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Technical Paper

Technologies for Reducing Cold-Start Emissions of V6 ULEVs

New technologies are needed to reduce cold-start emissions in order to meet the more stringent regulations that will go into effect in Europe (EC2000 or EC2005) and in California (ULEV), especially for larger engines such as 6- and 8-cylinder units. One new technology in this regard is the electrically heated catalyst (EHC). However, the use of EHCs alone is not sufficient to achieve the necessary reduction in emissions. This paper discusses techniques for effectively combining the elements of an EHC system, including the introduction of secondary air into the exhaust, improved control of the air/fuel ratio, and an electric power supply method for EHCs. It is shown that it is more effective to promote exothermic reactions in the exhaust manifold than at the EHC. A suitable method for this purpose is to introduce secondary air into the exhaust near the exhaust valves.
Technical Paper

A Study of a Gasoline-Fueled Near-Zero-Emission Vehicle Using an Improved Emission Measurement System

This paper concerns research on an emission control system aimed at reducing emission levels to well below the ULEV standards. As emission levels are further reduced in the coming years, it is projected that measurement error will increase substantially. Therefore, an analysis was made of the conventional measurement system, which revealed the following major problems. 1. The conventional analyzer, having a minimum full-scale THC range of 10 ppmC, cannot measure lower concentration emissions with high accuracy. 2. Hydrocarbons are produced in various components of the measurement system, increasing measurement error. 3. Even if an analyzer with a minimum full-scale THC range of 1 ppmC is used in an effort to measure low concentrations, the 1 ppmC measurement range cannot be applied when the dilution air contains a high THC concentration. This makes it impossible to obtain highly accurate measurements. 4.
Technical Paper

Effect of Engine Design/Control Parameters and Emission Control Systems on Specific Reactivity of S.I. Engine Exhaust Gases

In 1994, the California Air Resources Board implemented low-emission vehicle (LEV) standards with the aim of improving urban air quality. One feature of the LEV standards is the increasingly tighter regulation of non-methane organic gases (NMOG), taking into account ozone formation, in addition to the existing control of non-methane hydrocarbons (NMHC). Hydrocarbons and other organic gases emitted by S.I. engines have been identified as a cause of atmospheric ozone formation. Since the reactivity of each chemical species in exhaust emissions differs, the effect on ozone formation varies depending on the composition of the exhaust gas components. This study examined the effect of different engine types, fuel atomization conditions, turbulence and emission control systems on emission species and specific reactivity. This was done using gas chromatographs and a high-performance liquid chromatograph to analyze exhaust emission species that affect ozone formation.
Technical Paper

Engine-Out and Tail-Pipe Emission Reduction Technologies of V-6 LEVs

Compared with in-line 4-cylinder engines, V-6 engines show a slower rise in exhaust gas temperature, requiring a longer time for catalysts to become active, and they also emit higher levels of engine-out emissions. In this study, The combination of a new type of catalyst, and optimized ignition timing and air-fuel ratio control achieved quicker catalyst light-off. Additionally, engine-out emissions were substantially reduced by using a swirl control valve to strengthen in-cylinder gas flow, adopting electronically controlled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), and reducing the crevice volume by decreasing the top land height of the pistons. A vehicle incorporating these emission reduction technologies reduced the emission level through the first phase of the Federal Test Procedure (FTP) by 60-70% compared with the Tier 1 vehicle.
Technical Paper

Experimental Studies on a Natural Gas Vehicle

This paper presents the results of several studies conducted on a natural gas vehicle. In one study of engine-out emissions performance, the exhaust emissions of the CNG engine were lower than those of the base gasoline engine. In another study of the conversion characteristics of three-way catalysts, it was found that the conversion efficiency of total hydrocarbons (THCs) was much lower in the lean-mixture region for the NGV. The reduced efficiency was traced to lower conversion and poor reactivity of low-end hydrocarbons and to a higher concentration of H2O.
Technical Paper

Development of Improved Metal-Supported Catalyst

A compact, high-performance and durable metal-supported catalyst has been developed by using the properties of the metal support effectively. The advantages of the metal-surpported catalyst against the ceramic-supported one are higher geometrical surface area, higher heat conductivity and thinner wall thickness. Higher geometlical surface area and higher heat conductivity lead to higher conversion efficiency after durability test and it allows reduction in catalyst volume. And the thinner wall thickness lowers gas flow resistance. But also, the metal-supported catalyst has the disadvantage of larger heat expansion and it requires special structure and material.
Technical Paper

Reduction of Wall Thickness of Ceramic Substrates for Automotive Catalysts

Ceramic honeycombs have been used as automotive catalyst supports in US, Japan, Europe and other highly urbanized countries. Now, engine output is a great concern for automanufacturers, and reduction of the wall thickness of honeycomb substrates became indespensable for maintenance of gas flow restriction to a certain low level. To reduce wall thickness, material should be strong to maintain canning strength of substrates. Mechanical strength was improved with high density cordierite. However, isostatic strength of whole substrates was still insufficient with reduced thin walls for canning in spite of the material's high mecanical strength. Discussion is carried out on further possibility of improving canning performance of thin wall substrates as well as flow restriction, and warm up characteristics.
Technical Paper

Warm-Up Characteristics of Thin Wall Honeycomb Catalysts

HC emission standards will be tightened during the 1990's in the US. A key issue in reducing HC emission is improving the warm-up characteristics of catalysts during the cold start of engines. For this purpose, studies are under way on reduction of heat mass of ceramic substrates. Reduction of cell walls in substrates to thickness smaller than the current thickness of 12mil or 6mil has resulted in reduced heat mass, and also reduced flow restriction of substrates. The warm-up characteristics of low bulk density catalysts are better than those of high bulk density, i.e., the warm-up characteristics of thinner wall or lower cell density catalysts are better than those of thicker wall or higher cell density catalysts. A relationship between geometric surface area and warm-up characteristics is observed.
Technical Paper

Effects of Exhaust Emission Control Devices and Fuel Composition on Speciated Emissions of S.I. Engines

Hydrocarbons and other organic materials emitted from S.I. engines cause ozone to form in the air. Since each species of organic materials has a different reactivity, exhaust components affect ozone formation in different ways. The effects of exhaust emission control devices and fuel properties on speciated emissions and ozone formation were examined by measuring speciated emissions with a gas chromatograph and a high-performance liquid chromatograph. In the case of gasoline fuels, catalyst systems with higher conversion rates such as close-coupled catalyst systems are effective in reducing alkenes and aromatics which show high reactivities to ozone formation. With deterioration of the catalyst, non-methane organic gas (NMOG) emission increases, but the specific reactivity of ozone formation tends to decrease because of the increase in alkane contents having low MIR values.
Technical Paper

Effect of Catalyst Systems on Characteristics of Exhaust Hydrocarbon Species

The California Low-Emission Vehicle (LEV) standards mandate a reduction in non-methane organic gases (NMOG). With the aim of analyzing NMOG emissions, a comparison was made of the hydrocarbon species found in the exhaust gas when different types of catalyst systems and fuel specifications were used. NMOG emissions are usually measured by removing methane from the total hydrocarbon (THC) emissions and adding aldehyde and ketone emissions. The NMOG level found in this way is thus influenced by the rate of methane in THC emissions. Another important factor in the LEV standards is specific reactivity (SR), indicating the formation potential of ozone, which is one cause of photochemical smog. Specific reactivity is expressed by the amount of ozone generated per unit weight of NMOG emissions, and is affected by the respective proportion of hydrocarbon species in the total NMOG emissions.
Technical Paper

A Study of a Practical Numerical Analysis Method for Heat Flow Distribution in the Engine Compartment

The thermal environment in the automotive engine compartment is expected to become increasingly severe in the years ahead owing to the installation of a large-size manifold catalyst to reduce exhaust emissions, among other factors. This will make it even more important to analyze the engine compartment layout in terms of heat flow considerations at the design conceptualization stage of a new vehicle. In this research, a flow analysis program called DRAG4D was applied to find the flow velocity distribution and ambient air temperature distribution in the engine compartment during driving, idling and after the engine was turned off. This original program developed at Nissan takes into account the effects of the energy balance and buoyancy, and provides a practical level of prediction accuracy. The time required to create an analytical model and perform the computations has been shortened by using an automatic grid generation function, based on a solid model, and experimental equations.
Technical Paper

Technological Trends in Automotive Electronics

Although automotive electronics was initially applied as a substitute for mechanical parts, this technology has the potential to achieve effective combinations of mechanical functions. A case in point is the successful resolution of fuel consumption and exhaust emission problems by effectively integrating engine control and catalyst technologies. LSI technology has also been incorporated into automotive electronics and established as a fundamental engine control tool. Thanks to LSI technology, particularly the use of microprocessor techniques, conventional machine design problems have been transformed into logical design ones. In the next stage of application, automotive electronics is expected to provide further benefits including a more comfortable ride, an improved human-machine system interface, and an advanced communications system between vehicles and other telecommunications stations.
Technical Paper

Fuel Enrichment Control System by Catalyst Temperature Estimation to Enable Frequent Stoichiometric Operation at High Engine Speed/Load Condition

Fuel economy can be improved by reducing engine displacement, thanks to the resulting smaller friction losses and pumping losses. However, smaller engines frequently operate at high-engine speed and high-load, when pressure on the accelerator increases during acceleration and at high speed. To protect exhaust system components from thermal stress, exhaust gas temperature is reduced by fuel enrichment. To improve fuel economy, it is important to increase the frequency of stoichiometric operation at high-engine speed and high-load. Usually, the start timing of fuel enrichment is based upon temperature requirements to protect the catalyst. In the high-engine speed and high-load zone, the threshold temperature of catalyst protection is attained after some time because of the heat mass. Therefore, stoichiometric operation can be maintained until the catalyst temperature reaches the threshold temperature.
Technical Paper

Low-cost FC Stack Concept with Increased Power Density and Simplified Configuration: Utilizing an Advanced MEA with Integrated Molded Frame

In 2006, Nissan began limited leasing of the X-TRAIL FCV equipped with their in-house developed Fuel Cell (FC) stack. Since then, the FC stack has been improved in durability, cold start-up capability, cost and size with the aim of promoting full-scale commercialization of FCVs. However, reduction of cost and size has remained a significant challenge because limited mass transport through the membrane electrode assembly (MEA) has made it difficult to increase the rated current density of the FC. Furthermore, it has been difficult to reduce the variety of FC stack components due to the complex stack configuration. In this study, improvements have been achieved mainly by adopting an advanced MEA to overcome these difficulties. First, the adoption of a new MEA and separators has improved mass transport through the MEA for increased rated current density. Second, an integrated molded frame (IMF) has been adopted as the MEA support.
Technical Paper

Development of an On-Board Fuel Reforming Catalyst for a Gasoline Engine

On-board hydrogen generation technology using a fuel reforming catalyst is an effective way to improve the fuel efficiency of automotive internal combustion engines. The main issue to be addressed in developing such a catalyst is to suppress catalyst deterioration caused by carbon deposition on the catalyst surface due to sulfur adsorption. Enhancing the hydrocarbon and water activation capabilities of the catalyst is important in improving catalyst durability. It was found that the use of a rare earth element is effective in improving the water activation capability of the catalyst. Controlling the hydrocarbon activation capability of the catalyst for a good balance with water activation was also found to be effective in improving catalyst durability.
Technical Paper

Impact of Oil-derived Sulfur and Phosphorus on Diesel NOx Storage Reduction Catalyst - JCAP II Oil WG Report

Emission regulations for diesel-powered vehicles have been gradually tightening. Installation of after-treatment devices such as diesel particulate filters (DPF), NOx storage reduction (NSR) catalysts, and so on is indispensable to satisfy rigorous limits of particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxides (NOx). Japan Clean Air Program II Oil Working Group (JCAPII Oil WG) has been investigating the effect of engine oil on advanced diesel after-treatment devices. First of all, we researched the impact of oil-derived ash on continuous regeneration-type diesel particulate filter (CR-DPF), and already reported that the less sulfated ash in oil gave rise to lower pressure drop across CR-DPF [1]. In this paper, impact of oil-derived sulfur and phosphorus on NSR catalyst was investigated using a 4L direct injection common-rail diesel engine with turbo-intercooler. This engine equipped with NSR catalyst meets the Japanese new short-term emission regulations.
Technical Paper

The Effects of Sulfated Ash, Phosphorus and Sulfur on Diesel Aftertreatment Systems - A Review

This paper reviews the relevant literature on the effects of sulfated ash, phosphorus, and sulfur on DPF, LNT, and SCR catalysts. Exhaust backpressure increase due to DPF ash accumulation, as well as the rate at which ash is consumed from the sump, were the most studied lubricant-derived DPF effects. Based on several studies, a doubling of backpressure can be estimated to occur within 270,000 to 490,000 km when using a 1.0% sulfated ash oil. Postmortem DPF analysis and exhaust gas measurements revealed that approximately 35% to 65% less ash was lost from the sump than was expected based on bulk oil consumption estimates. Despite significant effects from lubricant sulfur and phosphorus, loss of LNT NOX reduction efficiency is dominated by fuel sulfur effects. Phosphorus has been determined to have a mild poisoning effect on SCR catalysts. The extent of the effect that lubricant phosphorus and sulfur have on DOCs remains unclear, however, it appears to be minor.
Technical Paper

In-line Hydrocarbon (HC) Adsorber System for Reducing Cold-Start Emissions

An adsorber system for reducing cold-start hydrocarbon (HC) emissions has been developed combining existing catalyst technologies with a zeolite-based HC adsorber. The series flow in-line concept offers a passive and simplified alternative to other technologies by incorporating one additional adsorber substrate into existing converters without any additional valving, purging lines, secondary air, or special substrates. Major technical issues to be resolved for practical use of this system are 1) the ability to adsorb a wide range of HC molecular sizes in the cold exhaust gas and 2) the temperature difference between HC desorption from the adsorber and activation of the catalyst to convert desorbed HCs. This paper describes the current development status of hydrocarbon adsorber aftertreatment technologies. We report results obtained with a variety of adsorber properties, washcoat structures of adsorber catalyst and start-up and underfloor catalyst system combinations.
Technical Paper

Development of New Technologies Targeting Zero Emissions for Gasoline Engines

This paper describes new technologies for achieving exhaust emission levels much below the SULEV standards in California, which are the most stringent among the currently proposed regulations in the world. Catalyst light-off time, for example, has been significantly reduced through the adoption of a catalyst substrate with an ultra-thin wall thickness of 2 mil and a catalyst coating specifically designed for quicker light-off. A highly-efficient HC trap system has been realized by combining a two-stage HC trap design with an improved HC trap catalyst. The cold-start HC emission level has been greatly reduced by an electronically actuated swirl control valve with a high-speed starter. Further, an improved Air Fuel Ratio (AFR) control method has achieved much higher catalyst HC and NOx conversion efficiency.
Technical Paper

Emission Reduction Technologies for Turbocharged Engines

It is projected that compliance with Japanese new exhaust emission regulations set to be enforced in 2000 year will be difficult for turbocharged engines with conventional technologies. This is mainly because of the delay in catalyst lightoff at engine start due to the lower exhaust gas temperature of turbocharged engines compared with that of their naturally aspirated counterparts. Compliance will be particularly difficult for V-6 engines on account of the large heat mass of the exhaust system, resulting in a slower temperature rise. Previously, improvement of hydrocarbon (HC) conversion rates following engine start depended solely on the low-temperature characteristic of the catalyst. The catalyst system described here adopts a completely new mechanism that traps HCs before the catalyst lights off and then desorbs them for conversion after the engine warms up.