMEP) decreases linearly with the correlation-based ignition delay calculated using the knock-point end gas condition of the mean cycle. The standard deviation σ of log(KI/GIMEP) is approximately a constant, at 0.63. The values of μ and σ thus allow a statistical description of knock from the deterministic calculation of the ignition delay using the mean cycle properties
Technical Paper

Observed Differences in Lane Departure Warning Responses during Single-Task and Dual-Task Driving: A Secondary Analysis of Field Driving Data

Advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) are an increasingly common feature of modern vehicles. The influence of such systems on driver behavior, particularly in regards to the effects of intermittent warning systems, is sparsely studied to date. This paper examines dynamic changes in physiological and operational behavior during lane departure warnings (LDW) in two commercial automotive systems utilizing on-road data. Alerts from the systems, one using auditory and the other haptic LDWs, were monitored during highway driving conditions. LDW events were monitored during periods of single-task driving and dual-task driving. Dual-task periods consisted of the driver interacting with the vehicle’s factory infotainment system or a smartphone to perform secondary visual-manual (e.g., radio tuning, contact dialing, etc.) or auditory-vocal (e.g. destination address entry, contact dialing, etc.) tasks.
Technical Paper

A Framework for Robust Driver Gaze Classification

The challenge of developing a robust, real-time driver gaze classification system is that it has to handle difficult edge cases that arise in real-world driving conditions: extreme lighting variations, eyeglass reflections, sunglasses and other occlusions. We propose a single-camera end-toend framework for classifying driver gaze into a discrete set of regions. This framework includes data collection, semi-automated annotation, offline classifier training, and an online real-time image processing pipeline that classifies the gaze region of the driver. We evaluate an implementation of each component on various subsets of a large onroad dataset. The key insight of our work is that robust driver gaze classification in real-world conditions is best approached by leveraging the power of supervised learning to generalize over the edge cases present in large annotated on-road datasets.
Technical Paper

Additional Findings on the Multi-Modal Demands of “Voice-Command” Interfaces

This paper presents the results of a study of how people interacted with a production voice-command based interface while driving on public roadways. Tasks included phone contact calling, full address destination entry, and point-of-interest (POI) selection. Baseline driving and driving while engaging in multiple-levels of an auditory-vocal cognitive reference task and manual radio tuning were used as comparison points. Measures included self-reported workload, task performance, physiological arousal, glance behavior, and vehicle control for an analysis sample of 48 participants (gender balanced across ages 21-68). Task analysis and glance measures confirm earlier findings that voice-command interfaces do not always allow the driver to keep their hands on the wheel and eyes on the road, as some assume.
Technical Paper

New Demands from an Older Population: An Integrated Approach to Defining the Future of Older Driver Safety

The nearly 77 million baby boomers, born between 1946 and 1964, can say that they are the automobile generation. Now turning 60 one every seven seconds, what are the new safety challenges and opportunities posed by the next generation of older adults? This paper presents a modified Haddon matrix to identify key product development, design and liability issues confronting the automobile industry and related stakeholders. The industry is now at a critical juncture to address the development of key technological innovations as well as the changing policy and liability environments being reshaped by an aging population.
Technical Paper

Phenomena that Determine Knock Onset in Spark-Ignition Engines

Experiments were carried out to collect in-cylinder pressure data and microphone signals from a single-cylinder test engine using spark timingsbefore, at, and after knock onset for toluene reference fuels. The objective was to gain insight into the phenomena that determine knock onset, detected by an external microphone. In particular, the study examines how the end-gas autoignition process changes as the engine's spark timing is advanced through the borderline knock limit into the engine's knocking regime. Fast Fourier transforms (FFT) and bandpass filtering techniques were used to process the recorded cylinder pressure data to determine knock intensities for each cycle. Two characteristic pressure oscillation frequencies were detected: a peak just above 6 kHz and a range of peaks in the 15-22 kHz range. The microphone data shows that the audible knock signal has the same 6 kHz peak.