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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

Liquid Fuel Transport Mechanisms into the Cylinder of a Firing Port-Injected SI Engine During Start Up

The occurrence of liquid fuel in the cylinder of automotive internal combustion engines is believed to be an important source of exhaust hydrocarbon (HC) emissions, especially during the warm-up process following an engine start up. In this study a Phase Doppler Particle Analyzer (PDPA) has been used in a transparent flow visualization combustion engine in order to investigate the phenomena which govern the transport of liquid fuel into the cylinder during a simulated engine start up process. Using indolene fuel, the engine was started up from room temperature and run for 90 sec on each start up simulation. The size and velocity of the liquid fuel droplets entering the cylinder were measured as a function of time and crank angle position during these start up processes. The square-piston transparent engine used gave full optical access to the cylinder head region, so that these droplet characteristics could be measured in the immediate vicinity of the intake valve.
Technical Paper

Investigation of the Dilution Process for Measurement of Particulate Matter from Spark-Ignition Engines

Measurements of particulate matter (PM) from spark ignition (SI) engine exhaust using dilution tunnels will become more prevalent as emission standards are tightened. Hence, a study of the dilution process was undertaken in order to understand how various dilution related parameters affect the accuracy with which PM sizes and concentrations can be determined. A SI and a compression ignition (CI) engine were separately used to examine parameters of the dilution process; the present work discusses the results in the context of SI exhaust dilution. A Scanning Mobility Particle Sizer (SMPS) was used to measure the size distribution, number density, and volume fraction of PM. Temperature measurements in the exhaust pipe and dilution tunnel reveal the degree of mixing between exhaust and dilution air, the effect of flowrate on heat transfer from undiluted and diluted exhaust to the environment, and the minimum permissible dilution ratio for a maximum sample temperature of 52°C.
Technical Paper

Liquid Fuel Visualization Using Laser-Induced Fluoresence During Cold Start

The presence of liquid fuel inside the engine cylinder is believed to be a strong contributor to the high levels of hydrocarbon emissions from spark ignition (SI) engines during the warm-up period. Quantifying and determining the fate of the liquid fuel that enters the cylinder is the first step in understanding the process of emissions formation. This work uses planar laser induced fluorescence (PLIF) to visualize the liquid fuel present in the cylinder. The fluorescing compounds in indolene, and mixtures of iso-octane with dopants of different boiling points (acetone and 3-pentanone) were used to trace the behavior of different volatility components. Images were taken of three different planes through the engine intersecting the intake valve region. A closed valve fuel injection strategy was used, as this is the strategy most commonly used in practice. Background subtraction and masking were both performed to reduce the effect of any spurious fluorescence.
Technical Paper

A Look at the Automotive-Turbine Regenerator System and Proposals to Improve Performance and Reduce Cost

The adoption of turbine engines for automotive power plants has been hampered by the high cost, high leakage and high wear rate of present designs of ceramic-matrix regenerators. Proposals are made and analyzed here for design directions to achieve substantial improvements in all three areas. These include lower-cost extruded and pressed matrices; and clamping seals coupled with incremental movement of the rotary-regenerator matrix.
Technical Paper

Predicting Product Manufacturing Costs from Design Attributes: A Complexity Theory Approach

This paper contains both theorems and correlations based on the idea that there is a uniform metric for measuring the complexity of mechanical parts. The metric proposed is the logarithm of dimension divided by tolerance. The theorems prove that, on the average, for a given manufacturing process, the time to fabricate is simply proportional to this metric. We show corrleations for manual turning (machine lathe process), manual milling (machine milling process), and the lay-up of composite stringers. In each case the accuracy of the time estimate is as good as that of traditional cost estimation methods, but the effort is much less. The coefficient for composite lay-up compares well to that obtained from basic physiological data (Fitts Law).
Technical Paper

Development of a Time and Space Resolved Sampling Probe Diagnostic for Engine Exhaust Hydrocarbons

In order to understand how unburned hydrocarbons emerge from SI engines and, in particular, how non-fuel hydrocarbons are formed and oxidized, a new gas sampling technique has been developed. A sampling unit, based on a combination of techniques used in the Fast Flame Ionization Detector (FFID) and wall-mounted sampling valves, was designed and built to capture a sample of exhaust gas during a specific period of the exhaust process and from a specific location within the exhaust port. The sampling unit consists of a transfer tube with one end in the exhaust port and the other connected to a three-way valve that leads, on one side, to a FFID and, on the other, to a vacuum chamber with a high-speed solenoid valve. Exhaust gas, drawn by the pressure drop into the vacuum chamber, impinges on the face of the solenoid valve and flows radially outward.
Technical Paper

3D Vortex Simulation of Intake Flow in a Port-Cylinder with a Valve Seat and a Moving Piston

A Lagrangian random vortex-boundary element method has been developed for the simulation of unsteady incompressible flow inside three-dimensional domains with time-dependent boundaries, similar to IC engines. The solution method is entirely grid-free in the fluid domain and eliminates the difficult task of volumetric meshing of the complex engine geometry. Furthermore, due to the Lagrangian evaluation of the convective processes, numerical viscosity is virtually removed; thus permitting the direct simulation of flow at high Reynolds numbers. In this paper, a brief description of the numerical methodology is given, followed by an example of induction flow in an off-centered port-cylinder assembly with a harmonically driven piston and a valve seat situated directly below the port. The predicted flow is shown to resemble the flow visualization results of a laboratory experiment, despite the crude approximation used to represent the geometry.
Technical Paper

The Effects of Crevices on the Engine-Out Hydrocarbon Emissions in SI Engines

To understand the effects of crevices on the engine-out hydrocarbon emissions, a series of engine experiments was carried out with different piston crevice volumes and with simulated head gasket crevices. The engine-out HC level was found to be modestly sensitive to the piston crevice size in both the warmed-up and the cold engines, but more sensitive to the crevice volume in the head gasket region. A substantial decrease in HC in the cold-to-warm-up engine transition was observed and is attributed mostly to the change in port oxidation.
Technical Paper

Liquid Gasoline Behavior in the Engine Cylinder of a SI Engine

The liquid fuel entry into the cylinder and its subsequent behavior through the combustion cycle were observed by a high speed CCD camera in a transparent engine. The videos were taken with the engine firing under cold conditions in a simulated start-up process, at 1,000 RPM and intake manifold pressure of 0.5 bar. The variables examined were the injector geometry, injector type (normal and air-assisted), injection timing (open- and closed-valve injection), and injected air-to-fuel ratios. The visualization results show several important and unexpected features of the in-cylinder fuel behavior: 1) strip-atomization of the fuel film by the intake flow; 2) squeezing of fuel film between the intake valve and valve seat at valve closing to form large droplets; 3)deposition of liquid fuel as films distributed on the intake valve and head region. Some of the liquid fuel survives combustion into the next cycle.
Technical Paper

Effect of Engine Operating Parameters on Hydrocarbon Oxidation in the Exhaust Port and Runner of a Spark-Ignited Engine

The effect of engine operating parameters (speed, spark timing, and fuel-air equivalence ratio [Φ]) on hydrocarbon (HC) oxidation within the cylinder and exhaust system is examined using propane or isooctane fuel. Quench gas (CO2) is introduced at two locations in the exhaust system (exhaust valve or port exit) to stop the oxidation process. Increasing the speed from 1500 to 2500 RPM at MBT spark timing decreases the total, cylinder-exit HC emissions by ∼50% while oxidation in the exhaust system remains at 40% for both fuels. For propane fuel at 1500 rpm, increasing Φ from 0.9 (fuel lean) to 1.1 (fuel rich) reduces oxidation in the exhaust system from 42% to 26%; at 2500 RPM, exhaust system oxidation decreases from 40% to approximately 0% for Φ = 0.9 and 1.1, respectively. Retarded spark increases oxidation in the cylinder and exhaust system for both fuels. Decreases in total HC emissions are accompanied by increased olefinic content and atmospheric reactivity.
Technical Paper

Flame Shape Determination Using an Optical-Fiber Spark Plug and a Head-Gasket Ionization Probe

A method for determining the flame contour based on the flame arrival time at the fiber optic (FO) spark plug and at the head gasket ionization probe (IP) locations has been developed. The experimental data were generated in a single-cylinder Ricardo Hydra spark-ignition engine. The head gasket IP, constructed from a double-sided copper-clad circuit board, detects the flame arrival time at eight equally spaced locations at the top of the cylinder liner. Three other IP's were also installed in the cylinder head to provide additional intermediate data on flame location and arrival time. The FO spark plug consists of a standard spark plug with eight symmetrically spaced optical fibers located in the ground casing of the plug. The cylinder pressure was recorded simultaneously with the eleven IP signals and the eight optical signals using a high-speed PC-based data acquisition system.
Technical Paper

Visualization of Mixture Preparation in a Port-Fuel Injection Engine During Engine Warm-up

The fuel injection process in the port of a firing 4-valve SI engine at part load and 25°C head temperature was observed by a high speed video camera. Fuel was injected when the valve was closed. The reverse blow-down flow when the intake valve opens has been identified as an important factor in the mixture preparation process because it not only alters the thermal environment of the intake port, but also strip-atomizes the liquid film at the vicinity of the intake valve and carries the droplets away from the engine. In a series of “fuel-on” experiments, the fuel injected in the current cycle was observed to influence the fuel delivery to the engine in the subsequent cycles.
Technical Paper

M.I.T. Stirling-Cycle Heat Transfer Apparatus

The paper describes the design and construction of a two cylinder apparatus to measure heat transfer under conditions of oscillating pressure and oscillating flow such as found in Stirling-cycle machines. The apparatus consists of two large single stage air compressors joined by a rigid drive shaft between the two crank shafts. The compressors are 27.94 cm (11-in) diameter by 22.86 cm (9-in) stroke. The apparatus is powered by a 25 HP variable speed DC motor. Belts and a jack shaft provide wide speed ranges. The test section, which is connected between the compressor cylinders, is a 44.45 mm (1.75-in) diameter tube and about 254 cm (100-in) long. The test section is configured for measuring wall heat flux, and gas pressure as a function of time. An LDV system is being installed for measurement of gas velocity as a function of time and position. A fast response micro thermocouple measures gas temperature as a function of time and position.
Technical Paper

A CAD-Driven Flexible Forming System for Three-Dimensional Sheet Metal Parts

A novel system for the forming of three dimensional sheet metal parts is described that can form a variety of part shapes without the need for fixed tooling, and given only geometry (CAD) information about the desired part. The central elements of this system are a tooling concept based on a programmable discrete die surface and closed-loop shape control. The former give the process the degrees of freedom to change shape rapidly, and the latter is used to insure that the correct shape is formed with a minimum of forming trials. A 540 kN (60 ton) lab press has been constructed with a 0.3 m (12 in) square pair of discrete tools that can be rapidly re-shaped between forming trials. The shape control system uses measured part shapes to determine a shape error and to correct the tooling shape. This correction is based on a unique “Deformation Transfer Function” approach using a spatial frequency decomposition of the surface.
Technical Paper

Time Resolved Measurements of Exhaust Composition and Flow Rate in a Wankel Engine

Measurements were made of exhaust histories of the following species: unburned hydrocarbons (HC), carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, oxygen, and nitric oxide (NO). The measurements show that the exhaust flow can be divided into two distinct phases: a leading gas low in HC and high in NO followed by a trailing gas high in HC and low in NO. Calculations of time resolved equivalence ratio throughout the exhaust process show no evidence of a stratified combustion. The exhaust mass flow rate is time resolved by forcing the flow to be locally quasi-steady at an orifice placed in the exhaust pipe. The results with the quasi-steady assumption are shown to be consistent with the measurements. Predictions are made of time resolved mass flow rate which compare favorably to the experimental data base. The composition and flow histories provide sufficient information to calculate the time resolved flow rates of the individual species measured.
Technical Paper

Modeling the Spark Ignition Engine Warm-Up Process to Predict Component Temperatures and Hydrocarbon Emissions

In order to understand better the operation of spark-ignition engines during the warm-up period, a computer model had been developed which simulates the thermal processes of the engine. This model is based on lumped thermal capacitance methods for the major engine components, as well as the exhaust system. Coolant and oil flows, and their respective heat transfer rates are modeled, as well as friction heat generation relations. Piston-liner heat transfer is calculated based on a thermal resistance method, which includes the effects of piston and ring material and design, oil film thickness, and piston-liner crevice. Piston/liner crevice changes are calculated based on thermal expansion rates and are used in conjunction with a crevice-region unburned hydrocarbon model to predict the contribution to emissions from this source.
Technical Paper

Lab Study of Urea Deposit Formation and Chemical Transformation Process of Diesel Aftertreatment System

Diesel exhaust fluid, DEF, (32.5 wt.% urea aqueous solution) is widely used as the NH3 source for selective catalytic reduction (SCR) of NOx in diesel aftertreatment systems. The transformation of sprayed liquid phase DEF droplets to gas phase NH3 is a complex physical and chemical process. Briefly, it experiences water vaporization, urea thermolysis/decomposition and hydrolysis. Depending on the DEF doser, decomposition reaction tube (DRT) design and operating conditions, incomplete decomposition of injected urea could lead to solid urea deposit formation in the diesel aftertreatment system. The formed deposits could lead to engine back pressure increase and DeNOx performance deterioration etc. The formed urea deposits could be further transformed to chemically more stable substances upon exposure to hot exhaust gas, therefore it is critical to understand this transformation process.
Technical Paper


THIS paper reports the latest investigation of the relative merits of loop scavenging versus through scavenging. The authors hope that the conditions of the work permitted an objective evaluation of the two types of engines. The results of the study may be summarized as follows: 1. With symmetrical timing, neither cylinder shows significant advantage in trapping efficiency. 2. With symmetrical timing, the best ratio of exhaust-port to inlet-port effective area seems to be about 0.6. 3. Unsymmetrical timing is an effective method of improving trapping efficiency. 4. The value of net indicated fuel economy shows no significant difference between the two cylinders. The authors point out that because the areas were equal it is unlikely that the optimum port design of each type was used in comparing the cylinders. If optimum porting had been used, the two types might have shown more difference.
Technical Paper

Time-Resolved Measurements of Hydrocarbon Mass Flowrate in the Exhaust of a Spark-Ignition Engine

Experimental measurements of the instantaneous exhaust gas temperature, mass flowrate, and hydrocarbon concentration have been made in the exhaust of a single cylinder research engine. The temperature measurements were accomplished using an infrared optical technique and observing the radiation of the exhaust gas at the 4.4 μm band of CO2. Instantaneous exhaust gas mass flowrates were monitored by placing a restriction in the exhaust manifold and measuring the instantaneous pressures across the restriction. Time-resolved hydrocarbon concentrations were measured using a fast-acting sampling valve with an open time of 2 ms. From these measurements, the hydrocarbon mass flowrate is calculated as a function of crank angle.