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Technical Paper

Comparison of Numerical and System Dynamics Methods for Modeling Wave Propagation in the Intake Manifold of a Single-Cylinder Engine

The automotive industry is striving to adopt model-based engine design and optimization procedures to reduce development time and costs. In this scenario, first-principles gas dynamic models predicting the mass, energy and momentum transport in the engine air path system with high accuracy and low computation effort are extremely important today for performance prediction, optimization and cylinder charge estimation and control. This paper presents a comparative study of two different modeling approaches to predict the one-dimensional unsteady compressible flow in the engine air path system. The first approach is based on a quasi-3D finite volume method, which relies on a geometrical reconstruction of the calculation domain using networks of zero-dimensional elements. The second approach is based on a model-order reduction procedure that projects the nonlinear hyperbolic partial differential equations describing the 1D unsteady flow in engine manifolds onto a predefined basis.
Technical Paper

Automatic Mesh Generation for CFD Simulations of Direct-Injection Engines

Prediction of in-cylinder flows and fuel-air mixing are two fundamental pre-requisites for a successful simulation of direct-injection engines. Over the years, many efforts were carried out in order to improve available turbulence and spray models. However, enhancements in physical modeling can be drastically affected by how the mesh is structured. Grid quality can negatively influence the prediction of organized charge motion structures, turbulence generation and interaction between in-cylinder flows and injected sprays. This is even more relevant for modern direct injection engines, where multiple injections and control of charge motions are employed in a large portion of the operating map. Currently, two different approaches for mesh generation exist: manual and automatic. The first makes generally possible to generate high-quality meshes but, at the same time, it is very time consuming and not completely free from user errors.
Technical Paper

CFD Modeling of Compact Heat Exchangers for I.C. Engine Oil Cooling

This work describes the development of a computational model for the CFD simulation of compact heat exchangers applied for the oil cooling in internal combustion engines. Among the different cooler types, the present modeling effort will be focused on liquid-cooled solutions based on offset strip fins turbulators. The design of this type of coolers represents an issue of extreme concern, which requires a compromise between different objectives: high compactness, low pressure drop, high heat-transfer efficiency. In this work, a computational framework for the CFD simulation of compact oil-to-liquid heat exchangers, including offset-strip fins as heat transfer enhancer, has been developed. The main problem is represented by the need of considering different scales in the simulation, ranging from the characteristic size of the turbulator geometry (tipically μm - mm) to the full scale of the overall device (typically cm - dm).
Technical Paper

Development and Application of a Quasi-3D Model for the Simulation of Radial Compressors of Turbochargers for Internal Combustion Engines

In this work the 3Dcell method, a quasi3D approach developed by the Internal Combustion Engine Group at Politecnico di Milano, has been extended and applied to the fluid dynamic simulation of turbocharging devices for internal combustion engines, focusing on the compressor side. The 3Dcell is based on a pseudo-staggered leapfrog method applied to the governing equation of a 1D problem arbitrarily oriented in space. The system of equations is solved referring to the relative system in the rotating zone, whereas the absolute reference system has been used elsewhere. The vaneless diffuser has been modelled resorting to the conservation of the angular momentum of the flow stream in the tangential direction, combined with the solution of the momentum equation in the radial direction.
Technical Paper

Heat Transfer Analysis of Catalytic Converters during Cold Starts

The transient heat transfer behavior of an automotive catalytic converter has been simulated with OpenFOAM in 1D. The model takes into consideration the gas-solid convective heat transfer, axial wall conduction and heat capacity effects in the solid phase, but also the chemical reactions of CO oxidation, based on simplified Arrhenius and Langmuir-Hinshelwood approaches. The associated parameters are the results of data in literature tuned by experiments. Simplified cases of constant flow rates and gas temperatures in the catalyst inflow have been chosen for a comprehensive analysis of the heat and mass transfer phenomena. The impact of inlet flow temperatures and inlet flow rates on the heat up characteristics as well as in the CO emissions have been quantified. A dimensional analysis is proposed and dimensionless temperature difference and space-time coordinates are introduced.
Technical Paper

CFD Investigation of the Impact of Electrical Heating on the Light-off of a Diesel Oxidation Catalyst

In the last years, as a response to the more and more restrictive emission legislation, new devices (SRC, DOC, NOx-trap, DPF) have been progressively introduced as standard components of modern after-treatment system for Diesel engines. In addition, the adoption of electrical heating is nowadays regarded with interest as an effective solution to promote the light-off of the catalyst at low temperature, especially at the start-up of the engine and during the low load operation of the engine typical of the urban drive. In this work, a state-of-the-art 48 V electrical heated catalyst is considered, in order to investigate its effect in increasing the abatement efficiency of a standard DOC. The electrical heating device considered is based on a metallic support, arranged in a spiral layout, and it is heated by the Joule effect due to the passage of the electrical current.
Technical Paper

Direct Evaluation of Turbine Isentropic Efficiency in Turbochargers: CFD Assisted Design of an Innovative Measuring Technique

Turbocharging is playing today a fundamental role not only to improve automotive engine performance, but also to reduce fuel consumption and exhaust emissions for both Spark Ignition and Diesel engines. Dedicated experimental investigations on turbochargers are therefore necessary to assess a better understanding of its performance. The availability of experimental information on turbocharger steady flow performance is an essential requirement to optimize the engine-turbocharger matching, which is usually achieved by means of simulation models. This aspect is even more important when referred to the turbine efficiency, since its swallowing capacity can be accurately evaluated through the measurement of mass flow rate, inlet temperature and pressure ratio across the machine.
Technical Paper

Validation of a Theoretical Model for the Correction of Heat Transfer Effects in Turbocharger Testing through a Quasi-3D Model

In the last few years, the effect of diabatic test conditions on compressor performance maps has been widely investigated, leading some Authors to propose different correction models. The accuracy of turbocharger performance map constitute the basis for the tuning and validation of a numerical method, usually adopted for the prediction of engine-turbocharger matching. Actually, it is common practice in automotive applications to use simulation codes, which can either require measured compression ratio and efficiency maps as input values or calculate them “on the fly” throughout specific sub-models integrated in the numerical procedures. Therefore, the ability to correct the measured performance maps taking into account internal heat transfer would allow the implementation of commercial simulation codes used for engine-turbocharger matching calculations.