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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

Time-Resolved, Speciated Emissions from an SI Engine During Starting and Warm-Up

A sampling system was developed to measure the evolution of the speciated hydrocarbon emissions from a single-cylinder SI engine in a simulated starting and warm-up procedure. A sequence of exhaust samples was drawn and stored for gas chromatograph analysis. The individual sampling aperture was set at 0.13 s which corresponds to ∼ 1 cycle at 900 rpm. The positions of the apertures (in time) were controlled by a computer and were spaced appropriately to capture the warm-up process. The time resolution was of the order of 1 to 2 cycles (at 900 rpm). Results for four different fuels are reported: n-pentane/iso-octane mixture at volume ratio of 20/80 to study the effect of a light fuel component in the mixture; n-decane/iso-octane mixture at 10/90 to study the effect of a heavy fuel component in the mixture; m-xylene and iso-octane at 25/75 to study the effect of an aromatics in the mixture; and a calibration gasoline.
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

A Study of Cycle-to-Cycle Variations in SI Engines Using a Modified Quasi-Dimensional Model

This paper describes the use of a modified quasi-dimensional spark-ignition engine simulation code to predict the extent of cycle-to-cycle variations in combustion. The modifications primarily relate to the combustion model and include the following: 1. A flame kernel model was developed and implemented to avoid choosing the initial flame size and temperature arbitrarily. 2. Instead of the usual assumption of the flame being spherical, ellipsoidal flame shapes are permitted in the model when the gas velocity in the vicinity of the spark plug during kernel development is high. Changes in flame shape influence the flame front area and the interaction of the enflamed volume with the combustion chamber walls. 3. The flame center shifts due to convection by the gas flow in the cylinder. This influences the flame front area through the interaction between the enflamed volume and the combustion chamber walls. 4. Turbulence intensity is not uniform in cylinder, and varies cycle-to-cycle.
Technical Paper

Auto-Oil Program Phase II Heavy Hydrocarbon Study: Analysis of Engine-Out Hydrocarbon Emissions Data

The engine-out (EO) total and speciated hydrocarbon emissions data from the Auto-Oil Program Phase II Heavy Hydrocarbon Study had been analyzed. The methodology was to first investigate the stabilized EO emissions (Bag 2) of a specific vehicle (Vehicle 04B, a 1989 Model Year Ford Taurus); then the vehicle-to-vehicle differences in Bag2 emissions were considered. Finally, the differences in the Bag2 and the starting/warm-up EO emissions (Bag1) were examined. The speciated emissions may be interpreted as a “feed-through” part due to the unreacted fuel species, and an “offset” part due to the decomposition products. The significant non-fuel emitted species were methane and the olefins. The HC emissions for vehicles with different total emissions were similar in species composition. For both the total and speciated emissions, there was no substantial difference between the Bag1 and Bag2 values for Vehicle 04B.
Technical Paper

Novel Experiment on In-Cylinder Desorption of Fuel from the Oil Layer

A technique has been developed to measure the desorption and subsequent oxidation of fuel in the oil layer by spiking the oil with liquid fuel and firing the engine on gaseous fuel or motoring with air. Experiments suggest that fuel desorption is not diffusion limited above 50 °C and indicated that approximately two to four percent of the cylinder oil layer is fresh oil from the sump. The increase in hydrocarbon emissions is of the order of 100 ppmC1 per 1% liquid fuel introduced into the fresh oil in a methane fired engine at mid-speed and light load conditions. Calculations indicate that fuel desorbing from oil is much more likely to produce hydrocarbon emissions than fuel emerging from crevices.
Technical Paper

Effects of Piston-Ring Dynamics on Ring/Groove Wear and Oil Consumption in a Diesel Engine

The wear patterns of the rings and grooves of a diesel engine were analyzed by using a ring dynamics/gas flow model and a ring-pack oil film thickness model. The analysis focused primarily on the contact pressure distribution on the ring sides and grooves as well as on the contact location on the ring running surfaces. Analysis was performed for both new and worn ring/groove profiles. Calculated results are consistent with the measured wear patterns. The effects of groove tilt and static twist on the development of wear patterns on the ring sides, grooves, and ring running surfaces were studied. Ring flutter was observed from the calculation and its effect on oil transport was discussed. Up-scraping of the top ring was studied by considering ring dynamic twist and piston tilt. This work shows that the models used have potential for providing practical guidance to optimizing the ring pack and ring grooves to control wear and reduce oil consumption.
Technical Paper

Chemical Kinetic Modeling of the Oxidation of Unburned Hydrocarbons

The chemistry of unburned hydrocarbon oxidation in SI engine exhaust was modeled as a function of temperature and concentration of unburned gas for lean and rich mixtures. Detailed chemical kinetic mechanisms were used to model isothermal reactions of unburned fuel/air mixture in an environment of burned gases at atmospheric pressure. Simulations were performed using five pure fuels (methane, ethane, propane, n-butane and toluene) for which chemical kinetic mechanisms and steady state hydrocarbon (HC) emissions data were available. A correlation is seen between reaction rates and HC emissions for different fuels. Calculated relative amounts of intermediate oxidation products are shown to be consistent with experimental measurements.
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

Thermodynamic Loss at Component Interfaces in Stirling Cycles

The paper considers the thermodynamic irreversibility in Stirling cycle machines at the interface between components with different thermodynamic characteristics. The approach of the paper is to consider the simplest possible cases and to focus on the factors that influence the thermodynamic losses. For example, an ideal adiabatic cylinder facing an ideal isothermal heat exchanger is considered. If there is no mixing in the cylinder (gas remains one dimensionally stratified), there will be no loss (irreversibility) if the gas motion is in phase with the gas pressure changes. If there is a phase shift, as required to have a network for the cylinder, there will be a loss (entropy generation) because the gas will not match the heat exchanger temperature. There will also be a loss if the gas in the cylinder is mixed rather than stratified. Similar simple interface conditions can be considered between components and interconnecting open volumes and between heat exchangers and regenerators.
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

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

Flame Kernel Development in a Methanol Fueled Engine

The combustion behavior in a modem 4-valve engine using a broad range of methanol/gasoline fuel mixtures was studied. The initial flame development was examined by using a spark plug fiber optics probe. Approximately, the kernel expansion speed, Sg, is relatively unchanged from M0 to M40; jumps by ∼30% from M40 to M60; and then remains roughly constant from M60 to M100. Statistics of the IMEP indicate that at a lean idle condition the combustion rate and robustness correlate with Sg: a higher value of Sg gives better combustion. Thus M60-M100 fuels give better idle combustion behavior than the M0-M40 fuels.
Technical Paper

Autoignition of Adiabatically Compressed Combustible Gas Mixtures

Measurements of explosion limits for fuel/air/diluent mixtures compressed by an expanding laminar flame have been made in a constant volume spherical bomb. The fuels studied to date range from butane to octane at fuel/air equivalence ratios from 0.8 to 1.3. The explosion pressures and temperatures range from 10 to 100 atm and 650 to 850 K. The pressure versus time curves show the behavior typical of the two-stage ignition process observed in rapid compression machines. A branched chain kinetic model has been developed to correlate the data. The model has been used to predict both the explosion limits measured in the current bomb experiments and ignition delays measured in prior rapid compression machine experiments. Good agreement between experiment and theory can be achieved with minor adjustment in published rate constants.
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

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

Measurement of -- Gas Temperature in an Engine by the VELOCITY OF SOUND METHOD

THIS paper outlines a new method of measuring end-gas temperatures within the cylinder of an operating engine. The new instrument measures the acoustical properties by the pulse method, transmitting an acoustical impulse through a gas path of known length and measuring the time of propagation through the gas. The method yields a value for the average velocity of sound in the path. The authors describe the instrument and engine modifications necessary. The results of tests are also discussed, with a detailed description of one series. The appendixes outline the mathematical steps of finding the sound velocity in gas mixtures and the fuel-air cycle for the detailed series of tests.
Technical Paper

Alcohol Fueled Heavy Duty Vehicles Using Clean, High Efficiency Engines

Non-petroleum based liquid fuels are essential for reducing oil dependence and greenhouse gas generation. Increased substitution of alcohol fuel for petroleum based fuels could be achieved by 1) use in high efficiency spark ignition engines that are employed for heavy duty as well as light duty operation and 2) use of methanol as well as ethanol. Methanol is the liquid fuel that is most efficiently produced from thermo-chemical gasification of coal, natural gas, waste or biomass. Ethanol can also be produced by this process but at lower efficiency and higher cost. Coal derived methanol is in limited initial use as a transportation fuel in China. Methanol could potentially be produced from natural gas at an economically competitive fuel costs, and with essentially the same greenhouse gas impact as gasoline. Waste derived methanol could also be an affordable low carbon fuel.
Technical Paper

Using Mass Spectrometry to Detect Ethanol and Acetaldehyde Emissions from a Direct Injection Spark Ignition Engine Operating on Ethanol/Gasoline Blends

Ethanol and acetaldehyde emissions from a direct ignition spark ignition were measured using mass spectrometry. Previous methods focused on eliminating or minimizing interference from exhaust species with identical atomic mass and fragment ions created in ionization process. This paper describes a new technique which exploits the fragment ions from ethanol and acetaldehyde. A survey of mass spectra of all major species of exhaust gas was conducted. It was found that ethanol contributes most ions in mass number 31 and that no other gas species produces ions at this mass number. Acetaldehyde detection suffers more interference. Nevertheless, it was estimated that detection at mass number 43 is possible with 10% error from 2-methylbutane. This new technique was validated in an engine experiment. By running the engine with pure gasoline and E85, the validity of the technique can be checked.
Technical Paper

Characterization of Structural, Volume and Pressure Components to Space Suit Joint Rigidity

Gas-pressurized space suits are highly resistive to astronaut movement, and this resistance has been previously explained by volume and/or structural effects. This study proposed that an additional effect, pressure effects due to compressing/expanding the internal gas during joint articulation, also inhibits mobility. EMU elbow torque components were quantified through hypobaric testing. Structural effects dominated at low joint angles, and volume effects were found to be the primary torque component at higher angles. Pressure effects were found to be significant only at high joint angles (increased flexion), contributing up to 8.8% of the total torque. These effects are predicted to increase for larger, multi-axis joints. An active regulator system was developed to mitigate pressure effects, and was found to be capable of mitigating repeated pressure spikes caused by volume changes.